Susan Straight, John Green Chosen for Honors at 34th Annual Los Angeles Times Book Prizes

Finalists Announced for This Year’s Awards

Los Angeles Times Festival of Books 2014

LOS ANGELES--()--Today the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes announced the honorees for this year’s Kirsch Award for lifetime achievement, Innovator’s Award, and finalists in 10 categories that will be presented April 11th at the University of Southern California’s Bovard Auditorium. The event is the prelude to the 19th annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, the largest public literary festival in the nation, to be held on USC’s campus April 12th and 13th.

The recipient of the 2013 Robert Kirsch Award for lifetime achievement is Susan Straight, Professor of Creative Writing at UC Riverside, author of eight novels and two books for children, essayist, short story writer and reviewer.

“Susan Straight is a Southern California original and a tireless supporter, and creator, of our literary culture,” said Times book critic David L. Ulin. “Her novels opened up not just California literature but American literature to the Inland Empire and to the often-neglected voices of the people there. Through her work as a teacher, she has inspired a new generation of California writers.”

Straight’s honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship and Lannan Literary Prize. Her novel “Highwire Moon” was a National Book Award finalist in 2001 and “A Million Nightingales” was shortlisted for the 2006 Los Angeles Times Book Prize in Fiction.

The recipient of the 2013 Innovator’s Award, which spotlights cutting-edge business models, technology or applications of narrative art, is award-winning Young Adult writer and activist John Green.

“Not only is John Green a terrific novelist, but he’s also a role model for the power of individual responsibility,” said Ulin. “Through his novels, videos, events and other interactions, he encourages readers of all ages to live and think deeply, to engage with compassion, and to embrace passion and creativity.”

Green has been at the forefront of experimentation with technology and social media and has expanded how people use these mediums to inspire, teach and share with others. Along with his brother and blog partner, Hank, Green has developed a socially conscious online community of reader-activists like no other in the literary world. His charitable achievements through the Project for Awesome and Nerdfighters have helped people around the world.

The Book Prizes recognize 50 remarkable works in 10 different categories: biography, current interest, fiction, first fiction (the Art Seidenbaum Award), graphic novel/comics, history, mystery/thriller, poetry, science and technology, and young adult literature. Finalists and winners are selected by judging panels composed of writers who specialize in each genre. The complete list of this year’s finalists and further information, including past winners, is available at latimes.com/bookprizes. Tickets will be available online at 10 a.m. Monday, March 17th.

About the Los Angeles Times

The Los Angeles Times is the largest metropolitan daily newspaper in the country, with a daily readership of 1.5 million and 2.6 million on Sunday, more than 22 million unique latimes.com visitors monthly and a combined print and online local weekly audience of 4 million. The Pulitzer Prize-winning Times has been covering Southern California for more than 132 years.

The Los Angeles Times Media Group (LATMG) businesses and affiliates also include The Envelope, Times Community News, and Hoy Los Angeles which, combined with the flagship Los Angeles Times, reach approximately 5.2 million or 38% of all adults in the Southern California marketplace. LATMG also owns California Community News, LLC, operates Tribune Direct LA, and is part of Tribune Company, one of the country’s leading media companies with businesses in publishing, the Internet and broadcasting. Additional information is available at http://latimes.com/aboutus.

Contacts

Los Angeles Times
Hillary Manning, 213-237-2664
hillary.manning@latimes.com
@LATimesFreshInk

Release Summary

Finalists announced for Los Angeles Times Book Prizes. Susan Straight, John Green to receive individual honors. Ceremony to be held April 11 at USC's Bovard Auditorium. Tickets available March 17.

Sharing

Contacts

Los Angeles Times
Hillary Manning, 213-237-2664
hillary.manning@latimes.com
@LATimesFreshInk