2023 National Book Awards Finalists Announced
Five books were selected from the longlist (which in turn has been formed out of 496 submissions) for the Fiction category:
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, Chain-Gang All-Stars Pantheon Books / Penguin Random House
Aaliyah Bilal, Temple Folk Simon & Schuster
Paul Harding, This Other Eden W. W. Norton & Company
Hanna Pylväinen, The End of Drum-Time Henry Holt and Company / Macmillan Publishers
Justin Torres, Blackouts Farrar, Straus and Giroux / Macmillan Publishers
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah’s dystopian novel Chain-Gang All-Stars simulates a private for-profit prison system where prisoners compete for freedom in live-broadcast gladiator-inspired death matches. Aaliyah Bilal’s debut short story collection, Temple Folk, examines the diversity of the Black Muslim experience in America.Paul Harding’s novel This Other Eden traces the legacy of a mixed-race fishing community living on a secluded island off the coast of Maine from 1792 to the early 20th century. In Hanna Pylväinen’sThe End of Drum-Time, a Lutheran minister’s daughter falls in love with a native Sámi reindeer herder and joins the herders on their annual migration to the sea in 1850s Scandinavia. Justin Torres’s Blackouts considers the multigenerational gaps in personal and collective queer histories through the real-life inspiration of Sex Variants: A Study of Homosexual Patterns.
The Winners will be announced live on Wednesday, November 15 at the invitation-only 74th National Book Awards Ceremony & Benefit Dinner.