The 2017 National Book Award Longlists!

Over this past week, the four longlists for the 2017 National Book Award were announced, concluding today with the fiction list. Here are the four lists!

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  • Dark at the Crossing, by Elliot Ackerman (
  • The King Is Always Above the People: Stories, by Daniel Alarcón (
  • Miss Burma, by Charmaine Craig (
  • Manhattan Beach, by Jennifer Egan (
  • The Leavers, by Lisa Ko (
  • Pachinko, by Min Jin Lee (
  • Her Body and Other Parties: Stories, by Carmen Maria Machado (
  • A Kind of Freedom, by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton (
  • Sing, Unburied, Sing, by Jesmyn Ward (
  • Barren Island, by Carol Zoref (

Fiction Judges: Alexander Chee, Dave Eggers, Annie Philbrick, Karolina Waclawiak, Jacqueline Woodson (Chair)


  • Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge, by Erica Armstrong Dunbar (
  • The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America, by Frances FitzGerald (
  • Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America, by James Forman, Jr. (
  • The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia, by Masha Gessen (
  • Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI, by David Grann (
  • No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need, by Naomi Klein (
  • Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America, by Nancy MacLean (
  • The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America, by Richard Rothstein (
  • The Blood of Emmett Till, by Timothy B. Tyson (
  • Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News, by Kevin Young (

Nonfiction Judges: Steve Bercu, Jeff Chang, Ruth Franklin, Paula J. Giddings (Chair), Valeria Luiselli


  • Half-Light: Collected Poems 1965 – 2016, by Frank Bidart (
  • When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities, by Chen Chen (
  • The Book of Endings, by Leslie Harrison (
  • Magdalene: Poems, by Marie Howe (
  • Where Now: New and Selected Poems, by Laura Kasischke (
  • WHEREAS, by Layli Long Soldier (
  • In the Language of My Captor, by Shane McCrae (
  • Square Inch Hours, by Sherod Santos (
  • Don’t Call Us Dead: Poems, by Danez Smith (
  • Afterland, by Mai Der Vang (

Poetry Judges: Nick Flynn, Jane Mead, Gregory Pardio, Richard Siken, Monica Youn (Chair)

Young People’s Literature

  • What Girls Are Made Of, by Elana K. Arnold (
  • Far from the Tree, by Robin Benway (
  • All the Wind in the World, by Samantha Mabry (
  • You Bring the Distant Near, by Mitali Perkins (
  • Long Way Down, by Jason Reynolds (
  • I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, by Erika L. Sánchez (
  • Orphan Island, by Laurel Snyder (
  • The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas (
  • Clayton Byrd Goes Underground, by Rita Williams-Garcia (
  • American Street, by Ibi Zoobi (

Young People’s Literature Judges: Suzanna Hermans, Brendan Kiely, Kekla Magoon, Meg Medina (Chair), Alex Sanchez

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By | 2017-09-15T16:26:57+00:00 September 15th, 2017|Categories: News|4 Comments


  1. David September 15, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Looking at the fiction list, I see ten novels I don’t think I have heard of before. I looked up information on a few of them. It always seems strange to me when a book is nominated for a major prize before it is published. It seems counterproductive to me to miss out on sales they could get from the enthusiasm of being on the longlist, especially for the books for which this is the end of the awards road. A few months ago Naomi Alderman won the Baileys Prize for her book The Power. It was published in 2016 in the UK, but in Canada and the US it still isn’t out. (Well, it is available for Kindle, but not on paper.) We have to wait until October 10th for it.
    Carmen Maria Machado’s book is one that has not been published yet, but since it is a collection of stories I thought I might be able to find some of them. It seems that both “The Husband Stitch” (Granta) and “Especially Heinous” (The American Reader) are in the book and can be read online (for free!) right now. The links to both can be found on Machado’s website. It’s funny that she calls them both “novellas”. “Especially Heinous” is about 50 pages, so that seems fine, but “The Husband Stitch” is less than 25 pages, making it no longer than a lot of short stories. Anyway, the good news is that anyone who has not read her and wants to check her book out does not need to wait for it to be published. Her website also has links to other short stories, but I have not checked any of them to see if they are in this book as well.
    Mentioning Alderman reminds me that when the Baileys Prize was announced I wondered about the need for a prize especially for woman writers. Looking at the NBA list I see 8 of the 10 authors are women. I have no complaint about the Baileys Prize – it is how I heard of Alderman and I have already since then read her excellent debut novel, Disobedience – but it does seem to be less necessary than it was when it was first created.

  2. Trevor Berrett September 15, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Yes, it can be frustrating to want to jump on some of these books without having them available. I think it’s all a mix of the big publishing season that is the fall, with book prizes and publishers wanting to capitalize on the September/October season all at the same time

    Thanks so much for pointing out where we can find some of Carmen Maria Machado’s stories!

  3. Lee Monks September 18, 2017 at 6:30 am

    I know very little about most of these! Always good. Daniel Alarcon is certainly a real talent.

  4. David September 18, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    Today, the day after Margaret Atwood (a past winner of the Booker Prize and the Giller Prize, among others) dominated the Emmy Awards, the longlist for the Giller Prize (Canada) was announced. I thought I would put the list here for anyone interested. I have not read anything by any of these authors, but some of these sound quite interesting:

    – David Chariandy – Brother
    – Rachel Cusk – Transit
    – David Demchuk – The Bone Mother
    – Joel Thomas Hynes – We’ll All Be Burnt in Our Beds Some Night
    – Andrée A. Michaud – Boundary
    – Josip Novakovich – Tumbleweed
    – Ed O’Loughlin – Minds of Winter
    – Zoey Leigh Peterson – Next Year, For Sure
    – Michael Redhill – Bellevue Square
    – Eden Robinson – Son of a Trickster
    – Deborah Willis – The Dark and Other Love Stories
    – Michelle Winters – I Am a Truck

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