The Slumbering Rooster Twitches

… And you know what that means. The 2011 Tournament of Books longlist is up, and there’s a whole lot of good stuff on it.

Hosted by The Morning News and sponsored by Field Notes, the Tournament of Books is more than a best-book-of-the-year award. It’s a conversation, a colloquy, with gentlemanly debate and due considerations of opinion and, every once in a while, an exciting reversal. It turns the literary competition format inside out, and in the process makes for some serious entertainment.

Half the fun of the longlist is imagining the possible brackets—Beatrice and Virgil vs. Parrot and Olivier? Nox vs. Rut? Skippy Dies vs. A Beautiful Place to Die? You can hold out hope all the way through the zombie rounds. And this year you can even picture yourself in the action, because the ToB is offering a guest judge slot to the reader who, in 100 words or less, can best “Show us your Rooster knowledge, your sense of what it takes to do the job right.” Email your declaration of judicious perspicacity to talk at by Sunday, December 19, and you too could be a wattle in the rooster’s comb!

(Illustration from “The Diverting History of John Gilpin” in The Complete Collection of Pictures and Songs by Randolph Caldecott, engraved and printed by Edmund Evans.)


Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>