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Tag: Awards (1-10 of 75)

Australian author Richard Flanagan wins the Man Booker Prize

Australian author Richard Flanagan has won the Man Booker Prize for The Narrow Road to the Deep North—plus the £50,000 (about $80,000) prize and the great prestige that come with it.

Flanagan, born in Tasmania and living in Australia, is the third Aussie to win the award, which he received at a ceremony on Tuesday in London. The judges described his sixth book, published by Chatto & Windus, as “a harrowing account of the cost of war to all who are caught up in it.” Set in World War II, The Narrow Road tells the story of a surgeon in a Japanese POW camp along the Thailand-Burma Death Railway. The novel was partly inspired by Flanagan’s father’s experiences as a Japanese POW—he died at age 98 on the day his son finished the book.

“The two great themes from the origin of literature are love and war: this is a magnificent novel of love and war,” said chair of the judges A.C. Grayling. “Written in prose of extraordinary elegance and force, it bridges East and West, past and present, with a story of guilt and heroism.”

Flanagan’s win carries a special historical significance because this year marked the first time ever that the competition was open to writers from any country, as long as their work was published in English in the U.K. (Previously, only citizens of the U.K. Commonwealth, Ireland or Zimbabwe were eligible.) Brits still nabbed half of the spots on September’s shortlist, and British author Neel Mukherjee was the favorite to win for The Lives Of Others, set in 1960s India.

Flanagan is as surprised as anyone else by his win. “In Australia, the Man Booker is sometimes seen as something of a chicken raffle,” Flanagan said. “I just didn’t expect to end up the chicken.”

 

 

French writer Patrick Modiano wins Nobel Prize in Literature

The Swedish Academy announced this morning that French historical novelist Patrick Modiano has won the 2014 Nobel Prize in Literature, calling him “a Marcel Proust of our time.” Modiano, 69, is an unexpected pick—beating out the favorites, Japanese author Haruki Murakami and Kenyan writer Ngugi wa Thiong’o, to win the award worth eight million kronor (about $1.1 million USD). READ FULL STORY

Women dominate this year's BBC National Short Story Award shortlist

Today the BBC announced an all-female author shortlist for its National Short Story Award. The nominees are Bad Dreams by Tessa Hadley, The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Francesca Rhydderch, Kilifi Creek by Lionel Shriver, Miss Adele Amidst the Corsets by Zadie Smith and The American Lover by Rose Tremain.

The five stories “tackle pivotal moments in a woman’s life from girlhood to middle age, including sex and love, death and disintegration,” the BBC reports. All the authors have established a body of critically acclaimed or award-winning work—Shriver and Tremain have been nominated for the award before— except for Welsh newcomer Francesca Rhydderch, who made her debut this year with The Rice Paper Diaries. This is the third all-female list in the past nine years.

“The short story form has a unique ability to capture a single defining moment,” says Chair of Judges Alan Yentob. “It invites us to dive headfirst into another world… In their very different ways these five stories do just that.” The winner and runner-up will be honored on Sept. 30 at BBC’s Radio Theatre, and the ceremony will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row.

On the Books: Long-lost Dr. Seuss stories hit shelves

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A new Dr. Seuss book was published Tuesday, 23 years after the writer’s death. Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories is a collection of four previously unpublished short stories that Seuss wrote for Redbook magazine in the 1950s. The stories, discovered by Seuss biographer Charles Cohen and published by Random House, feature both familiar faces like The Grinch and Horton the elephant, as well as new characters like the titular Kwuggerbug. Theodor Geisel, the man behind the legendary pseudonym, died in 1991. [The Telegraph]

British fantasy novelist Graham Joyce died Tuesday at the age of 59 after a yearlong battle with lymphoma. Joyce’s publisher Gollancz, confirmed the news via Twitter: “Graham Joyce was a writer of huge heart. He loved people and his writing celebrated the magic of them. His books are a fitting legacy.” The multiple-time British Fantasy award winner was mourned on Twitter by fans and fellow authors including Stephen King, who tweeted, “Very sad to hear that Graham Joyce, a truly great novelist, has passed away. Too soon. Far too soon.” [The Guardian]

The nation’s largest bookstore, Barnes & Noble, experienced a 7-percent loss in revenue in its first quarter, ending in August—but managed to cut its net losses from $87 million to $28.4 million in the first period of the fiscal year. Retail CEO Mitch Klipper said that part of the reduction in declining sales is due to the ongoing dispute between retailer Amazon and publisher Hachette, as well as the popularity of movies adapted from young-adult books. B&N’s future revenues will in part be determined by its Nook Media ebook business and a new joint venture with Google, a book delivery system, currently being piloted. [Publishers Weekly]

