A Guide to the Scottish Novel World Cup 2018

Scottish Novel World Cup 2018
Category: Reading

It was the summer of 1998. The BBC Scotland crew floated aboard a barge on the Seine under the Parisian sun when the presenter asked, "Scotland vs Brazil in the opening game of the World Cup: it may never get as good as this again... again... again." (echo added for effect)

No Scotland fan could have predicted that come 2018 the Tartan Army would still be waiting for the opportunity to light up the grounds of a major soccer tournament. However, even if we keep failing to excel at the world's favourite sport, at least we're punching above our weight at one of its favourite pasttimes: books.

Scotland's continuing ability to light up up the literary world is why we are running the #ScottishNovelWorldCup on Twitter @ScottishBkTrust.

Starting with these eight groups, featuring 32 fantastic Scottish novels from across time, we'll be posting regular polls on Twitter throughout the length of the 2018 World Cup (14 June to 15 July). Simply vote for your favourite novels on the days of our 'matches' to give your best-loved authors the chance at glory this summer. To get a sense of what we're on about, check out Richard Osman's fantastic World Cup of Books from last year.  

Important notice: these books have been chosen for their popularity, and, in some instances, to add different playing styles to the #ScottishNovelWorldCup. These 32 novels shouldn't be read as a 'best of'. The tournament is supposed to be a fun celebration of Scottish fiction. Funbusters are discouraged from going for two-footed tackles, otherwise we're gonnae take our ball home. 

To run a sweepstake for the actual 2018 World Cup, while changing lives through reading and writing, please download our Russia 2018 Sweepstake Template and fundraise for Scottish Book Trust.

 

Dates of subsequent rounds

Last 16: 2-3 July 2018

Quarter-Finals: 4-5 July

Semi-Finals: 10-11 July

Final: 13 July

 

Group A - Poll: 14 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group B. Runner-Up plays winner of Group B)

 
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by JK Rowling Book Cover

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J. K.  Rowling

His Bloody Project by Graeme Macrae Burnet

His Bloody Project by Graeme Macrae Burnet

Rob Roy by Sir Walter Scott

Rob Roy by Sir Walter Scott

The Trick Is To Keep Breathing by Janice Galloway

The Trick Is To Keep Breathing by Janice Galloway

 

Group B - Poll: 15 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group A. Runner-Up plays winner of Group A)

 
44 Scotland Street by Alexander McCall Smith

 

44 Scotland Street by Alexander McCall Smith

Knots & Crosses by Ian Rankin

Knots & Crosses by Ian Rankin

Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie

Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie

The Long Drop by Denise Mina

The Long Drop by Denise Mina

 

Group C - Poll: 18 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group D. Runner-Up plays winner of Group D)

 
Quite Ugly One Morning by Christopher Brookmyre

Quite Ugly One Morning by Christopher Brookmyre

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Cutting Room by Louise Welsh

The Cutting Room by Louise Welsh

The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan

The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan

 

Group D - Poll: 20 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group C. Runner-Up plays winner of Group C)

 
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Fishnet by Kirstin Innes

Fishnet by Kirstin Innes

Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh

Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh

Wish I Was Here by Jackie Kay

Wish I Was Here by Jackie Kay

 

Group E - Poll: 22 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group F. Runner-Up plays winner of Group F)

 
Buddha Da by Anne Donovan

 Buddha Da by Anne Donovan

Divided City by Theresa Breslin

Divided City by Theresa Breslin

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks

The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks

 

Group F - Poll: 25 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group E. Runner-Up plays winner of Group E)

 
How to Be Both by Ali Smith

 

How to be both by Ali Smith

Jelly Roll by Luke Sutherland

Jelly Roll by Luke Sutherland

Lanark by Alaisdair Gray

Lanark by Alasdair Gray

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark

 

Group G - Poll: 27 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group H. Runner-Up plays winner of Group H)

 
Sunset Song by Lewis Grassic Gibbon

Sunset Song by Lewis Grassic Gibbon

The Hand that First Held Mine by Maggie O'Farrell

The Hand that First Held Mine by Maggie O'Farrell

The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg

The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg

The Wire in the Blood by Val McDermid

The Wire in the Blood by Val McDermid

 

Group H - Poll: 28 June

(Winner plays runner up in Group G. Runner-Up plays winner of Group G)

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
 

 

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

The Cone Gatherers by Robin Jenkins

The Cone-Gatherers by Robin Jenkins

The Game of Kings by Dorothy Dunnett

The Game of Kings by Dorothy Dunnett

The Testament of Gideon Mack by James Robertson

The Testament of Gideon Mack by James Robertson

 

Voting in the Scottish Novel World Cup will take place via our @ScottishBkTrust feed. We hope you'll join us there! 

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