This Sunday the brackets will be revealed for the NCAA March Madness basketball tourney, but that’s not the I’m anticipating. The funniest, most enjoyable, and completely irreverent book competition launches tomorrow – the Tournament of Books. Several years ago, a bunch of book geeks (probably inebriated book-a-holics) wondered why basketball should have all the fun? Why not pit one book against another in a sweet sixteen match to the death? Or, should I say, to the Rooster, because the winner of this literary mash up receives a live rooster. Just what I’m sure Claire is daydreaming about right now as she scrambles to finish the last draft of her latest novel. All that work to earn a rooster pooping all over her back lawn. Now that she’s a vegetarian, she couldn’t even eat it. Do people eat rooster?
There’s a different judge for each match up, some are editors or at-large-book-know-it-alls, and others are authors. Commentary for every match is provided by John Warner and Kevin Guilfoile and in true Tournament of Books fashion, I can’t remember who they are and I don’t really care. But, I love their banter. This will give you a sense of their style:
John: I’m excited to put the Rooster-red blazer back on and join you in the booth for this year’s commentary. In a continuation of a tradition reaching back to last year, we’ve tried to actually read the books in the Tournament. I think I might’ve done a bit better than you, having completed 14 of 16 and sampled the other two. This is mostly due to me having read four of the contenders prior to the announcement of the brackets, though.
Kevin: I started reading with the intention of running the table, but life intervened, and by “life,” of course I mean Life Unexpected, which airs Tuesday nights on the WB . . . I finished better than half of this year’s contenders, and if I can inject some early optimism into the proceedings, I personally found this year’s field to be very Read the rest of this entry »