Celebrity television judge-turned-author Judge Judy Sheindlin is giving away her new book for free. What Would Judy Say?: Be the Hero of Your Own Story is downloadable on Sheindlin’s website a PDF or e-book, free of charge.  On the site, Scheindlen—who collects a bigger paycheck than any other celebrity on TV, earning nearly a million dollars per workday—describes her book as “an honest conversation with women about what it really takes to get what you deserve out of life.” [Los Angeles Times]

 

 

 

 

'A Series of Unfortunate Events' author Lemony Snicket will host the National Book Awards

Today, the National Book Foundation announced that A Series of Unfortunate Events author Lemony Snicket, whose real name is Daniel Handler, will host the 65th National Book Awards ceremony this fall. Handler will be the first author of both adult and children’s books to emcee the event, which is scheduled to take place on November 19 in New York City. Last year’s ceremony was hosted by Mika Brzezinski, host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

This is not the first time that Handler has participated in the proceedings.  In 2008, the best-selling author chaired the panel that gave out the way award for best young people’s literature book.

“Daniel Handler is witty, charming, and one of the best writers in America,” the foundation’s executive director, Harold Augenbraum, said in a press release. “We are looking forward forward to a wonderful National Book Awards evening this year with him as host.” In a statement, Handler said that when the foundation’s executive director Harold Augenbraum contacted him about hosting, he thought he had won an award. “Um, guess again,” Augenbraum told him.

In addition to the A Series of Unfortunate Events book series, Handler has also written the All the Wrong Questions series under his pen name, and he is currently working on We Are Pirates, the story of a pair of high school girls who steal a ship and attack other boats in the San Francisco Bay. His work as Daniel Handler includes 2006’s Adverbs and 2011’s Why We Broke Up.

 

 

PEN American Center releases 2014 literary award shortlists

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Today, the PEN American Center—the largest branch of the PEN International organization—released shortlists for nine of its literary prizes today, and some of the names among them are Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls author David Sedaris, Forty-one False Starts author Janet Malcolm, and The Sports Gene author David Epstein.

PEN presents awards in categories ranging from best debut work to best work of poetry in translation, and today’s shortlists are culled from longlists announced earlier this year. The announcement doesn’t cover the prestigious PEN/Faulkner Award for the best work of fiction by an American author or the PEN/Malamud Award for a short story author. The Faulkner Award went to Karen Joy Fowler for We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, and the Malamud Award hasn’t been announced yet.

From PEN America’s website, here are the full shortlists. The winners will be announced on July 30th.

PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize ($25,000): To an author whose debut work—a first novel or collection of short stories published in 2013—represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise.

Judges: Charles Bock, Jonathan Dee, Fiona Maazel, and Karen Shepard

  • A Constellation of Vital Phenomena (Hogarth), Anthony Marra
  • Brief Encounters With the Enemy (The Dial Press), Saïd Sayrafiezadeh
  • Everybody’s Irish (FiveChapters Books), Ian Stansel
  • Godforsaken Idaho (Little A/New Harvest), Shawn Vestal
  • The People in the Trees (Doubleday), Hanya Yanagihara

PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay ($10,000): For a book of essays published in 2013 that exemplifies the dignity and esteem that the essay form imparts to literature.

Judges: Geoff Dyer, Stanley Fish, Ariel Levy, and Cheryl Strayed

  • Forty-One False Starts (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Janet Malcolm
  • Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls (Little, Brown and Company), David Sedaris
  • The Faraway Nearby (Viking Adult), Rebecca Solnit
  • Critical Mass (Doubleday), James Wolcott

PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award ($10,000): For a book of literary nonfiction on the subject of the physical or biological sciences published in 2013.

Judges: Akiko Busch, Rivka Galchen, and Eileen Pollack

  • The End of Night (Little, Brown and Company), Paul Bogard
  • Five Days at Memorial (Crown), Sheri Fink
  • High Price (Harper), Carl Hart
  • Surfaces and Essences (Basic Books), Douglas Hofstadter & Emmanuel Sander
  • Wild Ones (Penguin Press), Jon Mooallem

PEN Open Book Award ($5,000): For an exceptional book-length work of literature by an author of color published in 2013.

Judges: Catherine Chung, Randa Jarrar, and Monica Youn

  • Duppy Conqueror (Copper Canyon Press), Kwame Dawes
  • Leaving Tulsa (University of Arizona Press), Jennifer Elise Foerster
  • domina Un/blued (Tupelo Press), Ruth Ellen Kocher
  • Cowboys and East Indians (FiveChapters Books), Nina McConigley
  • Ghana Must Go (Penguin Press), Taiye Selasi

PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography ($5,000): For a distinguished biography published in 2013.

