Hatchet Job of the Year Shortlist Revealed

By Jason Boog Comment

The Omnivore has revealed the Hatchet Job of the Year Award shortlist for the year, searching for the “angriest, funniest, most trenchant book review of the past twelve months.”

We’ve included links to the complete shortlist below–what was your favorite book review of the year? Here’s an excerpt from the Hatchet Job of the Year manifesto:

Book reviewing is facing unprecedented challenges. Critics fear for their livelihoods. The cultural deficit from years of reckless use of clichés and superlatives will take generations to pay off. The emergence of a new global superpower, with its sock-puppet dictatorship and one-Kindle policy, means we can no longer afford to be complacent. It is time for literary journalism – the backbone of our once-proud book industry – to regain its competitive edge. This is why difficult decisions have to be made.  Authorial egos must be cut down to size. Editors need to be called to account. But this is not just about wielding the axe. Our guiding philosophy is compassionate criticism.

Shortlist for the Hatchet Job of the Year

Craig Brown on The Odd Couple by Richard Bradford, Mail on Sunday

Ron Charles on Lionel Asbo by Martin Amis, Washington Post

Richard Evans on Hitler: A Short Biography by A.N. Wilson, New Statesman

Claire Harman on Silver: A Return to Treasure Island by Andrew Motion, London Evening Standard

Zoë Heller on Joseph Anton by Salman Rushdie, New York Review of Books

Camilla Long on Aftermath by Rachel Cusk, Sunday Times

Allan Massie on The Divine Comedy by Craig Raine, Scotsman

Suzanne Moore on Vagina by Naomi Wolf, Guardian

We discussed the shortlist on the Morning Media Menu today as well. Press play below to listen…