Inspired by a line in Woody Allen’s Hannah And Her Sisters—“Don’t forget the poem on page 112!”—the Prix de la Page 112 has announced the shortlist for its 2016 prize, it’s fourth since it began, rather appropriately, in 2012.
The prix was invented as a response to the recent rise of “publishers and writers taking exceptional care with the beginning of a book in order to impress the reader immediately” and then, “too often, nothing at all” happens for the rest of the book. They believe that page 112 is the part of a book where readers’ attention starts to wane, as well as the attentions of the writer, editors, and publisher.
The solution? See whose book makes you want to read it cold on page 112. The (of course) 12-person jury includes a mystery juror whose identity will be revealed at the same time as the winner’s.
Here’s the shortlist (click on the title to read page 112):
Phrères, Claire Barré
Roulette Russe, Bruno Bayon
En Attendant Bojangles,Olivier Bourdeaut
Basse Fidélité, Philippe Dumez
L’Ombre de Nos Nuits, Gaëlle Josse
Le Dernier Amour d’Attila Kiss, Julia Kerninon
Aventures, Pierre Lafargue
Histoire de la Violence, Edouard Louis
Giratoire, Dominique Paravel
Venise Aller Simple, Alain Veinstein
A truly novel literary prize but not very friendly towards novellas.