Judges: James Atlas, Lisa Cohen, and Wendy Gimbel

  • Lawrence in Arabia (Doubleday), Scott Anderson
  • Holding On Upside Down: The Life and Work of Marianne Moore (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Linda Leavell
  • Margaret Fuller (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), Megan Marshall
  • American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Deborah Solomon
  • A Life of Barbara Stanwyck (Simon & Schuster), Victoria Wilson

PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing ($5,000): To honor a nonfiction book on the subject of sports published in 2013.

Judges: Joel Drucker, Chad Harbach, and Jackie MacMullan

  • Collision Low Crossers (Little, Brown and Company), Nicholas Dawidoff
  • The Sports Gene (Current), David Epstein
  • League of Denial (Crown Archetype), Mark Fainaru-Wada & Steve Fainaru
  • The Emerald Mile (Scribner), Kevin Fedarko
  • Their Life’s Work (Simon & Schuster), Gary M. Pomerantz

PEN/Steven Kroll Award for Picture Book Writing ($5,000): To a writer for an exceptional story illustrated in a picture book published in 2013.

Judges: Mac Barnett, Ted Lewin, and Elizabeth Winthrop

  • Train (Orchard Books), Elisha Cooper
  • Tea Party Rules (Viking), Ame Dyckman
  • The King of Little Things (Peachtree Publishers), Bil Lepp
  • Crabtree (McSweeney’s McMullens), Jon & Tucker Nichols

PEN Award for Poetry in Translation ($3,000): For a book-length translation of poetry into English published in 2013.

Judge: Kimiko Hahn

  • Even Now: Poems by Hugo Claus (Archipelago), David Colmer
  • Diaries of Exile by Yannis Ritsos (Archipelago), Karen Emmerich & Edmund Keeley
  • Collected Haiku of Yosa Buson by Yosa Buson (Copper Canyon Press), Takako Lento & W.S. Merwin
  • Paul Klee’s Boat by Anzhelina Polonskaya (Zephyr Press), Andrew Wachtel
  • Cut These Words Into My Stone: Ancient Greek Epitaphs (Johns Hopkins University Press), Michael Wolfe

PEN Translation Prize ($3,000): For a book-length translation of prose into English published in 2013.

Judges: Ann Goldstein, Becka McKay, and Katherine Silver

  • An Armenian Sketchbook by Vasily Grossman (New York Review Books), Elizabeth & Robert Chandler
  • Transit by Anna Seghers (New York Review Books), Margot Bettauer Dembo
  • The African Shore by Rodrigo Rey Rosa (Yale University Press), Jeffrey Gray
  • The Emperor’s Tomb by Joseph Roth (New Directions), Michael Hofmann
  • Autobiography of a Corpse by Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky (New York Review Books), Joanne Turnbull & Nikolai Formozov

 

On The Books: Salman Rushdie and Pussy Riot speak at the PEN American Literary Gala

The PEN American Center hosted its annual literary gala last night, and the list of speakers celebrating freedom of expression included Salman Rushdie, two members of the Russian protest group Pussy Riot, and Toni Morrison. Jewher Ulham accepted the PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award on behalf of her father, Ilham Tohti, a scholar arrested in January and charged with inciting separation among China’s ethnic Uighurs. Words are “all he has ever had at his disposal and all that he has ever needed. And this is what China finds so threatening,” she said in her acceptance speech. Other awards went to Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, who was given the inaugural Digital Freedom Award and to Salman Rushdie who won the PEN’s Literary Service Award. [Yahoo] READ FULL STORY

2014 Pulitzer Prize winners announced; Donna Tartt takes the big fiction prize

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Donna Tartt’s sprawling literary epic that centers on a mysterious little painting has taken the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, besting other lengthy titles, such as The Son by Philipp  Meyer and The Woman Who Lost Her Soul by Bob Shacochis, both of which received “A” grades from EW. READ FULL STORY

Love 'Dune'? Check out these five sci-fi reads

Back in 1974, Chilean filmmaker Alejandro Jodorofsky began the ambitious project of translating sci-fi 1965 novel Dune to the big screen. Although Jodorofsky’s adaptation of the extraterrestrial story eventually fell apart because no Hollywood studio would finance the avant-garde, pricey film, the 1965 novel by American author Frank Herbert later inspired a book saga, a 1984 film, a three-part mini series in 2000, and even a comic book series.

READ FULL STORY

National Book Critics Circle Awards go to Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche, Sheri Fink

Last night, the National Book Critics Circle announced the winners of its prestigious awards for books published in 2013. Not too surprisingly, Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche — you might recognize that name from the Beyonce track “***Flawless” — edged out Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch for the big fiction prize for Americanah, the probing novel about Nigerian immigrants that EW chose as one of the best books of last year.

See below for a full list of winners: READ FULL STORY

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