The best things book awards do is offer a selection of above-average books to read and offer encouragement to writers. By the former I mean that a reader benefits by reading all the books in contention for a prize. Don't just stop at the winner. When all is said and done it is a comparison of apples and oranges, so enjoy the whole bowl of fruit. If the reader might like a good 'dust up' of opinions concerning whether the "best" book won - well, enjoy that, too.
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Literary Cage Match: Which Book Deserved to Win the Booker?
By Gabe Habash and Mike Harvkey
The 2011 Man Booker was announced earlier this week, going to The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes. But did the award get it right this year? Deputy Reviews Editor Mike Harvkey and News Editor Gabe Habash each have something to say about it, and the argument will be settled via cage match. Time to put the children and weak-stomached to bed.