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Screen shot from website.

Screen shot from website.

The next book I will be posting about was a finalist for the Pen/Faulkner Award for Fiction. Now, I am familiar with many different book awards, but I hadn’t heard of this one before. So I decided to look into this award and see what it is about.

From the website: “The PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction is a national prize which honors the best published works of fiction by American citizens in a calendar year. Three writers are chosen annually by the directors of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation to serve as judges for the prize, and these judges are asked to select five books (from among the more than 350 works submitted each year) as finalists for the award, making this the largest peer-juried award in the country. Both the eventual winner of the award and all finalists are invited to Washington, D.C. for the PEN/Faulkner Award Ceremony and Dinner.”

This award was first given in 1981 to Walter Abish for How German Was It? No, I had never heard of this book either, but that was the year I was born, so that isn’t surprising. However, some of the other winners were familiar: E.L. Doctorow, E. Annie Proulx, Anne Patchett, John Updike, David Guterson. There were some familiar names on the finalists lists as well: Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver, Michael Chabon, Joyce Carol Oates, Anne Tyler.