Annal: 1990 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

Results of the Man Booker Prize in the year 1990.

Book:Possession: A Romance

Possession: A Romance

A.S. Byatt

Possession, for which Byatt won England’s prestigious Booker Prize, was praised by critics on both sides of the Atlantic when it was first published in 1990. “On academic rivalry and obsession, Byatt is delicious. On the nature of possession—the lover by the beloved, the biographer by his subject—she is profound,” said The Sunday Times (London). The New Yorker dubbed it “more fun to read than The Name of the Rose . . . Its prankish verve [and] monstrous richness of detail [make for] a one-woman variety show of literary styles and types.” The novel traces a pair of young academics—Roland Michell and Maud Bailey—as they uncover a clandestine love affair between two long-dead Victorian poets. Interwoven in a mesmerizing pastiche are love letters and fairytales, extracts from biographies and scholarly accounts, creating a sensuous and utterly delightful novel of ideas and passions.

Book:Amongst Women

Amongst Women

John McGahern

Michael Moran is an old Irish Republican whose life was forever transformed by his days of glory as a guerrilla leader in the Irish War of Independence. Moran is till fighting—with his family, his friends, and even himself—in this haunting testimony to the enduring qualities of the human spirit.

Book:An Awfully Big Adventure: A Novel

An Awfully Big Adventure: A Novel

Beryl Bainbridge

This provocative and compelling novel by one of Britian’s leading writers tells the darkly humorous tale of Stella, a star-struck, teenaged actress caught in the backstage intrigue of a 1950s Liverpool theater repertory company. Stella romances the director of a production of Peter Pan with consequences that would be uproariously funny if they were not so dire. The play becomes a metaphor for the darker side of youth as Stella is drawn into very adult mayhem.

Book:The Gate of Angels

The Gate of Angels

Penelope Fitzgerald

In 1912, rational Fred Fairly, one of Cambridge’s best and brightest, crashes his bike and wakes up in bed with a stranger—fellow casualty Daisy Saunders, a charming, pretty, generous working-class nurse. So begins a series of complications—not only of the heart but also of the head—as Fred and Daisy take up each other’s education and turn each other’s philosophies upside down.

Book:Lies of Silence

Lies of Silence

Brian Moore

When the IRA orders Dillon to park his car at a Belfast hotel, he knows he’s planting a bomb that will kill and maim dozens. He also knows his wife will be killed if he disobeys.

Book:Solomon Gursky Was Here

Solomon Gursky Was Here

Mordecai Richler

The elusive Solomon Gursky died in a plane crash. Or did he? Thats one of many questions 52-year-old sexually dysfunctional biographer Moses Berger is determined to answer. Long obsessed with the insanely wealthy, bootlegging Jewish-Canadian Gursky clan, Berger is desperately trying to chronicle the stories of their lives. But solving the mystery has its problems: namely, the Gurskys confusing & convoluted family tree & Bergers own unyielding fondness for alcohol. This is an irreverent, labyrinthine, & bitingly hilarious work of brilliant invention. Extravagantly adventurous & malevolently comic.

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