UPDATE: Oops: Wrong Nominee Announced for National Book Awards

National Book Award Oops


According to tweets from Publishers Weekly, Lauren Myracle  has withdrawn her NBA nomination at the National Book Foundation's request. She was asked to do so in order to "preserve the integrity of the award.” As consolation, the NBF has promised to donate $5000 to the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

Charitable mea culpa aside, is this a dick move on the part of the NBF?

via Huffington Post

The finalists for the 60th annual National Books Awards have been announced--and while there's usually five nominees to a category, Young People's Literature has six.

That's because the National Book Foundation, which administers the awards, announced the wrong book during a live broadcast.

Shine by Lauren Myracle was named as one of the five nominees, a spot that was actually supposed to go to Chime by Franny Billingsley. Drama isn't confined to the Oscars, it seems.  

Though, the National Book Foundation is leaving all six in the running for that category. Which is only fair. Can you imagine that phone call? "Hey, you were almost eligible for one of the most prestigious literary awards in the United States, second only to the Pulitzer. But not anymore! Here's an Amazon gift card." 

This is the full list of the nominees (at least, we think it's the full list):


  • Andrew Krivak, The Sojourn
  • Téa Obreht, The Tiger's Wife
  • Julie Otsuka, The Buddha in the Attic
  • Edith Pearlman, Binocular Vision
  • Jesmyn Ward, Salvage the Bones


  • Deborah Baker, The Convert: A Tale of Exile and Extremism
  • Mary Gabriel, Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution
  • Stephen Greenblatt, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern
  • Manning Marable, Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention
  • Lauren Redniss, Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie, A Tale of Love and Fallout


  • Nikky Finney, Head Off & Split
  • Yusef Komunyakaa, The Chameleon Couch
  • Carl Phillips, Double Shadow
  • Adrienne Rich, Tonight No Poetry Will Serve: Poems 2007-2010
  • Bruce Smith, Devotions


  • Franny Billingsley, Chime
  • Debby Dahl Edwardson, My Name Is Not Easy
  • Thanhha Lai, Inside Out and Back Again
  • Albert Marrin, Flesh and Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy
  • Lauren Myracle, Shine
  • Gary D. Schmidt, Okay for Now

I have not read any of these books.

To leave a comment Login with Facebook or create a free account.


Joshua Chaplinsky's picture
Joshua Chaplinsky from New York is reading a lot more during the quarantine October 14, 2011 - 2:37pm

Jack Palance is doing one-armed pushups in his grave.

Tina's picture
Tina is reading Drive, James Sallis October 14, 2011 - 2:51pm

Poor Marisa Tomei.

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. October 14, 2011 - 9:45pm

The Chronolgy of Water is the only Nonfiction book I'd even consider this year.  But I haven't read any of these nominations either.

Joshua Chaplinsky's picture
Joshua Chaplinsky from New York is reading a lot more during the quarantine October 14, 2011 - 10:56pm

It's a funny image, but the whole Marisa Tomei thing is actually an urban legend.

Chester Pane's picture
Chester Pane from Portland, Oregon is reading The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz October 15, 2011 - 8:05am

Happy accident. Some writers have all the luck.

@Bryan. I fucking second that Yuknavitch nomination. 

For more information on the Awards, which took place in Portland, Oregon at Literary Arts click this link to the Think Out Loud podcast.

Think Out Loud is an NPR radio talk show that broadcasts from Portland.

Bradley Sands's picture
Bradley Sands from Boston is reading Greil Marcus's The History of Rock 'N' Roll in Ten Songs October 20, 2011 - 4:42pm

Is there anyone else who thought, "Who the fuck are these people?" after reading the list of nominees?