Category Archives: Competition

A Satisfying Night for The Story Prize

Was it just me, or was this year’s Story Prize event an even better show than usual? Which is not to say that it ever isn’t good—Larry Dark and his finalists never fail to be interesting and lively. And, as I’m fond of pointing out, there are only three of them, which means even the […]

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Tales of the Unread: NBCC and The Story Prize Finalists

Two of my favorite shortlists, the National Book Critics Circle and The Story Prize, were announced this week, and there are some really choice picks among them. Oh, I know, I say that every year. Maybe they just look extra good right now because I haven’t read many of the books in question. Even the […]

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The IMPAC Dublin Long Whateveritis

We’ve made it to the middle of November, and it is with a grateful sense of continuity that I direct your attention to the recently announced IMPAC Dublin Literary Award Longlist. Regular readers know that this is one of my favorite literary competitions for a number of reasons: The books are nominated by librarians worldwide […]

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The Man Booker Prize Shortlist, or: Hilary Mantel’s Preakness Stakes

The Man Booker Prize judges have announced their shortlist, narrowing down their original dozen by half. It’s an interesting selection, made up—as the Booker website is eager to point out— of “two debut novels, three small independent publishers, two former shortlisted authors and one previous winner. Of the six writers, three are men and three […]

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2012 PEN Literary Awards Announced

The PEN American Center has announced the winners of the 2012 PEN Literary Awards, and they’re a good mixed bag. It’s nice to see an organization that uses its award process as an umbrella to celebrate a few different kinds of noteworthiness, and shines a spotlight on some great small presses in the process. Considering […]

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Uncover a Classic for Hesperus Press

Since 2002 Hesperus Press, an independent publisher based in London, has been reissuing neglected classics, unsung contemporary fiction, translations, biographies, histories, and authoritative nonfiction from all over the world. The press’s motto is Et Remotissima Prope, which translates from the Latin as “bringing near what is far”; if anyone around here is celebrating the underdog, […]

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Pulitzer Prize for Fiction: Null Value Returned

At this point in the year, post-Tournament of Books and pre-Orange Prize, book award season starts to feel like something of a slog. You start to wonder what, again, is the point of voting on a handful of books in order to declare one the best and slap a sticker on its cover. Fortunately, the […]

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Steven Millhauser Wins the 2011 Story Prize

A field of three is all dynamic tension: no sure thing, no dark horse. Which is what makes The Story Prize such a good competition—three short fiction collections, no particular agenda. With three nominees you can’t hope for an even distribution of anything, so it might as well just be about the writing. This year […]

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How Independent Is It?: The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize Longlist

The longlist has been posted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, which will be awarded May 14. This one is always a good go-to source for reading outside the box, assuming you don’t habitually read novels in translation that were first published in Europe—and if you do already, then more power to you. I always […]

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2011 NBCC Award Finalists Announced

The National Book Critic Circle has announced the 2011 contenders for the NBCC Awards. Nominees were announced by last year’s finalists at a star-studded event in downtown Manhattan, for which a good-sized crowd “braved a few inches of city slush”—never let it be said that literary types are wimps. It’s a good list, with no […]

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