Thursday, February 25, 2010

Reader's Notes for February

The 2009 finalists for the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes have been announced. Winners will be awarded before the Los Angeles Time Festivals of Books on April 23, 2010. In addition to ten book categories, author, editor, and publisher Dave Eggers will be given a new Innovator’s Award, and novelist, short story author Evan S. Connell will receive Robert Kirsch Lifetime Achievement award. The finalists are:

Kirstin Downey, The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life of Frances Perkins, FDR’s Secretary of Labor and His Moral Conscience
Linda Gordon, Dorothea Lange: A Life Beyond Limits
Michael Scammell, Koestler: The Literary and Political Odyssey of a Twentieth Century Skeptic
Melvin Urofsky, Louis D. Brandeis: A Life
Kenneth Whyte, The Uncrowned King: The Sensational Rise of William Randolph Hearst

Current Interest
Dave Cullen, Columbine
Dave Eggers, Zeitoun
Tracy Kidder, The Strength in What Remains
Nicholas D. Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
T.R. Reid, The Healing of America: The Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Healthcare

Jill Ciment, Heroic Measures
Jane Gardam, The Man in the Wooden Hat
Michelle Huneven, Blame
Kate Walbert, A Short History of Women
Rafael Yglesias, A Happy Marriage

Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction
Petina Gappah, An Elegy for Easterly
Paul Harding, Tinkers
Philipp Meyer, American Rust
Daniyal Mueenuddin, In Other Rooms, Other Wonders
Wells Tower, Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned

Graphic Novel
Gilbert Hernandez, Luba (A Love and Rockets Book)
Taiyo Matsumoto, GoGo Monster
David Mazzucchelli, Asterios Polyp
Bryan Lee O’Malley, Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 5: Scott Pilgrim vs. the Universe
Joe Sacco, Footnotes in Gaza

Richard Holmes, Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science
Martha A. Sandweiss, Passing Strange: A Gilded Age Tale of Love and Deception Across the Color Line
Kevin Starr, Golden Dreams: California in an Age of Abundance 1950 – 1963
Amy Louise Wood, Lynching and Spectacle: Witnessing Racial Violence in America, 1890-1940

Gordon S. Wood, Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic 1789 – 1815

Mystery / Thriller
Megan Abbott, Bury Me Deep
David Ellis, The Hidden Man
Attica Locke, Black Water Rising
Val McDermid, A Darker Domain
Stuart Neville, The Ghosts of Belfast

Gabrielle Calvocoressi, Apocalyptic Swing
Amy Gerstler, Dearest Creature
Tom Healy, What the Right Hand Knows
Brenda Hillman, Practical Water
Lyrae Van Clief-Stefanon, Open Interval

Science & Technology
Marcia Bartusiak, The Day We Found the Universe
Graham Farmelo, The Strangest Man: The Hidden Life of Paul Dirac, Mystic of the Atom
Bill Streever, Cold: Adventures in the Worlds’ Frozen Places
Richard Wrangham, Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human
Carol Kaesuk Yoon, Naming Nature: The Clash Between Instinct and Science

Young Adult Literature
James Cross Giblin, The Rise and Fall of Senator Joe McCarthy
Frances Hardinge, The Lost Conspiracy
Deborah Heiligman, Charles and Emma: The Darwin’s Leap of Faith
Elizabeth Partridge, Marching for Freedom: Walk Together Children and Don’t You Grow Weary
Shaun Tan, Tales from Outer Suburbia

Authors Lost in February

Poet and children's writer, Lucille Clifton, 73

Horse racing mystery novelist Dick Francis, 89

"Mystery writing powerhouse Dick Francis first came to the public eye as a victim in one of the most unusual sports mishaps of the century. The incident happened just after Francis, then a jockey, and his horse headed towards the finish post, after having just cleared the last jump at the Grand National. The Grand National is a British steeplechase race considered by many to be the world's most prestigious horse racing event, and Francis was riding Devon Loch, the Queen Mother's horse. Suddenly and inexplicably, the horse that had seemed destined to win collapsed, and would not complete the race. Francis never figured out what startled his horse that day, but that singular occurrence turned into a triumph than the seasoned jockey could never have imagined the morning of the race. The accident actually marked the beginning of his writing career." "Dick Francis." Authors and Artists for Young Adults. Vol. 21. Gale Research, 1997. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center through Glendale Public Library Online Resources.

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