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NYPL’s Young Lions Fiction Award Winners

The Instructions
The Instructions By Levin, Adam (Book - 2010 ) All copies in use. Availability details

Annotation:Beginning with a chance encounter with the beautiful Eliza June Watermark and ending, four days and 900 pages later, with the Events of November 17, this is the story of Gurion Maccabee, age ten: a lover, a fighter, a scholar, and a truly spectacular talker. Expelled from three Jewish day-schools for acts of violence and messianic tendencies, Gurion ends up in the Cage, a special lockdown program for the most hopeless cases of Aptakisic Junior High. Separated from his scholarly followers, Gurion becomes a leader of a very different sort, with righteous aims building to a revolution of troubling intensity ...

Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned
Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned By Tower, Wells, 1973- (Book - 2009 ) FIC T and more… Available to borrow in some locations Holds: 1

Annotation:Viking marauders descend on a much-plundered island, hoping some mayhem will shake off the winter blahs. A man is booted out of his home after his wife discovers that the print of a bare foot on the inside of his windshield doesn’t match her own. Teenage cousins, drugged by summer, meet with a reckoning in the woods. A boy runs off to the carnival after his stepfather bites him in a brawl. In the stories of Wells Tower, families fall apart and messily try to reassemble themselves. His version of America is touched with the seamy splendor of the dropout, the misfit: failed inventors, boozy dreamers, hapless fathers, wayward sons …

The End
The End By Scibona, Salvatore (Book - 2009 ) FIC S and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:A small, incongruous man receives an excruciating piece of news. His son has died in a POW camp in Korea. It is August 15, 1953, the day of a tumultuous street carnival in Elephant Park, an Italian immigrant enclave in Ohio. The man is Rocco LaGrassa, and his many years of dogged labor, paternal devotion, and steadfast Christian faith are about to come to a crashing end. He is the first of many exquisitely drawn characters we meet that day, each of whom will come to their own conclusion. The End follows an elderly abortionist, an enigmatic drapery seamstress, a teenage boy, a jeweler—dramatically into the heart of a crime that will twist all their lives. Against a background of immigration, broken loyalties, and racial hostility, we at last return to August 15, 1953, and see everything Rocco saw—and vastly more—through the eyes of various characters in the crowds …

God Is Dead
God Is Dead By Currie, Ron, 1975- (Paperback - 2008 ) FIC C and more… Available to borrow in some locations Holds: 1

Annotation:When God descends to Earth as a Dinka woman from Sudan and subsequently dies in the Darfur desert, the result is a world both bizarrely new yet eerily familiar. [In Ron Currie’s] … novel we meet God himself; the Dinka woman whose mortality He must suffer when He inhabits her body; people all over the world coping with the devastating news of God’s demise; a group of young men who, fearing the end of the world, take fate into their own hands; mental patients who insist that a god still exists; armies taking up the eternal war between fate and free will; and parents who, in the absence of a deity and the “lack of anything to do on Sundays,” worship their children. On the surface, this is a world utterly transformed—yet certain things remain unchanged: protective parents clash with willful, idealistic teenagers; idols are exalted; small-town rumor mills run unabated; and children often don’t realize how to forgive their parents until it’s too late …

The Dream Life of Sukhanov
The Dream Life of Sukhanov By Grushin, Olga, 1971- (Book - 2005 ) FIC G and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:At fifty-six, Anatoly Sukhanov has everything a man could want. Nearly twenty-five years ago, he traded his precarious existence as a brilliant underground artist for the perks and comforts of a high-ranking Soviet apparatchik. Once he created art; now he censors it. His past is a shadow, repressed to the point of nonexistence. But a series of increasingly bizarre events transforms his perfect world into a nightmare. Buried dreams return to haunt him, his life begins to unravel, new political alignments in the Kremlin threaten to undo him, and little by little, he finds himself losing everything he sold his soul to gain …

Beasts of No Nation
Beasts of No Nation A Novel By Iweala, Uzodinma (Book - 2005 ) In-library use only in some locations

Annotation:… Agu, a young boy in an unnamed West African nation, is recruited into a unit of guerrilla fighters as civil war engulfs his country. Haunted by his father's own death at the hands of militants, which he fled just before witnessing, Agu is vulnerable to the dangerous yet paternal nature of his new commander. While the war rages on, Agu becomes increasingly divorced from the life he had known before the conflict started – a life of school friends, church services, and time with his family still intact. As he vividly recalls these sunnier times, his daily reality spins further downward into inexplicable brutality, primal fear, and loss of selfhood. His relationship with his commander deepens even as it darkens, and his camaraderie with a fellow soldier lends a deceptive sense of normalcy to his experience …

