The Diagram Prize is upon us! Members of the public vote for the books with the oddest titles in a competition sponsored by the Bookseller. The titles are spotted and submitted by publishers, booksellers and librarians around the world.
It is quite a thrilling shortlist -
I Was Tortured By the Pygmy Love Queen by Jasper McCutcheonBookseller diarist and prize custodian Horace Bent commented:
How to Write a How to Write Book by Brian Piddock
Are Women Human? And Other International Dialogues by Catharine A. MacKinnon
Cheese Problems Solved by P.L.H.McSweeney
If You Want Closure in Your Relationship, Start With Your Legs by Big Boom
People who Mattered in Southend and Beyond: From King Canute to Dr Feelgood by D. Gordon
"I must pay homage to those books that narrowly missed out on a shortlist place. These were, in no particular order: Drawing and Painting the Undead; Stafford Pageant: The Exciting Innovative Years 1901–1952; and Tiles of the Unexpected: A Study of Six Miles of Geometric Tile Patterns on the London Underground. All sound like they are positively thrilling reads, and I do hope that the authors will try again next year. Honourable mention should also go to two titles that were ruled out because they were published too long ago: an unlikely-sounding HR manual called Squid Recruitment Dynamics, and the fascinating anthropological tome Glory Remembered: Wooden Headgear of Alaska Sea Hunters.The spotter of the winning book receives a magnum of champagne.
Emma Jepson of Borders UK spotted McCutcheon's Pygmy Love Queen novel in which a parachutist finds himself stripped naked and erotically tortured by the female leader of a pygmy tribe. McCutcheon has already written a follow-up: Go Ahead, Woman, Do Your Worst! Erotic Tales of Heroes Chained.