The pages in our copies of this evocative novel about a young woman isolated by geography and her secretive past are dogeared because the prose is just that beautiful. Wyld's beguiling narrative voice, ferocious sense of place, and her careful unspooling of Jake Whyte's story make for the kind of novel we love to read - and re-read. Read what our judges have to say here.
A collection of breathtaking short stories about assimilation and dislocation, longing and belonging. These characters pulse with loneliness and denial, desire and expectation, and so we follow their stories -- rooting for some, testing our compassion for others -- as we would our own. Read what our judges have to say here.
Suffused with compassion and razor-sharp, these ambitious short stories explore the effects of battlefields - some emotional, some resolutely physical - on humanity. Hemenway illuminates the inner working of his characters in settings ranging from the commonplace to the otherworldly, and the results are unforgettable. Read what our judges have to say here.
Nonfiction - 1st Place
Badluck Way: A Year on the Ragged Edge of the West
A modern-day Montana cattle hand movingly describes how it really feels to live in the borderlands between wilderness and civilization. Our panel of Nonfiction judges - Malcolm Jones, Pagan Kennedy and Hector Tobar -- calls Badluck Way "spare and beautiful," "great storytelling," and "haunting and unforgettable." Read more from our judges here.
Nonfiction - 2nd Place
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory
With humor and compassion, a young licensed mortician demystifies the topic that none of us can avoid. Our nonfiction judges describe Smoke Gets in Your Eyes as a "pitch-perfect meditation," "hilarious and thought-provoking," and, pardon the pun, "dead-on smart." Read more from our judges here.
Nonfiction - 3rd Place
Untamed: The Wildest Woman in America and the Fight for Cumberland Island
As much a study of a changing community and all its inhabitants - human and animal - as it is a biography of a fearless, self-taught scientist (who knows more about sea turtles than most experts) and the lengths she'll go to protect what she believes in. Read more from our judges on this "beautiful paradox of a book."