A Double Honor: THE HEAVEN & EARTH GROCERY STORE Now Amazon Book of the Year, B&N Book of the Year


James McBride, Photo Credit: Chia Messina.

Riverhead Books had two big reasons to cheer this week: THE HEAVEN & EARTH GROCERY STORE by James McBride has been selected by both Barnes & Noble and Amazon as their Book of the Year. This honor is especially sweet, as James McBride is a longtime, beloved house author who has spent his entire writing career at Penguin Random House. 

James McBride getting ready for a book signing.

Riverhead Books first published James McBride in 1995 with the now-classic memoir THE COLOR OF WATER, which has sold millions of copies worldwide and is a staple in classrooms, book clubs, and community reading groups. McBride has gone on to publish eight bestselling books, including other blockbusters like the 2020 Oprah Book Club pick DEACON KING KONG and the 2013 National Book Award winner THE GOOD LORD BIRD. Additionally, McBride has been awarded the Carnegie Medal of Excellence for Fiction, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, the Kirkus Prize for Fiction, the Gotham Book Award, and many more prestigious prizes. In 2016, President Obama awarded McBride the National Humanities Medal “for humanizing the complexities of discussing race in America.” Many of McBride’s books have been adapted to the screen, including MIRACLE AT ST. ANNA (a film by Spike Lee) and THE GOOD LORD BIRD (a Showtime series starring Ethan Hawke and Daveed Diggs). 

Rave reviews and praise from NYT & Wash Post.

THE HEAVEN & EARTH GROCERY STORE, edited by Riverhead Books Executive Editor Jake Morrissey, is an irresistible page-turner about love, community, and small town secrets that has been praised by Danez Smith in the New York Times as “a murder mystery locked inside a Great American Novel.” Ron Charles of The Washington Post said “we all need—we all deserve—this vibrant, love-affirming novel that bounds over any difference that claims to separate us.” Enormous displays and gorgeous window clings are currently being placed throughout Barnes & Noble stores nationwide, and will remain up throughout 2024. Amazon announced its selection of McBride as the #1 Book of the Year on CBS Mornings and followed up with an Amazon livestream interview, with further newsletter and blog support still to come. Thanks to this week’s monumental announcements from both Barnes & Noble and Amazon, hundreds of thousands of readers will now be discovering this amazing, hopeful novel. 


Posted: November 16, 2023