If Tarzan’s sidekick Cheeta had been nominated for vice-president that could not have been more surprising than seeing his “autobiography” Me Cheeta on the shortlist for The Guardian‘s First Book Award. Yet there it is. Writes Helen Pidd:
The autobiography of an acting chimpanzee is going head to head with a cold war love story and a novel about the assassination of a Pakistani dictator in this year’s Guardian first book award…
Me Cheeta is up against a strong list of fiction and non-fiction titles, including A Case of Exploding Mangoes by Mohammed Hanif, which tells the story of the assassination of the Pakistani dictator General Zia-ul- Haq in 1988. Other contenders include Stalin’s Children, Owen Matthews’s memoir of his parents’ cold war love affair in Russia interspersed with his own life as a young reporter in 1990s Moscow, and The Rest is Noise, a sweeping musical history by the New Yorker’s music critic, Alex Ross.
None of these are works of sf/fantasy. Are they, Cheeta?