Barry's A Long Long Way is about Irish soldiers fighting for Britain during the First World War. The author fills this anti-war book with poetic precision about good and evil and how the human spirit never gives up.
The novel does not contain (to the best of my knowledge) even an iota of India in it but don't let that stop you from reading it.
For Barry, among Indian writers Rohinton Mistry "seems to me to be an example of the pure writer - following his own demanding and human star."
And as to why no Indian has won the Booker since Arundhati Roy long long ago -
"Indian writing is a series of mountains, maybe it has gone higher than prizes and the like."When it comes to blogging, Barry feels he's too old and too scared to start now.
"I do read them though. One thing I have noticed is the astonishingly high quality of Indian literature blogs. Everyone who writes there seems to have the grasp of Arnold and the penetration of Leavis."
Wonder who Barry is talking about - Maybe Amit Varma or Sepia Mutiny or even Deepak Chopra
Meanwhile, the Booker Prize has kicked up quite a frenzy with even Jabberwock putting in his bit for this grand literary slugfest.
Am waiting with bated breath for the Booker announcement (October 10) - Here's a final look at this year's nominees
The Sea - John Banville
Arthur & George - Julian Barnes
A Long Long Way - Sebastian Barry
Never Let Me Go - Kazuo Ishiguro
The Accidental - Ali Smith
On Beauty - Zadie Smith
Jabberwock may be throwing in his lot behind Barnes but that doesn't stop me from wishing that the best Booker wins.