Spring Book Awards Season Revs Up

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Here's a look at some of the book awards winners and finalists announced in the past week.

The National Book Critics Circle Award Winners

On Thursday, March 11, at the New School's Tishman auditorium in New York, the National Book Critics Circle announced its award winners for the 2009 publishing year.

The NBCC winners are:

  • Fiction: Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (Holt)
  • General Nonfiction: The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science by Richard Holmes (Pantheon)
  • Biography: Cheever: A Life by Blake Bailey (Knopf)
  • Autobiography: Somewhere Towards the End by Diana Athill (W.W. Norton)
  • Poetry: Versed by Rae Armantrout (Wesleyan University Press)
  • Criticism: Notes From No Man's Land: American Essays by Eula Biss (Graywolf)

Joan Acocella was awarded the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing, and Joyce Carol Oates was presented the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Dilys Award Winner

The Independent Mystery Booksellers Association has honored The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley (Delacorte) with this year's Dilys Award. The award is named in honor of Dilys Winn, the founder of the first specialty bookseller of mystery books in the United States, and is given to the mystery title of the year that member booksellers have most enjoyed selling.

The James Tiptree Jr. Award Winners
On March 17, the James Tiptree, Jr. Literary Award Council (www.tiptree.org) announced two winners of the 2009 Tiptree Award, an annual literary prize for science fiction or fantasy that expands or explores our understanding of gender: Greer Gilman's trilogy of interconnected stories, Cloud & Ashes: Three Winter's Tales (Small Beer Press) and Fumi Yoshinaga's alternate-history manga, Ooku: The Inner Chambers (volumes 1 & 2) (VIZ Media).

The Tiptree Award winners will be celebrated on Memorial Day weekend at WisCon in Madison, Wisconsin. Each winner will receive $1000 in prize money, an original artwork created specifically for the winning novel or story, and (as always) chocolate.

The Publishing Triangle Awards Finalists

On March 17, The Publishing Triangle announced the finalists for best lesbian and gay fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and debut fiction published in 2009.

Finalists for the Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction

  • Rebecca Brown, American Romances (City Lights)
  • Mary Cappello, Called Back (Alyson Books)
  • Joan Schenkar, The Talented Miss Highsmith (St. Martin's)

Finalists for the Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction

  • James Davidson, The Greeks and Greek Love (Random House)
  • Chap Heap, Slumming: Sexual and Racial Encounters in American Nightlife, 1885 - 1940 (University of Chicago Press)
  • David Plante, The Pure Lover (Beacon Press)

For the full list of finalists, visit www.publishingtriangle.org.

The 22nd annual Triangle Awards will be presented on April 29 at the Tishman Auditorium of the New School for Social Research in New York City. The ceremony is free and open to the public, with a reception to follow.

The 2009 Lambda Awards Finalists

The Lambda Literary Foundation announced the 2009 Lambda Award finalists. There were 113 LGBT-interest titles in 23 categories. "This has been a record year for queer books," said the 2009 Lambda Awards Administrator, Richard Labonté. "The number of titles nominated and the number of publishers represented is in both cases about 10 per cent higher than last year." The finalists include:

Lesbian Fiction

  • Dismantled, by Jennifer McMahon (HarperCollins)
  • A Field Guide to Deception, by Jill Malone (Bywater Books)
  • Forgetting the Alamo, Or, Blood Memory, by Emma Pérez (University of Texas Press)
  • Risk, by Elana Dykewomon (Bywater Books)
  • This One's Going to Last Forever, by Nairne Holtz (Insomniac Press)

Gay Fiction

  • Lake Overturn, by Vestal McIntyre (HarperCollins)
  • The River In Winter, by Matt Dean (Queens English Productions)
  • Said and Done, by James Morrison (Black Lawrence Press)
  • Salvation Army, by Abdellah Taia (Semiotext(e))
  • Silverlake, by Peter Gadol (Tyrus Books)

For a full list of finalists, visit www.lambdaliterary.org.

Winners will be announced at the22nd Annual Awards on May 27 in New York at the School of Visual Arts Theater in New York City.