Neel Mukherjee is favored to win the 2014 Man Booker Prize for his latest novel, "The Lives of Others," by oddsmakers. The Booker Prize Foundation opened the competition for the 50,000 pound ($80,387.50) prize to include all authors writing in English and published in the U.K. for the first time, the Guardian reported.
The new rules led to the inclusion of two American authors, Karen Joy Fowler for "We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves" and Joshua Ferris for "To Rise Again at a Decent Hour," on the shortlist of nominees. "The rules of the prize changed at the end of 2013, to embrace ‘the freedom of English in all its vigor, its vitality, its versatility and its glory wherever it may be,’ opening up to writers beyond the U.K. and Commonwealth," the statement announcing the shortlist said.
The nominees, in addition to Mukherjee, Fowler and Ferris, are Richard Flanagan for "The Narrow Road to the Deep North," Howard Jacobsen for "J" and Ali Smith for "How to be Both." Jacobsen previously won in 2010 for "The Finkler Question."
In terms of Man Booker Prize betting odds, William Hill has Calcutta-born Mukherjee favored to win at 5/2 odds. Flanagan has 3/1 odds while the two Americans are longshots, according to William Hill. Fowler is listed at 11/2 odds while Ferris has 8/1 odds.
Eleanor Catton won the prize last year for "The Luminaries." The Man Booker Prize 2014 is to be announced Tuesday.