Kirkus Reviews today announced the six finalists for the first annual Kirkus Prize in the categories of Fiction, Nonfiction and Young Readers’ Literature
Winners in the three categories will receive $50,000 each, making the Kirkus Prize one of the richest annual literary awards in the world.
Writers become eligible by receiving a rare starred review from Kirkus Reviews.
Panels of three highly regarded judges, composed of a writer, a bookseller or librarian and a Kirkus critic, select the Kirkus Prize finalists and winners from among those starred books.
Kirkus chose this year’s finalists from all titles that earned a Kirkus Star with publication dates between November 1, 2013 and October 31, 2014.
The judges chose from 1,007 books total: 266 fiction; 225 nonfiction, 446 children/teens; and 70 self published Kirkus Star titles.
Kirkus will announce the winners at a ceremony in Austin Oct. 23, a few days before the Texas Book Festival kicks off. (Kirkus editor Clay Smith was for many years the Texas Book Festival’s literary editor, a position now held by Steph Opitz.)
The finalists for the 2014 Kirkus Prize are:
· ” The Blazing World” by Siri Hustvedt (Simon & Schuster)
· “Euphoria” by Lily King (Atlantic Monthly Press)
· “All Our Names” by Dinaw Mengestu (Knopf)
· “Florence Gordon” by Brian Morton (Houghton Mifflin)
· “The Remedy for Love” by Bill Roorbach (Algonquin Books)
· “The Paying Guests” by Sarah Waters (Riverhead)
The judges for the 2014 Kirkus Prize in fiction are: author Kate Christensen, Stephanie Valdez, co-owner of Community Bookstore and Terrace Books in Brooklyn, and Kirkus critic and author Marion Winik.
· “Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?” by Roz Chast (Bloomsbury)
· “Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World” by Leo Damrosch (Yale University Press)
· “The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History” by Elizabeth Kolbert (Holt)
· “The Lagoon: How Aristotle Invented Science” by Armand Marie Leroi (Viking)
· “Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty” (Harvard University Press)
· “Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption” by Bryan Stevenson (Spiegel & Grau)
The judges for the 2014 Kirkus Prize in Nonfiction are: Sarah Bagby, owner of Watermark Books & Café in Wichita, KS, author Sloane Crosley, and Kirkus critic and author Gregory McNamee.
YOUNG READERS’ LITERATURE:
· “The Right Word: Roget and His Thesauru”s by Jen Bryant and Melissa Sweet (Eerdmans)
· “Aviary Wonders Inc.: Spring Catalog and Instruction Manual” by Kate Samworth (Clarion)
· “El Deafo” by Cece Bell (Amulet/Abrams)
· “The Key That Swallowed Joey Pigza” by Jack Gantos (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
· “The Story of Owen, Dragon Slayer of Trondheim” by E.K. Johnston (Carolrhoda Lab)
· ” The Freedom Summer Murders” by Don Mitchell (Scholastic)
The judges for the 2014 Kirkus Prize in Young Readers’ Literature are: Claudette S. McLinn, executive director at the Center for the Study of Multicultural Children’s Literature, author Linda Sue Park, Kirkus critic and children’s librarian John Edward Peters.