9 April 13 | Chad W. Post

OK, so, tomorrow at 10am sharp (or as sharp as I can make it), we’ll be announcing the 10 fiction finalists for this year’s BTBA, while over at the Poetry Foundation’s blog the 6 poetry finalists will be revealed.

As of this moment, I know which books made the poetry list, but have NO IDEA what’s on the fiction shortlist. Which means that it’s a good time to speculate wildly . . .

You can find the longlist here and can read about all 25 titles here

Having read a few more of these books since the list was originally released, I’m in a slightly better position to guess as to which titles will be finalists. But mind you, I don’t know shit—this list below is just to get the conversation started.


Satantango by László Krasznahorkai, translated from the Hungarian by George Szirtes (New Directions; Hungary)

Maidenhair by Mikhail Shishkin, translated from the Russian by Marian Schwartz (Open Letter Books; Russia)

My Struggle: Book One by Karl Knausgaard, translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett (Archipelago Books; Norway)

Traveler of the Century by Andrés Neuman, translated from the Spanish by Nick Caistor and Lorenza Garcia (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux; Argentina)

Very Likely

The Map and the Territory by Michel Houellebecq, translated from the French by Gavin Bowd (Knopf; France)

The Colonel by Mahmoud Dowlatabadi, translated from the Persian by Tom Patterdale (Melville House; Iran)


Autoportrait by Edouard Levé, translated from the French by Lorin Stein (Dalkey Archive Press; France)

With the Animals by Noëlle Revaz, translated from the French by Donald W. Wilson (Dalkey Archive Press; Switzerland)

Joseph Walser’s Machine by Gonçalo M. Tavares, translated from the Portuguese by Rhett McNeil (Dalkey Archive Press; Portugal)

The Hunger Angel by Herta Müller, translated from the German by Philip Boehm (Metropolitan Books; Romania)

What do you think? Any books you really want to make the shortlist?

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