Thursday, December 11, 2008

2008 National Book Awards

The 2008 National Book Awards were announced on November 20th, and I have been meaning to post the results. So here they are:

Peter Matthiessen’s Shadow Country won Fiction
Inspired by a near-mythic event of the wild Florida frontier at the turn of the twentieth century, Shadow Country reimagines the legend of the inspired Everglades sugar planter and notorious outlaw E. J. Watson, who drives himself relentlessly toward his own violent end at the hands of neighbors who mostly admired him, in a killing that obsessed his favorite son. Click here for a review from the New York Times.

Annette Gordon-Reed's The Hemingses of Monticello won Non-Fiction

The enthralling multigenerational story of Thomas Jefferson's hidden slave family. Click here for a review from the New York Times.

Judith Blundell What I Saw and How I Lied won Young Adult
When Evie's father returned home from World War II, the family fell back into its normal life pretty quickly. But Joe Spooner brought more back with him than just good war stories. When movie-star handsome Peter Coleridge, a young ex-GI who served in Joe's company in postwar Austria, shows up, Evie is suddenly caught in a complicated web of lies that she only slowly recognizes. She finds herself falling for Peter, ignoring the secrets that surround him . . . until a tragedy occurs that shatters her family and breaks her life in two.As she begins to realize that almost everything she believed to be a truth was really a lie, Evie must get to the heart of the deceptions and choose between her loyalty to her parents and her feelings for the man she loves. Someone will have to be betrayed. The question is . . . who? Click here to read a review.

Mark Doty's Fire to Fire won Poetry
Mark Doty's Fire to Fire collects the best of Mark Doty's seven books of poetry, along with a generous selection of new work. Doty's subjects—our mortal situation, the evanescent beauty of the world, desire's transformative power, and art's ability to give shape to human lives—echo and develop across twenty years of poems. His signature style encompasses both the plainspoken and the artfully wrought; here one of contemporary American poetry's most lauded, recognizable voices speaks to the crises and possibilities of our times. Click here for an excerpt.

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