PEN Literary Awards

There’s a Book for That: PEN Literary Awards

PEN Center USA, The West Coast center of PEN International, which is the world’s oldest international literary and human rights organization, held their 27th annual Literary Awards last Friday, October 27 in Beverly Hills, California. Hosted by Nick Offerman, the ceremony honored Margaret Atwood with a Lifetime Achievement Award and winners in 8 categories were announced. Congratulations to all winners and finalists!

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WINNERS PEN Award for Creative Nonfiction: When Breath Becomes Air by Paul KalanithiWHEN BREATH BECOMES AIR by Paul Kalanithi, Abraham Verghese (Random House) Also a finalist for the Pulitzer, this deeply humane memoir by a young neurosurgeon faced with a terminal diagnosis attempts to answer the questions: given that all organisms die, what makes a meaningful life? And, as a doctor, what does it mean to hold mortal—and moral—responsibility for another person’s identity? For readers of Atul Gawande and Siddhartha Mukherjee.   PEN Award for Research Nonfiction: The Perfect Horse by Elizabeth LettsTHE PERFECT HORSE: THE DARING U.S. MISSION TO RESCUE THE PRICELESS STALLIONS KIDNAPPED BY THE NAZIS by Elizabeth Letts (Ballantine) The daring behind-Nazi-lines rescue of priceless pedigree horses by American soldiers in the closing days of World War Two—a riveting equine adventure story from the author of The Eighty-Dollar Champion.   PEN Award for Young Adult Fiction: Outrun the Moon by Stacey LeeOUTRUN THE MOON by Stacey Lee (Speak) Critically acclaimed author Stacey Lee continues to weave adventure and romance in a novel set during the 1906 San Francisco earthquake: A spot at St. Clare’s School is off limits for all but the wealthiest white girls. However, fifteen-year-old Mercy Wong knows that education is the best way out of Chinatown’s squalor.   FINALISTS The Association of Small Bombs by Karan MahajanTHE ASSOCIATION OF SMALL BOMBS: A NOVEL by Karan Mahajan (Viking) Also a finalist for the National Book Award, The Association of Small Bombs is an expansive and deeply humane novel that is at once groundbreaking in its empathy, dazzling in its acuity, and ambitious in scope.   Cockroaches by Scholastique MukasongaCOCKROACHES by Scholastique Mukasonga, translated by Jordan Stump (Archipelago) Scholastique Mukasonga’s Cockroaches is the story of growing up a Tutsi in Hutu-dominated Rwanda—the story of a happy child, a loving family, all wiped out in the genocide of 1994. A vivid, bittersweet depiction of family life and bond in a time of immense hardship, it is also a story of incredible endurance, and the duty to remember that loss and those lost while somehow carrying on.   For more on these titles visit the collection: PEN Awards 2017 Stay tuned for this week’s Friday Reads wherein we will honor the work of Margaret Atwood.  

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Our 4 2017 PEN Literary Awards Winners

PEN-America-logo-2016PEN America, the U.S. chapter of the world’s leading international literary-human rights organization, has announced the winners in selected categories for its 2017 Literary Awards, with titles published by Penguin Random House imprints winning for nonfiction, diversity, science and sports writing:

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PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction PEN winnersEVICTED: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond (Crown) PEN Open Book Award WHAT IS NOT YOURS IS NOT YOURS by Helen Oyeyemi (Riverhead Books) PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award PATIENT H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets by Luke Dittrich (Random House) PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing INDENTURED: The Inside Story of the Rebellion Against the NCAA by Joe Nocero and  Ben Strauss (Portfolio) Warm congratulations to all of our award-winning authors, their editors and publishers. To view the complete winners’ list announced today, click here. Additional 2017 PEN America Literary Awards recipients will be revealed at the PEN Ceremony March 27 at The New School’s Auditorium in NYC. PEN/Jean Stein Book Award KNOWN AND STRANGE THINGS by Teju Cole (Random House) THE RETURN: Fathers, Sons, and the Land in Between by Hisham Matar (Random House) DARK MONEY: The Hidden History of The Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right by Jane Mayer (Doubleday) THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD by Colson Whitehead (Doubleday) PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction THE MOTHERS by Brit Bennett (Riverhead Books) HOMEGOING by Yaa Gyasi  (Alfred A Knopf) PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay KNOWN AND STRANGE THINGS by Teju Cole (Random House)

Our 16 PEN Literary Awards Shortlisters

PEN-America-logo-2016PEN America has announced the finalists for its 2017 Literary Awards in the categories of debut fiction, nonfiction, essay, diversity, science, sports writing, biography and translation. The 16 shortlisted titles published by Penguin Random House imprints are:

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PEN/Jean Stein Book Award: KNOWN AND STRANGE THINGS by Teju Cole (Random House) THE RETURN: Fathers, Sons, and the Land in Between by Hisham Matar (Random House) PEN1DARK MONEY: The Hidden History of The Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right by Jane Mayer (Doubleday) THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD by Colson Whitehead (Doubleday) PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction THE MOTHERS by Brit Bennett (Riverhead Books) HOMEGOING by Yaa Gyasi (Alfred A Knopf) PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction EVICTED: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond (Crown) CHILDREN OF PARADISE: The Struggle for the Soul of Iran by Laura Secor (Riverhead Books) PEN2BAD NEWS: Last Journalists in a Dictatorship by Anjan Sundaram (Doubleday) PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay KNOWN AND STRANGE THINGS by Teju Cole (Random House) PEN Open Book Award WHAT IS NOT YOURS IS NOT YOURS by Helen Oyeyemi (Riverhead Books) PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award PATIENT H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets by Luke Dittrich (Random House) HOW TO MAKE A SPACESHIP: A Band of Renegades, an Epic Race, and the Birth of a Private Spaceflight by Julian Guthrie (Penguin Press) PEN3LAB GIRL by Hope Jahren (Alfred A. Knopf) PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing INDENTURED: The Inside Story of the Rebellion Against the NCAA by Joe Nocera and  Ben Strauss (Portfolio) PEN Translation Prize THE VEGETARIAN by Han Kang; translated from the Korean by Deborah Smith (Hogarth/Crown Publishing Group) Warm congratulations to all of our shortlisted authors, their editors and publishers. Of particular note: Random House author Teju Cole is the first writer in PEN America’s history to be a finalist in two categories! To view the complete 2017 PEN Literary Awards shortlists, click here. Most of the winners will be revealed on February 22. The awards for debut fiction and essay as well as those for the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award and the PEN/Nabokov Award will be named live at the 2017 PEN America Literary Awards Ceremony on March 27 at The New School’s Auditorium in NYC. PEN America is the U.S. branch of the world’s leading international literary and human rights organization. International PEN was founded in 1921 in direct response to the ethnic and national divisions that contributed to the First World War. PEN American Center was founded in 1922 and is the largest of the 144 PEN centers in 101 countries that together compose International PEN.