These past few months have been a whirlwind of exciting awards news for BOA authors and titles! On Friday, October 23, poet Geffrey Davis (Revising the Storm, 2014) attended the 2015 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award ceremony in Washington, DC, where he was honored with the 2015 Hurston/Wright Finalist Award for poetry. Only one winner and one finalist were selected for each category. The 2015 poetry judges were Chris Abani, Alison Joseph, and Monica Hand. Here is what they have to say about Revising the Storm: "A finely wright meditative collection that calls to mind poets such as Carl Phillips and Jay Wright—yet, with his own concerns, and his own elegant phrasing. There's a classic feel to his poetry—yet he doesn't feel staid or stodgy in his lines or stanzas. It is a book that wears its poetic finesse lightly." Just this past Monday, November 16, author Robert Thomas (Bridge, 2014) accepted his 2015 PEN Center USA Literary Award for Fiction at the 25th annual Literary Awards Festival in Beverly Hills. A judges' statement by Cynthia Sweeney, Melanie Thorne, and Andrew Tonkovich says: "In Bridge, Robert Thomas constructs, with urgency and crackling, unrelenting energy, a story told with the contradictory self-doubt and wild self-awareness of a bright, sardonic, and potentially self-destructive young woman. Even as we appreciate her tenuous existential dilemma, Alice’s vivid internal construction of an overwhelming worldview in short diaristic episodes seems, in its very creation, to keep her alive. Considering how easily readers might have felt claustrophobic within, or limited by Alice’s point of view—interior, unraveling—it is singularly impressive that Thomas manages—through the beauty of his prose, sophistication of his references, and propulsive energy of Alice’s mind—to connect the reader, and the narrator’s struggle, with the outside world. Although Alice’s beautiful and dangerous estrangement is entirely and selfishly her own, it becomes ours, and teaches us something larger and universal. This novel is an experiential wonder, giddy and joyful reading via the desperate empathy it both demands and models. The digressive, perfectly choreographed role of docent to everyday madness, as played by our heroine, is a brave pleasure in word and sentence, a totally pleasing combination of narrator and authorial, artistic self-control, and vividly evocative self-consciousness." Congratulations to both Geffrey and Robert on these tremendous achievements! Revising the Storm and Bridge are both available at the BOA Bookstore.
- Categories: Uncategorized