ANNOUNCING
THE BELIEVER BOOK AWARDS

This award has been created in order to honor what we consider the bravest, most ambitious book of the year. Below is a list of the finalists, along with representative sentences from the novels. Winners will be announced in the March issue.

THE HAMILTON CASE
by Michelle de Kretser
(Little, Brown)
“The itch of wool against my skin, the moist green ferns that sprang from rocky crevices as the track wound skyward, Claudia vomiting on the hairpin bends while I leaned out and waved to the third-class passengers in their bulging compartments at the front of the train: each discrete element contributed its part to my happiness.”

DOT IN THE UNIVERSE
by Lucy Ellmann
(Bloomsbury USA)
“Acquired fair and square from far-flung fêtes, or surreptitiously snatched from needless disuse in the kitchens of Jaywick Sands, Dot’s collection would no doubt have been FAMOUS if anyone CARED about tea cosies which they DON’T.”

HOME LAND
by Sam Lipsyte
(Picador)
“Alas, my meager accomplishments appear pale, if not downright pasty, in comparison. I shudder at the notion of Doctor Stacy Ryson and State Senator Glen Menninger remarking on this update at some fund-raising soiree—oh, the snickers, the chortles, the wine-flushed glances and later, perhaps, the puppyish sucking of body parts at a nearby motor lodge. Shudder, in fact, is not the word for the feeling. Feeling is not quite the word for the feeling. How’s bathing at knifepoint in the phlegm of the dead? Is that a feeling?”

THE PINK INSTITUTION
by Selah Saterstrom
(Coffee House Press)
“We knew it began with a mother dropping a spoon or a knife it began pink translucent vein slippered wrapped in baby skin inside a mother a mother lies in bed, a single lamp burns.”

THE DIVINE HUSBAND
by Francisco Goldman
(Atlantic Monthly Press)
“Rumors that José Martí left behind at least one illegitimate child during his year in Central America have always centered on the subject of Poem IX of Versos Sencillos, one of forty-six untitled, often overtly autobiographical poems that the future hero of the Cuban Revolution against Spain published as a single slim volume in New York in 1891, during his decade and a half of exile there.”

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