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Here are the finalists for the 2020-21 L.A. Times Book Prize.

Rasheeda Saka

March 2, 2021, 11:39am

Today the Los Angeles Times announced the finalists for its 2020-21 Book Prize, which recognizes and honors outstanding literary work published in the last year.

The 55 finalists were selected across 11 categories—Biography, Current Interest, Fiction, Graphic Novels/Comics, History, Mystery/Thriller, Poetry, Science & Technology, First Fiction, Science & Fantasy & Speculative Fiction, and Young Adult Literature—and the winners will be announced in a live-streamed virtual ceremony on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter on April 16, the day before the 26th Los Angeles Times Festival of Books kicks off its second virtual event during the ongoing pandemic.

Congrats to all!

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2020-21 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalists

BIOGRAPHY

Les Payne and Tamara Payne, The Dead Are Arising: The Life of Malcolm X

Heather Clark, Red Comet: The Short Life and Blazing Art of Sylvia Plath

Blake Gopnik, Warhol

David Michaelis, Eleanor

William Souder, Mad at the World: A Life of John Steinbeck

 

CURRENT INTEREST

Brittany K. Barnett, A Knock at Midnight: A Story of Hope, Justice, and Freedom

Karla Cornejo Villavicencio, The Undocumented Americans

Christine Montross, Waiting for an Echo: The Madness of American Incarceration

Jacob Soboroff, Separated: Inside An American Tragedy

Isabel Wilkerson, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents

 

FICTION

Peter Cameron, What Happens at Night

David Diop (trans., Anna Moschovakis), At Night All Blood is Black

Akwaeke Emezi, The Death of Vivek Oji

Danielle Evans, The Office of Historical Corrections: A Novella and Stories

Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Likes

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL/COMICS 

Yeon-sik Hong (trans., Janet Hong), Umma’s Table

Kaito, Blue Flag (Vol. 1-4)

Ben Passmore, Sports Is Hell

Bishakh Som, Apsara Engine

Jim Terry, Come Home, Indio: A Memoir

 

HISTORY

Alice L. Baumgartner, South to Freedom: Runaway Slaves to Mexico and the Road to the Civil War

Adam Goodman, The Deportation Machine: America’s Long History of Expelling Immigrants

Walter Johnson, The Broken Heart of America: St. Louis and the Violent History of the United States

Martha S. Jones, Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All

David Vine, The United States of War: A Global History of America’s Endless Conflicts, From Columbus to the Islamic State

 

MYSTERY/THRILLER

Christopher Bollen, A Beautiful Crime

S.A. Cosby, Blacktop Wasteland

Jennifer Hillier, Little Secrets: A Novel

Rachel Howzell Hall, And Now She’s Gone

Ivy Pochoda, These Women: A Novel

 

POETRY

Victoria Chang, Obit

Anthony Cody, Borderland Apocrypha

Natalie Diaz, Postcolonial Love Poem

Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, The Age of Phillis

Nikky Finney, Love Child’s Hotbed of Occasional Poetry: Poems and Artifacts

 

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Brian Christian, The Alignment Problem: Machine Learning and Human Values

Lulu Miller, Why Fish Don’t Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life

Ainissa Ramirez, The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another

Sara Seager, The Smallest Lights in the Universe: A Memoir

Patrik Svensson, The Book of Eels: Our Enduring Fascination with the Most Mysterious Creature in the Natural World

 

THE ART SEIDENBAUM AWARD FOR FIRST FICTION

Douglas Stuart, Shuggie Bain

Maisy Card, These Ghosts Are Family: A Novel

Meng Jin, Little Gods

Deesha Philyaw, The Secret Lives of Church Ladies

Shruti Swamy, A House is a Body: Stories

 

THE RAY BRADBURY PRIZE FOR SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, AND SPECULATIVE FICTION

Susanna Clarke, Piranesi

Megan Giddings, Lakewood: A Novel

Stephen Graham Jones, The Only Good Indians

N.K. Jemisin, The City We Became: A Novel

Aoko Matsuda (trans., Polly Barton), Where the Wild Ladies Are

 

YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE

Dean Atta, The Black Flamingo

Tracy Deonn, Legendborn

Yusef Salaam and Ibi Zoboi, Punching the Air

Karen Schneemann and Lily Williams, Go With the Flow

Allan Wolf, The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep: Voices From the Donner Party

[h/t L.A. Times]

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