Saturday, June 18, 2016

Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

I've already read a few of these, thanks to a liberal arts education and the Battle of the Prizes reading challenge from a few years back. It seems kind of silly not to make it a thing

(That's a new phrase to me, but I really love it and find myself using it quite often. It's a bit vague, perhaps, but appropriately blase for the languid days of summer.)

Green means still seeking. Blue means waiting patiently on the TBR shelf for me to give it my full attention. I don't plan to collect these so I'm not tracking hardback vs. paperback as I usually do. There's only so much room on the shelves these days. 

Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Winners

2017:  The Underground Railroad - Colson Whitehead
2016:  The Sympathizer - Viet Thanh Nguyen
2015:  All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr
2014:  The Goldfinch - Donna Tartt
2013:  The Orphan Master's Son - Adam Johnson
2012:  No award given
2011:  A Visit from the Goon Squad - Jennifer Egan
2010:  Tinkers - Paul Harding
2009:  Olive Kitteridge - Elizabeth Strout
2008:  The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao - Junot Diaz
2007:  The Road - Cormac McCarthy
2006:  March - Geraldine Brooks
2005:  Gilead - Marilynne Robinson
2004:  The Known World - Edward P. Jones
2003:  Middlesex - Jeffrey Eugenides
2002:  Empire Falls - Richard Russo
2001:  The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay - Michael Chabon
2000:  Interpreter of Maladies - Jhumpa Lahiri
1999:  The Hours - Michael Cunningham
1998:  American Pastoral - Philip Roth
1997:  Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer - Steven Millhauser
1996:  Independence Day - Richard Ford
1995:  The Stone Diaries - Carol Shields
1994:  The Shipping News - E. Annie Proulx
1993:  A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain - Robert Olen Butler
1992:  A Thousand Acres - Jane Smiley
1991:  Rabbit At Rest - John Updike
1990:  The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love - Oscar Hijuelos
1989:  Breathing Lessons - Anne Tyler
1988:  Beloved - Toni Morrison
1987:  A Summons to Memphis - Peter Taylor
1986:  Lonesome Dove - Larry McMurtry
1985:  Foreign Affairs - Alison Lurie
1984:  Ironweed - William Kennedy
1983:  The Color Purple - Alice Walker
1982:  Rabbit Is Rich - John Updike
1981:  A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
1980:  The Executioner's Song - Norman Mailer
1979:  The Stories of John Cheever - John Cheever
1978:  Elbow Room - James Alan McPherson
1977:  No award given
1976:  Humboldt's Gift - Saul Bellow
1975:  The Killer Angels - Michael Shaara
1974:  No award given
1973:  The Optimist's Daughter - Eudora Welty
1972:  Angle of Repose - Wallace Stegner
1971:  No award given
1970:  Collected Stories - Jean Stafford
1969: House Made of Dawn - N. Scott Momaday
1968:  The Confessions of Nat Turner - William Styron
1967:  The Fixer - Bernard Malamud
1966:  Collected Stories - Katherine Anne Porter
1965:  The Keepers Of The House - Shirley Ann Grau
1964:  No award given
1963:  The Reivers - William Faulkner
1962:  The Edge of Sadness - Edwin O'Connor
1961:  To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee
1960:  Advise and Consent - Allen Drury
1959:  The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters - Robert Lewis Taylor
1958:  A Death In The Family - James Agee
1957:  No award given
1956:  Andersonville - MacKinlay Kantor
1955:  A Fable - William Faulkner
1954:  No award given
1953:  The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemingway
1952:  The Caine Mutiny - Herman Wouk
1951:  The Town - Conrad Richter
1950:  The Way West - A. B. Guthrie
1949:  Guard of Honor - James Gould Cozzens
1948:  Tales of the South Pacific - James A. Michener
1947:  All the King's Men - Robert Penn Warren
1946:  No award given
1945:  A Bell for Adano - John Hersey
1944:  Journey in the Dark - Martin Flavin
1943:  Dragon's Teeth - Upton Sinclair
1942:  In This Our Life - Ellen Glasgow
1941:  No award given
1940:  The Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
1939:  The Yearling - Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
1938:  The Late George Apley - John Phillips Marquand 
1937:  Gone With the Wind - by Margaret Mitchell
1936: Honey in the Horn - Harold L. Davis
1935:  Now in November - Josephine Winslow Johnson 
1934:  Lamb in His Bosom - Caroline Miller
1933:  The Store - T. S. Stribling 
1932:  The Good Earth - Pearl S. Buck
1931:  Years of Grace - Margaret Ayer Barnes 
1930:  Laughing Boy - Oliver Lafarge 
1929:  Scarlet Sister Mary - Julia Peterkin 
1928:  The Bridge of San Luis Rey - Thornton Wilder 
1927:  Early Autumn - Louis Bromfield
1926:  Arrowsmith - Sinclair Lewis 
1925:  So Big - Edna Ferber 
1924:  The Able McLaughlins - Margaret Wilson 
1923:  One of Ours - Willa Cather
1922:  Alice Adams - Booth Tarkington
1921:  The Age of Innocence - Edith Wharton
1919:  The Magnificent Ambersons - Booth Tarkington
1918:  His Family - Ernest Poole


  1. Are the titles in black the ones you've read? I have read ten, and don't have much interest in the ones I haven't read. Neither of those Faulkner books is his greatest work. And I don't think The Old Man and the Sea holds a candle to The Sun Also Rises. And no Gatsby? So Big was thought to be better than G?!

  2. Yes, the ones in black are the ones I've read. I agree sometimes the winners are chosen because the author was "due." I guess that's a problem with all prizes: is the author's best work this one, or in the future, or two books ago? Hemingway is a perfect example -- I totally agree with you on TSAR, and on Gatsby.

    I like to push myself beyond my personal taste, without taking too many chances. Often I'm surprised how much I like a book about, say, the slave trade, which I wouldn't have read if it wasn't on some winners list.

    I'll have more to say when I've read more of these! :-)


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