Jesmyn Ward, Min Jin Lee among finalists for U.S. National Book Awards

The $10,000 awards, given in fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young people's literature, honour the best in American writing.
Min Jin Lee (left) and Jesmyn Ward are among the finalists for the 2017 National Book Awards. ( Sheehan)

Min Jin Lee and Jesmyn Ward are among the finalists for the 2017 National Book Awards. 

The annual American award honours the best in U.S. literature in the categories of fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young people's literature. Each winner receive $10,000 U.S. ($12,487.51 Cdn).

Lee's novel Pachinko is nominated in the fiction category. The book chronicles the lives of a Korean family forced from their homeland. 

Ward's Sing, Unburied, Sing, also nominated in the fiction category, follows a family's struggle to remain hopeful while dealing with addiction, incarceration and failing health. She won the National Book Award for fiction in 2011 for her novel Salvage the Bones

Find the full lists of finalists below. The winners will be announced on Nov. 15, 2017.


  • Dark at the Crossing by Elliot Ackerman
  • The Leavers by Lisa Ko
  • Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
  • Her Body and Other Parties: Stories by Carmen Maria Machado
  • Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward


  • 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
  • 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
  • Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America by Nancy MacLean


  • Half-light: Collected Poems 1965-2016 by Frank Bidart
  • The Book of Endings by Leslie Harrison
  • WHEREAS by Layli Long Soldier
  • In the Language of My Captor by Shane McCrae
  • Don't Call Us Dead: Poems by Danez Smith

Young people's literature:

  • What Girls Are Made Of by Elana K. Arnold
  • Far from the Tree by Robin Benway
  • I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez
  • Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by Rita Williams-Garcia
  • American Street by Ibi Zoboi


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