2018 PEN America Literary Awards Finalists

PEN America is thrilled to announce the 2018 PEN America Literary Awards finalists. Their awards are juried by panels of esteemed, award-winning writers, editors, booksellers, and critics.

PEN/Jean Stein Book Award

To the author of a book-length work of any genre for its originality, merit, and impact, and that has broken new ground by reshaping the boundaries of its form and signaling strong potential for lasting influence.

Whereas cover image
White Tears cover image
The Changeling cover image
We Were Eight Years in Power  cover image
Bunk  cover image

PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction

To an author whose debut work—a first novel or collection of short stories published in 2017—represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise.

Sour Heart cover image
Black Jesus and Other Superheroes cover image
History of Wolves cover image
Her Body and Other Parties  cover image
Sonora  cover image

PEN Open Book Award

To an exceptional book-length work of any genre by an author of color, published in the United States in 2017.

A Moonless, Starless Sky cover image
Augustown  cover image
My Soul Looks Back cover image
Lessons on Expulsion cover image
Ordinary Beast cover image

PEN Translation Prize

For a book-length translation of prose from any language into English published in 2017.

Katalin Street cover image
A Horse Walks Into a Bar cover image
Out in the Open cover image
The Impossible Fairy Tale cover image
The Book of Emma Reyes cover image

PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay

For a book of essays published in 2017 that exemplifies the dignity and esteem that the essay form imparts to literature.

No Time to Spare cover image
Flaneuse cover image
Alpine Apprentice cover image
You Play the Girl cover image
Because It Is So Beautifu cover image

PEN/Bograd Weld Prize for Biography

For a distinguished biography published in 2017.

Richard Nixon cover image
Grant cover image
Chester B. Himes cover image
You Say to Brick cover image
Lenin  cover image

PEN/E.O. Wilson Prize for Literary Science Writing

For a book that exemplifies literary excellence on the subject of the physical or biological sciences and communicates complex scientific concepts to a lay audience.

The Butchering Art cover image
American Eclipse cover image
Growing a Revolution cover image
No One Cares about Crazy People cover image
Behave  cover image

PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing

To honor a nonfiction book on the subject of sports published in 2017.

Ali  cover image
The Arena cover image
Sting Like a Bee cover image
City of Dreams cover image
Bones cover image