This one is Orlando giving love as much as getting it – you're welcome, America, for the awesome fiction coming out of this city. (But also thanks for noticing!) When our own David James Poissant
pushed his first book out into the world last year, the New York Times
said: "A number of recent scientific studies have argued that stories teach us to impose meaningful order on the random events of life. But why read studies when you could learn the same thing from this wise debut collection? Poissant’s characters are often a mess — belligerent, impulsive, smart in all the wrong ways — but he manages their lives with precision, intelligence and clarity." The Los Angeles Review of Books chimed in: "In its melancholic way, The Heaven of Animals
might remind readers of two stylistically disparate story collections — Richard Ford’s A Multitude of Sins
and Amy Hemple’s The Dog of the Marriage
— which are surely not bad company to keep."
Today Poissant was named to the longlist
for the 2015 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction: "To an author whose debut work – a first novel or collection of short stories published in 2014 – represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise." And it's not just bragging rights and literary glory, either: There's a $25,000 award for this prize.
Finalists will be announced April 15. The winners for all 2015 awards will be announced May 13 and honored at PEN's Literary Awards Ceremony June 8 in New York.
Looking for something to read? The full list of nominees for the 2015 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction follows:
(W. W. Norton & Company)
Ride Around Shining,
(Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
The Wives of Los Alamos,
The Heaven of Animals,
David James Poissant
(Simon & Schuster)
Love Me Back,
Time of the Locust,