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“JOHN OKADA” among winners of 2019 American Book Awards

We’ve just learned that JOHN OKADA is one of the winners of the 2019 American Book Awards. This honor is especially meaningful as it comes from the Before Columbus Foundation which, as its name suggests, recognizes “literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community” and is “a writers’ award given by other writers.”

Our thanks to Ishmael Reed, Justin Desmangles, and Shawn Wong for their lifetime of work to sustain the Foundation.

The Before Columbus Foundation announces the Winners of the Fortieth Annual AMERICAN BOOK AWARDS
Ceremonies, November 1, 2019, 1:00–4:00 p.m.

Oakland, CA—The Before Columbus Foundation announces the Winners of the Fortieth Annual AMERICAN BOOK AWARDS. The 2019 American Book Award winners will be formally recognized on Friday, November 1, 2019, from 1:00-4:00 p.m. at the Koret Auditorium, San Francisco Public Library, 100 Larkin St., San Francisco, CA. This event is open to the public.

The American Book Awards were created to provide recognition for outstanding literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community. The purpose of the awards is to recognize literary excellence without limitations or restrictions. There are no categories, no nominees, and therefore no losers. The award winners range from well-known and established writers to under-recognized authors and first works. There are no quotas for
diversity, the winners list simply reflects it as a natural process. The Before Columbus Foundation views American culture as inclusive and has always considered the term “multicultural” to be not a description of various categories, groups, or “special interests,” but
rather as the definition of all of American literature. The Awards are not bestowed by an industry organization, but rather are a writers’ award given by other writers.

The 2019 American Book Award Winners are:

Frank Abe, Greg Robinson, and Floyd Cheung (editors), John Okada: The Life & Rediscovered Work of the Author of No-No Boy (University of Washington Press)

May-lee Chai,  Useful Phases for Immigrants: Stories (Blair)

Louise DeSalvo, The House of Early Sorrows: A Memoir in Essays (Fordham University Press)

Heid E. Erdrich (editor),  New Poets of Native Nations (Graywolf Press)

Ángel García, Teeth Never Sleep: Poems (University of Arkansas Press)

Tommy Orange, There There: A Novel (Knopf)

Halifu Osumare, Dancing in Blackness: A Memoir (University Press of Florida)

Christopher Patton, Unlikeness Is Us: Fourteen from the Exeter Book (Gaspereau Press)

Mark Sarvas, Memento Park: A Novel (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

Jeffrey C. Stewart, The New Negro: The Life of Alain Locke (Oxford University Press)

William T. Vollmann, Carbon Ideologies: Volume I, No Immediate Danger, Volume II, No Good Alternative (Viking)

G. Willow Wilson (author), Nico Leon (illustrator), Ms. Marvel Vol. 9: Teenage Wasteland (Marvel)

Lifetime Achievement Award: Nathan Hare

Editor/Publisher Award: UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center

Oral Literature Award: Moor Mother (Camae Ayewa)

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