Readersforum's Blog

March 25, 2013

Diagram Prize Winner 2013: ‘Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop’ Wins Year’s Weirdest Book Title

By JILL LAWLESS

A supernaturally tinged barnyard manual has won Britain’s quirkiest literary award, the Diagram Prize for year’s oddest book title.

“Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop” by Reginald Bakeley was awarded the prize Friday by trade magazine The Bookseller.

The book took 38 percent of the votes in a public ballot, beating finalists including “How Tea Cosies Changed the World,” “Was Hitler Ill?” and “God’s Doodle: The Life and Times of the Penis.”

“Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop” is subtitled “and other practical advice in our campaign against the fairy kingdom.” It is described by its Massachusetts-based publisher, Conari Press, as “the essential primer for banishing the dark fairy creatures that are lurking in the dark corners and crevices of your life.”

Diagram Prize overseer Horace Bent said it was no coincidence “in these austere times that a book aimed to assist members of the public frugally farming their own produce proved the most popular title.”

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