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Marlon James A Brief History of Seven Killings Cops American Book Award

Marlon James wins 2015 American Book Award

Marlon James’ epic third novel A Brief History of Seven Killings has landed him among the list of winners on the 2015 American Book Awards.  An award from writers celebrating other writers and without the borders of categories to define the works, the American Book Award is particularly noteworthy for its celebration of diversity. 

A release put forward by the award organizers, the Before Columbus Foundation, described the award as a celebration of excellence and recognition of American literature as a multicultural landscape.

“The American Book Awards were created to provide recognition for outstanding literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community. The purpose of the awards is to recognize literary excellence without limitations or restrictions. There are no categories, no nominees, and therefore no losers,” the release said. 

James is a part of list of 15 established and emerging writers producing work in a range of genres. Included in this list is poet Anne Waldman who is this year’s recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award. Waldman has authored more than 40 collections has been the recipient of The Dylan Thomas Memorial Award and the Poets Foundation Award.

Previous winners of the American Book Award have included Jamaica Kincaid (See Then Now, 2014), Toure (Who’s Afraid of Post-Blackness? What it Means to Be Black Now, 2012), and Victor Lavalle (The Big Machine, 2010). 

The 2015 award ceremony will take place on Sunday, October 25, 2015 at the SF Jazz Centre in San Francisco. 

A Brief History of Seven Killings has won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Fiction (2015) and was shortlisted for the Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature (2015) and the National Book Critics Circle Award (2014).

2015 Winners of the American Book Award

Hisham Aidi, Rebel Music: Race, Empire, and the New Muslim Youth Culture (Vintage)

Arlene Biala, her beckoning hands (Word Poetry)

Arthur Dong, Forbidden City, USA: Chinese American Nightclubs, 1936-1970 (DeepFocus Productions)

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, An Indigenous People’s History of the United States (Beacon Press)

Peter J. Harris, The Black Man of Happiness (Black Man of Happiness Project)

Marlon James, A Brief History of Seven Killings (Riverhead Books)

Martin Kilson, Transformation of the African American Intelligentsia, 1880–2012 (Harvard University Press)

Naomi Klein, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate (Simon & Schuster)

Laila Lalami, The Moor’s Account (Pantheon)

Manuel Luis Martinez, Los Duros (Floricanto Press)

Craig Santos Perez, from unincorporated territory (Omnidawn)

Carlos Santana, with Ashley Kahn and Hal Miller, The Universal Tone: Bringing My Story to Light (Little, Brown and Company)

Ira Sukrungruang, Southside Buddhist (University of Tampa Press)

Astra Taylor, The People’s Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age (Henry Holt)

Lifetime Achievement Awardee:

Anne Waldman