Beatty is the first American to win the prize in its 48 year history. This is the second time indie publisher Oneworld took the prize. The publishing house won last year with Marlon James’ A Brief History of Seven Killings.
The award was presented at a ceremony this evening in the UK. Here is more about the book:
The book is narrated by African-American ‘Bonbon’, a resident of the run-down town of Dickens in Los Angeles county, which has been removed from the map to save California from embarrassment. Bonbon is being tried in the Supreme Court for attempting to reinstitute slavery and segregation in the local high school as means of bringing about civic order. What follows is a retrospective of this whirlwind scheme, populated by cartoonish characters who serve to parody racial stereotypes. The framework of institutional racism and the unjust shooting of Bonbon’s father at the hands of police are particularly topical.