Rodriguez and Betts among winners of Los Angeles Times Book Prizes
The 42nd annual Los Angeles Times Book Awards were presented Friday night at USC’s Bovard Auditorium. The Book Awards are dedicated to literary excellence, championing new voices and celebrating the highest quality of writing by authors at all stages of their careers.
The ceremony honored 12 outstanding literary works published last year. Luis J. Rodriguez received the Robert Kirsch Lifetime Achievement Award, and Reginald Dwayne Betts received the Innovator Award for his work promoting literacy in prisons by improving access to books, writers and performing artists.
The book awards ceremony is a prologue to this weekend’s Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, the nation’s largest literary and cultural festival. The event on USC’s University Park campus brings together more than 500 writers, musicians, artists and conductors, hundreds of exhibitors and approximately 150,000 attendees each year.
Other winners of the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes
• Art Seidenbaum Prize for first fiction: Jackie Polzin, Brood: a novel, Double day.
• Biography: Paul Auster, Burning Boy: The Life and Work of Stephen CraneHenry Holt & Company.
• Christopher Isherwood Prize for Autobiographical Prose: Deborah Levy, Real estate: a living autobiographyBloomsbury.
• Current interest: Adam Schiff, Midnight in Washington: How We Almost Lost Our Democracy and Still CouldRandom house.
• Fiction: Veronique Tadjo, In the company of menOther Press.
• Graphic novel/comic book: R.Kikuo Johnson, Nobody elseFantagraphies.
• Story: Ada Ferrer, Cuba: An American HistoryScribner.
• Mystery/Thriller: Megan Abbott, Participation: A Novelson of GP Putnam.
• Poetry: Diane Seuss, frank: sonnetsGraywolf Press.
• Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, Fantasy and Speculative Fiction: Zen Cho, Spirits abroad: stories, Small beer press.
• Science and technology: Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, The Messy Cosmos: A Journey Through Dark Matter, Spacetime, and Deferred DreamsBold type books.
• Literature for young adults: Rita Williams-Garcia, A session in Saint-JacquesQuill Tree Books/HarperCollins Children’s Books.
Visit the Times Book Awards website for more information on the book awards, including the full list of 2021 finalists and previous winners; eligibility and assessment information; and how to make a tax-deductible donation to support the annual literary awards.
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