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The 2015 Tournament of Books: Week One Wrap-Up

The 2015 Tournament of Books: Week One Wrap-Up

The tournament action so far.

We’re one week into the 2015 Tournament of Books. You can grab some updated brackets here that reflect which books have been knocked out and which books remain in the competition.

On Monday the tournament kicked off as Matthea Harvey advanced The Bone Clocks over Adam. Of the decision she said: “I’m still thinking about how both novels allowed my mind to inhabit other identities and filled me with new questions.”

Tuesday saw Elliot Ackerman choose A Brief History of Seven Killings over All the Birds, Singing. Of the two, he wrote, “I enjoyed reading All the Birds, Singing and A Brief History of Seven Killings as a pair. If A Brief History is about killing, All the Birds is about how some stories just never die.”

We saddled Elizabeth Donnelly with our own Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See and Lars Iyer’s Wittgenstein Jr. She went with All the Light, writing, “Sadly, it really wasn’t much of a battle. In comparison to Wittgenstein Jr’s coldness, All the Light We Cannot See starts the reader right in the thick of it.”

Stephen Marche picked The Paying Guests over A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall in a controversial decision. He wrote, “As fascinating as A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall is, and as gutsy a narrative, The Paying Guests has that sure hand of 19th-century character development and plotting which is just so reliable.”

Victor LaValle closed out the contentious first week by advancing Annihilation over Dept. of Speculation, writing, “I felt as if Dept. of Speculation had decided not to turn that last bend on the path, not to encounter the final ugliness it had been promising me.”


The Tournament of Books’ organizers Andrew Womack and Rosecrans Baldwin are TMN’s co-founders. Baldwin’s most recent book is Everything Now, winner of the 2022 California Book Award. For his other books, try More by The Tournament of Books Staff