Book Awards: June 2009 Archives

Local authors among Great Lakes finalists

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Among the finalists for the 2009 Great Lakes Book Awards are several Chicago area authors. To be eligible for the Great Lakes Book Awards, books must have a Great Lakes theme or setting or be written by an author living in the region and have been published between June 2008 and the end of May 2009. The winners will be announced in late August and awards presented in October in Cleveland. Following is a list of all finalists. (Local authors' books marked with *)

* Dark Places by Gillian Flynn (Random House)
* The Great Perhaps by Joe Meno (W.W. Norton)
A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill)
* Starvation Lake by Bryan Gruley (Simon & Schuster)
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski (Harper Collins)

Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs, and Parenting by Michael Perry (Harper Collins)
* The Foie Gras Wars by Mark Caro (Simon & Schuster)
Horse Soldiers by Doug Stanton (Simon & Schuster)
* Ripped by Greg Kot (Simon & Schuster)
A Splintered History of Wood by Spike Carlsen (Harper Collins)

After the Trains by Gloria Whelan (Harper Collins)
* The Blind Faith Hotel by Pamela Todd (Simon & Schuster)
* I Put a Spell on You by Adam Selzer (Random House)
Knucklehead by Jon Scieszka (Penguin Group)
* The Lincolns: A Scrapbook Look at Abraham and Mary by Candace Fleming (Random House)
My Brother Abe: Sally Lincoln's Story by Harry Mazer (Simon & Schuster)

Baby Dragon by Amy Ehrlich and Will Hillenbrand (Illus.) (Candlewick Press)
Birds by Kevin Henkes and Laura Dronzek (Illus.), (Harper Collins)
Old Bear by Kevin Henkes (Harper Collins)
That Book Woman by Heather Henson and David Small (Illus.) (Simon & Schuster)
The Underwear Salesman by J. Patrick Lewis and Serge Bloch (Illus.) (Simon & Schuster)

Teen panel picks its own Orange Prize winner

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blonde roots

Bernardine Evaristo's novel Blonde Roots did not make the short list for this year's Orange Prize, but The Guardian reports today that a panel of teenagers has selected it as an alternative winner.

Six teens, age 16-19 chose their own short list from the 20 titles on the long list, and then selected their own winner. Other titles on the teens' short list included: Girl in a Blue Dress by Gaynor Arnold; The Lost Dog by Michelle de Kretser; Mercy by Toni Morrison; The Russian Dreambook of Colour and Flight by Gina Oscher, and The Flying Troutmans by Miriam Toews.

The Orange Prize is one of the UK's most presigious literary prizes, awarded to the best full-length novel by a female author of any nationality. The prize is 30,000 pounds (about $50,000). The prize will be awarded tonight.

Read the Sun-Times' review of Blonde Roots, which reimagines the slave trade when a white European girl is kidnapped and forced into slavery by her "Aphrikan" masters.