One-Minute Book Reviews

November 28, 2007

Read All the Passages Shortlisted for the 2007 Bad Sex in Fiction Award Here

Just found a link to all the passages shortlisted for the Bad Sex in Fiction Award from the U.K-based Literary Review, won Tuesday by Norman Mailer‘s The Castle in the Forest, which defeated books by Ian McEwan, Jeanette Winterson and others. The Guardian (formerly the Manchester Guardian) has them here:,,2217735,00.htm

That link will take you to them, but if it doesn’t work for you, just Google “Guardian + Bad Sex Awaard Shortlisted Passages.” Still haven’t found a YouTube upload of the reading of the offending lines that preceded the announcement of the winner. The finalists included Gary Shteyngart‘s Absurdistan, shown here.

(c) 2007 Janice Harayda. All rights reserved.


  1. Thank you, Janice! I was getting more and more curious about the actual literary excerpts themselves but I didn’t know how an American newspaper could manage to print them for us. It’s fortunate that anything goes in the British paper the Guardian, and I could see these excerpts for myself. Thanks for the laughs! All the best, K.

    Comment by impatientreaderdotcom — November 29, 2007 @ 2:13 pm | Reply

  2. You’re very welcome. And you’re right about those American newspapers (which I can say with confidence after having edited the book section of a large one for 11 years). I still can’t find a YouTube or other upload of the readings. Would that be a gem?

    Comment by 1minutebookreviewswordpresscom — November 29, 2007 @ 5:44 pm | Reply

  3. Sweet holy Moses, those were bad–especially the one where the man made love to a robot (I think). Thanks for the laughs!

    Comment by David Schleicher — December 1, 2007 @ 10:54 pm | Reply

  4. Don’t you wonder why we didn’t hear more about those passages from the media in the U.S., David? So many Americans have the idea that the British are more puritanical than we are (beautifully refuted by the late English critic V.S. Pritchett in one of his essays). If that were true, you might have read more about those passages in American newspapers and magazines.

    One reason I wrote about the Bad Sex Awards is that after working for 11 years for an American daily, I knew that most newspapers wouldn’t touch the nominated passages. And one of the things I enjoy most about blogging is that you can deal with issues that you might not be able to write about in “old” media.

    Comment by 1minutebookreviewswordpresscom — December 2, 2007 @ 3:07 pm | Reply

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