Though they may have been a bit overshadowed in the U.S. by yesterday's Pulitzer announcement, this week has also brought two important literary news items from the UK.
First, the shortlist for the prize formerly known as the Orange Prize and now known simply as the Women's Prize for Fiction. It's an incredible list—Hilary Mantel seems to be up against her toughest competition yet. Will she sweep all three of the U.K.'s major awards?
Speaking of Zadie Smith, she also figures in the second item of literary news from the U.K: She's one of the 2013 "20 under 40" list from Granta magazine. Created every 10 years, the list honors the most promising 20 British writers under the age of 40. It's Smith's second time on the list, which for the first time contains a majority of female authors—12/20. It's also the most international list yet.
Click on the author's name to see their author page on BookPage.com.
The winners of the 2013 Pulitzer Prizes for excellence in journalism and the arts were announced today. The top prize in fiction went to The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson, which was one of our Top Books of 2012. Read our interview with Johnson about the book here, as well as a behind-the-scenes blog post about the interview.
The other winners include:
GENERAL NONFICTION—Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America by Gilbert King
HISTORY—Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America's Vietnam by Fredrik Logevall
BIOGRAPHY—The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss
DRAMA—Disgraced by Ayad Akhtar
POETRY—Stag's Leap by Sharon Olds
MUSIC—Partita for 8 Voices by Caroline Shaw
What do you think of the winners? Are there any that you're inspired to read now that they've won?
The countdown is on for the 2013 RITA Awards—given out by the Romance Writers of America (RWA). During the lead-up to the glamorous July 20 award gala in Atlanta, romance fans have the opportunity to meet each other and interact with the nominated authors through a series of weekly online Q&A events.
Each video chat get-together is devoted to a particular award category—such as Best First Book, Best Historical Romance and Best Paranormal Romance—and completely free. But space is limited to 1,000 participants, so secure your spot(s) soon! The first chat is next Thursday, April 18.
Visit the RWA site to see the full schedule and make a reservation.
What was your favorite romance this year? Is it a RITA finalist?
Children's Book Week is coming up—May 13 to 19—and the Children's Choice Book Awards finalists have just been announced. Up for Author of the Year are:
Both The Fault in Our Stars and Wonder made our Readers' Choice: Best Books of 2012 list, and we're big fans of Jeff Kinney here on The Book Case. Which books are you (and the little ones in your life) going to vote for? Are there any books that you think were snubbed?
Claire Vaye Watkins is on a literary award roll. In November she was named one of the National Book Foundation's "5 Under 35," and her short story collection, Battleborn, was included on many best of 2012 lists (including ours).
Yesterday, she collected two more awards. Beating out the likes of Junot Díaz, she won The Story Prize, which is awarded for the best short story collection of 2012 and comes with a prize of $20,000. She was also named a One Story 2013 Literary Debutante, who will be feted at the One Story Literary Debutante Ball in Brooklyn on June 6.
This morning she was named a recipient of the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award—given by the American Academy of Arts and Letters—honoring “a young writer of considerable literary talent for a work published in 2012" and accompanied by a prize of $10,000.
We love when writers and critics get along! Last night, at a NYC ceremony packed with writers, literary critics and other publishing folk, the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) announced the winners of their 2012 book awards.
Among the distinguished recipients is Ben Fountain, with whom we were thrilled to share a table at last year's Author in the Round dinner, part of the Southern Festival of Books. Fountain's Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk—one of our Best Books of 2012—won in the fiction category.
Here's a complete list of the winners:
Andrew Solomon, Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity (Scribner)
Leanne Shapton, Swimming Studies (Blue Rider Press)
D. A. Powell, Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys (Graywolf Press)
Marina Warner, Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights (Belknap Press: Harvard University Press)
What do you think of the winners? How many of them have you read, and which ones will you be adding to your list of books to read?
Everyone's got Oscar fever this week, but we're also really excited about another awards ceremony coming up—the 2013 Audies, which recognize distinction in audiobooks.
Finalists were announced by the Audio Publishers Association today, and the winners will be awarded at the Audies Gala on May 30 in New York City. Our own Associate Publisher Julia Steele and Contributing Editor Sukey Howard (who writes our monthly audio column) are serving as judges in the competition.
Here are some highlights from the list of finalists:
• Sex and God at Yale by Nathan Harden (narrated by Scott Aiello), Audible Inc.
• Love Is the Cure by Elton John (narrated by Elton John), Hachette Audio
• Breasts by Florence Williams (narrated by Kate Reading), Tantor Media
• Cemetery John by Robert Zorn (narrated by Sean Runnette), Tantor Media
• The Crisis of Zionism by Peter Beinart (narrated by Lloyd James), Tantor Media
• A Rage in Harlem by Chester Himes (narrated by Samuel L. Jackson), Audible Inc.
• The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (narrated by Claire Daines), Audible Inc.
• Speaks the Nightbird by Robert McCammon (narrated by Edoardo Ballerini), Audible Inc.
• Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter (narrated by Edoardo Ballerini), Harper Audio
• The Bartender's Tale by Ivan Doig (narrated by David Aaron Baker), Recorded Books
• America Again by Stephen Colbert (narrated by Stephen Colbert), Hachette Audio
• I Suck at Girls by Justin Halpern (narrated by Sean Schemmel), Harper Audio
• The Cursing Mommy's Book of Days by Ian Frazier (narrated by Cynthia Nixon), Macmillan Audio
• Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (narrated by Jenny Lawson), Penguin Audio
• Me the People by Kevin Bleyer (narrated by Kevin Bleyer), Random House Audio/Books on Tape
• Don't Cry for Me by Sharon Sala (narrated by Kathe Mazur), Audible Inc.
• The Witness by Nora Roberts (narrated by Julia Whelan), Brilliance
• Scandalous Desires by Elizabeth Hoyt (narrated by Ashford MacNab), Hachette Audio
• The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley (narrated by Angela Dawe), Tantor Media
• Never Seduce a Scot by Maya Banks (narrated by Kristen Potter), Tantor Media
• Hush Money by Chuck Greaves (narrated by Dan Butler), AudioGo
• The Good Thief's Guide to Vegas by Chris Ewan (narrated by Simon Vance), AudioGo
• And When She Was Good by Laura Lippman (narrated by Linda Emond), Macmillan Audio
• The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny (narrated by Ralph Cosham), Macmillan Audio
• The Nightmare by Lars Kepler (narrated by Mark Bramhall), Macmillan Audio
See the full list here (PDF link). What do you think of the finalists? Which audio books of the last year were your favorites, and are there any that you feel were snubbed? What books are you listening to right now?
In our office we discuss and anticipate the announcement of the Newbery, Caldecott and Printz Awards with passion and glee—and let's just say that this morning there was a fair bit of squealing when the ALA named this year's recipients.
Perhaps most of all, we are thrilled that Jon Klassen was awarded the Caldecott Award for This Is Not My Hat, the story of a big fish in pursuit of a tiny thief. For the October 2012 issue of BookPage, Klassen hand-illustrated a Q&A for us. We loved the result (and of course we loved the book itself!):
We are also tickled that Katherine Applegate won the Newbery Award for The One and Only Ivan, which we reviewed in January 2012. Reviewer Keven Delecki praised this "brave, moving story" about the animals who live at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall.
The Printz Award went to In Darkness by Nick Lake, which BookPage reviewer Kimberly Giarrantano described as "an incredible novel." It's a harrowing and compelling story about a teen boy in the aftermath of the 2010 Haitian earthquake.
For more on these award-winning books—and other fantastic picks for young readers—subscribe to Children's Corner, our bimonthly e-newsletter. The next edition goes out Wednesday and will feature some very special interviews. (Hint, hint.)
And without further ado, here is a (partial) list of the 2013 Youth Media Award winners. Find the full list here, and click the links below to read coverage in BookPage.
2013 NEWBERY AWARD
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate (HarperCollins)
2013 CALDECOTT AWARD
This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen (Candlewick)
2013 PRINTZ AWARD
In Darkness by Nick Lake (Bloomsbury)
For even more recommendations for fantastic children's and teen books, see our list of the Best Children's Books for 2012.
The National Book Awards were given out tonight at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. Louise Erdrich was the winner of a tight fiction race, beating out Junot Díaz and Dave Eggers (as well as newcomers Ben Fountain and Kevin Powers) for the $10,000 award. Read on for the full list of winners.
Louise Erdrich, The Round House (BookPage interview)
Katherine Boo, Behind the Beautiful Forevers (BookPage review)
Young People's Literature
William Alexander, Goblin Secrets
David Ferry, Bewilderment
Distinguished Contribution to American Letters
It seems like just yesterday that we finished last year's literary awards season—and here it is, upon us again!
This morning, the National Book Award Finalists were announced on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." Whereas last year the list of Fiction Finalists included a highly-acclaimed (but under-appreciated by the general public) short story writer, a debut author and two up-and-coming novelists, this year's list is filled with authors who have more name recognition—most notably Louise Erdrich, who has written more than 20 books, and Junot Díaz, who already has a Pulitzer Prize and a MacArthur "Genius" grant under his belt.
I'm especially pleased to report that the list of Finalists includes authors from our September and October cover stories!
The finalists are listed below. The winners will be announced in a ceremony in New York City on November 14.
• Junot Díaz, This Is How You Lose Her (Read an interview about the novel.)
• Dave Eggers, A Hologram for the King
• Louise Erdrich, The Round House (Read an interview about the novel.)
• Ben Fountain, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (Read a Q&A about the novel.)
• Kevin Powers, The Yellow Birds (Read a review of the novel.)
• David Ferry, Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations
• Cynthia Huntington, Heavenly Bodies
• Tim Seibles, Fast Animal
• Alan Shapiro, Night of the Republic
• Susan Wheeler, Meme
YOUNG PEOPLE'S LITERATURE:
William Alexander, Goblin Secrets
Carrie Arcos, Out of Reach
Patricia McCormick, Never Fall Down (Read a review of the novel.)
Eliot Schrefer, Endangered
Steve Sheinkin, Bomb: The Race to Build—and Steal—the World's Most Dangerous Weapon
Which authors do you think should take home the big prize on November 14?