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First Time Novelist Awards Short List Announced

sympathizerThe 2015 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize short list is here.

After the Parade by Ostlund

“An ESL teacher seeks closure from a rejection-marked childhood and his own questionable choices by exploring his relationships with fellow misfits in his youth. A first novel by the award-winning author of The Bigness of the World.”

Against the Country by Metcalf

“After his parents’ decide to move away from the corrupting influences of town, and to settle instead in rural Virginia, the narrator leads the reader through a gallery of scabrous youths and callous adults driven mad by the stubborn soil of the New World.”

Bright Lines by Islam

“A Bangladesh orphan haunted by her parents’ murders moves in with family members in Brooklyn until a fateful coming-of-age summer when her cousin, an Islamic runaway and she confront painful family secrets.”

The Fishermen by Obioma

“In a Nigerian town in the mid-1990s, four brothers encounter a madman whose mystic prophecy of violence threatens the core of their close-knit family.”

The Sympathizer by Nguyen

“Follows a Viet Cong agent as he spies on a South Vietnamese army general and his compatriots as they start a new life in 1975 Los Angeles.”

The Turner House by Flournoy

“The Turner House marks a major new contribution to the story of the American family. The Turners have lived on Yarrow Street for over fifty years. Their house has seen thirteen children grown and gone–and some returned; it has seen the arrival of grandchildren, the fall of Detroit’s East Side, and the loss of a father. The house still stands despite abandoned lots, an embattled city, and the inevitable shift outward to the suburbs. But now, as ailing matriarch Viola finds herself forced to leave her home and move in with her eldest son, the family discovers that the house is worth just a tenth of its mortgage. The Turner children are called home to decide its fate. ”

The Unfortunates by McManus

“The story of a prominent New York family on the cusp of ruin in the face of a matriarch’s wavering health; a bumbling son’s scandalous opera; and a life of wealth and inheritance belonging to a bygone era”