The Confessions of Max Tivoli
The Confessions of Max Tivoli By Greer, Andrew Sean (Book - 2004 ) In-library use only in some locations

Annotation:"We are each the love of someone's life." So begins The Confessions of Max Tivoli, a heartbreaking love story ... Born with the physical appearance of an elderly man, Max grows older mentally like any child, but his body appears to age backwards, growing younger every year. And yet, his physical curse proves to be a blessing, allowing him to try to win the heart of the same woman three times as at each successive encounter she fails to recognize him, taking him for a stranger, so giving Max another chance at love …

The Book of Salt
The Book of Salt By Truong, Monique T. D. (Book - 2004 ) FIC T and more… In-library use only at this time in some locations Holds: 4

Annotation:"[He] came to us through an advertisement that I had in desperation put in the newspaper. It began captivatingly for those days: 'Two American ladies wish ...' " It was these lines in The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book that inspired The Book of Salt … In Paris, in 1934, Bính has accompanied his employers, Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, to the train station for their departure to America … For five years, he has been the live-in cook at the famous apartment at 27 rue de Fleurus … Bính knows far more than the contents of the Steins' pantry: he knows their routines and intimacies, their manipulations and follies. With wry insight, he views Stein and Toklas ensconced in blissful domesticity. But is Bính's account reliable? A lost soul, he is a late-night habitué of the Paris demimonde, an exile and an alien, a man of musings and memories, and, possibly, lies …

The Shell Collector
The Shell Collector Stories By Doerr, Anthony, 1973- (Book - 2003 ) FIC D No Longer Available

Annotation:[The stories in Anthony Doerr's] … debut collection take readers from the African coast to the pine forests of Montana to the damp moors of Lapland, charting a vast physical and emotional landscape. Doerr explores the human condition in all its varieties – metamorphosis, grief, fractured relationships, and slowly mending hearts – and conjures nature in both its beautiful abundance and crushing power. Some of his characters contend with tremendous hardship; some discover unique gifts; all are united by their ultimate deference to the mysteries of the universe outside themselves.

Everything Is Illuminated
Everything Is Illuminated A Novel By Foer, Jonathan Safran, 1977- (Book - 2008 ) FIC F All copies in use. Availability details

Annotation:With only a yellowing photograph in hand, a young man – also named Jonathan Safran Foer – sets out to find the woman who may or may not have saved his grandfather from the Nazis. Accompanied by an old man haunted by memories of the war; an amorous dog named Sammy Davis, Junior, Junior; and the unforgettable Alex, a young Ukrainian translator who speaks in a sublimely butchered English, Jonathan is led on a quixotic journey over a devastated landscape and into an unexpected past.

John Henry Days
John Henry Days A Novel By Whitehead, Colson, 1969- (Book - 2002 ) and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:[Colson Whitehead’s] novel is on one level a multifaceted retelling of the story of John Henry, the black steel-driver who died outracing a machine designed to replace him. On another level it’s the story of a disaffected, middle-aged black journalist on a mission to set a record for junketeering who attends the annual John Henry Days festival. It is also a high-velocity thrill ride through the tunnel where American legend gives way to American pop culture, replete with p. r. flacks, stamp collectors, blues men, and turn-of-the-century song pluggers …

Mark Z. Danielewski's House of Leaves
Mark Z. Danielewski's House of Leaves By Danielewski, Mark Z. (Book - 2000 ) FIC D and more… In-library use only at this time in some locations Holds: 19

Annotation:Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth – musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies – the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children… The story remains unchanged, focusing on a young family that moves into a small home on Ash Tree Lane where they discover something is terribly wrong: their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside…

Description

The New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award is a $10,000 prize awarded each spring to a writer age 35 or younger for a novel or a collection of short stories. Established in 2001, this annual award recognizes the work of young authors and celebrates their accomplishments publicly, making a difference in their lives as they continue to build their careers. The Young Lions Fiction Award was founded by Ethan Hawke, Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, Rick Moody, and Hannah McFarland. The Award is made possible by an endowment created with generous gifts from Russell Abrams, Nina Collins, Ethan Hawke, Stephan Loewentheil, Hannah and Gavin McFarland, Rick Moody, Andrea Olshan, and Jennifer Rudolph Walsh.


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