Some Thoughts on the 2013 Miles Franklin Award

The winner of the 2013 Miles Franklin Award is announced tonight. Before that, I wanted to add my two cents to the thousands of words about to be written about it.

For the first time I can remember, I have actually read the entire shortlist. There are links to all my reviews below. Note, I didn’t review Modjeska’s The Mountain because I gave up halfway through. Needless to say, I won’t be super excited if it wins.

I’m really hoping Michelle de Kretser’s Questions of Travel wins. I do genuinely think it’s the best novel on the shortlist, but I also said to our Allen and Unwin rep when it came out that I thought it would win the Miles Franklin. I’m really hoping I’m proved right.

However, I will be super surprised if it does. There seems to be so much love out there – from both judges and reading public – for Carrie Tiffany’s Mateship With Birds, that I can’t see anything else beating it.

The Beloved and Floundering are both great first novels, but neither quite reach the heights I would expect from a Miles Franklin winner. I won’t be unhappy if I’m proved wrong on either count.

I’m curious to know what everyone else is thinking about this. Let me know.

My reviews:
Floundering – Romy ASH
Questions of Travel – Michelle DE KRETSER
The Beloved – Annah FAULKNER
The Mountain – Drusilla MODJESKA
Mateship With Birds – Carrie TIFFANY


5 thoughts on “Some Thoughts on the 2013 Miles Franklin Award

  1. Tony says:

    Really hope ‘Mateship with Birds’ doesn’t win. I ahven’t read any of the others, but I’m getting a bit sick of a groundswell of support for a popular book leading to its receiving a major prize…

    …and yes, ‘All That I Am’, I’m looking at you ;)

  2. Dina Ross says:

    I’m with you – Questions of Travel is a great book and far and above the rest artistically and intellectually. I have been really surprised at the number of prizes allocated to Mateship With Birds which is sweet and gentle and reflective but….. There seems to be a trend in which a number of prizes are allocated to one novel almost as a prelude to it winning the MF: remember Anna Funder’s All That I Am? You can read my review of Questions of Travel in my blog, Books Now!, which I’ve recently begun:

  3. And the news is out! I suggested my reading group schedule Questions of travel for our July read as our reading from this year’s shortlist. Woo hop, we’ll be reading the winner. As I have only read Tiffany, I didn’t have any feelings except that I hoped Tiffany wouldn’t win – not because I didn’t like it but because I don’t think there is only one “top” novel in a year.

    I like de Kretser so am greatly looking forward to reading this.

    • Matthew Todd says:

      It’s so great!

      And I couldn’t agree more about one “top” novel each year, much like Tony says above. Last year, when every award was won by either Foal’s Bread (which, to be fair, is a glorious novel) or All That I Am, it felt a little less special each time they won something.

      It’s nice to share the love. :-)

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