Thursday, May 20, 2010

Yann Martel's 5 favorite books

Yann Martel is the author of the novel Life of Pi, winner of the 2002 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. Beatrice and Virgil, his new novel, is now out by Spiegel & Grau.

He named his five favorite books for The Daily Beast. One title on the list:
Their Eyes Were Watching God
by Zora Neale Hurston

For the language of it. A novel published in 1937, Hurston wrote it in the African-American vernacular. Which doesn't make it quaint or paternalistic or any other nonsense. It takes a language already established and in reshaping it to tell the life of one Janie Crawford, Hurston tells her story powerfully and expressively, besides reinventing the English language.
Read about another book on the list.

Their Eyes Were Watching God also appears on Benjamin Obler's list of the top 10 fictional coffee scenes in literature.

Also see Yann Martel's recent and somewhat different 6 favorite books list.

--Marshal Zeringue