Summer Reading? Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize Longlist

Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize

Summer Reading? Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize Longlist

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Looking for summer reading? Check out the long list for the Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize.

Each year the Brooklyn Public Library, in collaboration with the Brooklyn Eagles, recognizes outstanding works of nonfiction and fiction with a prize given in the fall.

With this year’s prize, the BPL will highlight books which—by subverting literary forms, pushing against established ways of thinking, or otherwise introducing new or challenging ideas—speak to the Library’s ideals. This will connect the prize to the Library’s mission to create a welcoming environment in which all members of the borough’s diverse community—one of the most socially and culturally complex in the country—can come together to contemplate urgent social, political and artistic questions.

The list includes In the Darkroom by Susan Faludi, a writer that I had the pleasure to work with on a feminist magazine. When the feminist writer learned that her 76-year-old father--long estranged and living in Hungary--had undergone sex reassignment surgery, that investigation would turn personal and urgent. How was this new parent who claimed to be "a complete woman now" connected to the silent, explosive, and ultimately violent father she had known?

On the fiction end, The Impossible Fairy Tale by Yujoo Han, tells the story of two unexceptional grade-school girls. Mia is "lucky"she is spoiled by her mother and, as she explains, her two fathers. She gloats over her exotic imported color pencils and won't be denied a coveted sweater. Then there is the Child who, by contrast, is neither lucky nor unlucky. She makes so little impression that she seems not even to merit a name.

BPL Librarians have always played a central role in determining the prize winners, and their voices will be amplified even more this year. The nominees and longlists are selected by a committee of librarians and the shortlists are determined by two panels comprised of librarians from branches across the borough. Librarians also serve alongside prominent authors and cultural leaders to determine the two winners, who each receive $2,500.

Read the books and make your own decisions!

2017 Brooklyn Literary Prize Longlist Nonfiction

Hostage by Guy Delisle (Drawn & Quarterly)

In the Darkroom by Susan Faludi (Picador)

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann (Doubleday)

Age of Anger: A History of the Present by Pankaj Mishra (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

Fear City: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics by Kim Phillips-Fein (Metropolitan Books)

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain by Phoebe Robinson (Plume)

The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America by Richard Rothstein (Liveright Publishing)

Conflict is Not Abuse: Overstating Harm, Community Responsibility and the Duty of Repair by Sarah Schulman (Arsenal Pulp Press)

2017 Brooklyn Literary Prize Longlist Fiction

What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky: Stories by Lesley Nneka Arimah (Riverhead Books)

Exit West: A Novel by Mohsin Hamid (Riverhead Books)

The Lesser Bohemians: A Novel by Eimear McBride (Hogarth)

IRL by Tommy Pico (Birds, LLC)

Black Wave by Michelle Tea (Feminist Press)

Reputations: A Novel by Juan Gabriel Vásquez
(Riverhead Books, translated by Anne McLean)

The Impossible Fairy Tale by Han Yujoo (Graywolf Press, trans. by Janet Hong)

The Book of Joan: A Novel by Lidia Yuknavitch

Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize Long List of Fiction and Nonfiction
Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize Long List of Fiction and Nonfiction