The National Book Award Foundation announced their finalists for one of literature’s most prestigious prizes: The 2018 National Book Award. Only five authors in each category (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, translated literature, and young people’s literature) made the final cut, and the winners will be announced on November 14th.
There was steep competition in the fiction category: Critically acclaimed works like There, There by Tommy Orange and An American Marriage by Tayari Jones made the longlist but not the final five. Here are the authors whose books nabbed a spot as a finalist:
A Lucky Man by Jamel Brinkley
Imagine having your first-ever book be longlisted for the National Book Award…and now shortlisted. That’s exactly what happened to Brinkley, a former Bread Loaf attendee and a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ workshop whose work has appeared in The Best American Short Stories 2018, Ploughshares, and Glimmer Train, among other publications. In A Lucky Man, “Each story is a trenchant exploration of race and class, vividly conveying the tension between social codes of masculinity and the vulnerable, volatile self,” praises the New Yorker. Expect Brinkley to continue generating buzz in the literary community for years to come.