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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence Long List with Becky’s Comments

The list came out today. I have attached it below but here is the official link.

I have a few things to say about this award in general, but first, please don’t forget my post about how to use award lists as a RA Tool.

That leads me to the first thing about why this list is important-- since it is picked by library people, they make even the announcement press release more useful to us than the average award list. For example the titles listed below are all linked to the Booklist review, so you can immediately see a library focused review of the book written for its best reader. That is important to mention too.  Just because a book is on an awards list doesn’t mean it is the right pick for every patron who walks through your door. But a quick click on the titles here on the list will lead you to a review that can help you and the patron decide which, if any, of these books are right for them.

Another way this list is more helpful than the non-library people ones is that right in the announcement are the links to the past years’ long lists. Backlist options right in front of you. No searching necessary. Use those lists at the bottom of this page... RIGHT NOW. Only library people are smart enough to include that in the press release.

This award is also important because it is basically the adult version of the Newbery Award. Over the years that has become THE MOST IMPORTANT award for childrens’ literature precisely because librarians pick it. People see librarians as book experts in this youth category now, hands down, and slowly but surely, we can have people see us this way for adult literature with the Carnegie Medal. Last year was a huge step forward because the Carnegie Medal picked The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen months before it also won the Pulitzer Prize. We adult library people know what we are talking about when it comes to book too, and the rest of the world is starting to notice.

In fact, let me take a moment here to make a general comment about awards lists for adult books-  all of them would be improved if librarians were required to be a part of the jury process.  Yes it is great for authors and critics to be involved, but only authors and critics is not enough.  We library workers understand the books, and more importantly, the readers, better. We need to be more involved. This award is a start, but only a start. We need to keep fighting to have our expertise taken more seriously.

Finally, the Carnegie Medals Longlist has always been diverse even before there was a cry to make sure diverse voices are considered. This year is no exception.

Enjoy. Once the list gets whittled down further, Booklist will prepare readalikes too. [Oh, I had forgotten that as a reason why a librarian chosen list is better.]

Click here for all the posts I have written on this award over the years.

Awards Longlist

Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence: Longlist 2017

Six finalists, three fiction and three nonfiction will be announced on October 26, 2016.  The winners are announced at the RUSA Book and Media Awards Ceremony, Sunday, January 22, 2017, 5-7:00 p.m. EST, at the American Library Association's Midwinter Meeting in Atlanta.


Alameddine, Rabih. The Angel of History(Atlantic Monthly)
Beverly, Bill. Dodgers. (Crown)
Butler, Robert Olen. Perfume River. (Atlantic Monthly)
Chabon, Michael. Moonglow. (Harper)
Eggers, Dave. Heroes of the Frontier. (Knopf)
Enrigue, Álvaro. Sudden Death. (Riverhead)
Erdrich, Louise. LaRose. (Harper)
Gyasi, Yaa. Homegoing. (Knopf)
Haslett, Adam. Imagine Me Gone. (Little, Brown)
Ivey, Eowyn. To the Bright Edge of the World. (Little, Brown)
Lee, Krys. How I Became a North Korean. (Viking)
Mbue, Imbolo. Behold the Dreamers. (Random House)
Morgan, C. E. The Sport of Kings. (Farrar)
Murphy, Tim. Christodora. (Grove)
Patchett, Ann. Commonwealth. (Harper)
Prose, Francine. Mister Monkey. (Harper)
Smith, Dominic. The Last Painting of Sara de Vos. (Farrar)
Smith, Zadie. Swing Time. (Penguin)
Strout, Elizabeth. My Name Is Lucy Barton. (Random House)
Terrell, Whitney. The Good Lieutenant. (Farrar)
Thien, Madeleine. Do Not Say We Have Nothing. (Norton)
Watson, Larry. As Good as Gone(Algonquin)
Whitehead, Colson. The Underground Railroad. (Doubleday)
Woodson, Jacqueline. Another Brooklyn. (Harper)


Dum, Christopher P. Exiled in America: Life on the Margins in a Residential Motel. (Columbia University Press)
Jahren, Hope. Lab Girl. (Knopf)
Kanigel, Robert. Eyes on the Street: The Life of Jane Jacobs. (Knopf)
Kurlansky, Mark. Paper: Paging through History. (Norton)
McDonald-Gibson, Charlotte. Cast Away: True Stories of Survival from Europe’s Refugee Crisis. (New Press)
Phillips, Patrick. Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America. (Norton)
Sax, David. The Revenge of Analog: Real Things and Why They Matter.(Perseus/Public Affairs)
Wideman, John Edgar. Writing to Save a Life: The Louis Till File. (Scribner)


The previous up-to 50 titles considered for the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction & Nonfiction:
2016 Longlist
2015 Longlist

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