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Announcing the Finalists for the 2019 Big Other Book Award for Nonfiction!


We are excited to announce the finalists for the 2019 Big Other Book Award for Nonfiction. The winner will be announced May 16, 2020 at the inaugural Big Other Book Awards Ceremony.

All the books below are linked to their respective pages at Bookshop, the fledgling indie alternative to evil empire Amazon. Visit the Big Other Shop there, where you can find the list of finalists in its entirety.

Without further ado, here are the finalists for the 2019 Big Other Book Award for Nonfiction:

Will Alexander’s A Cannibal Explains Himself to Himself (The Elephants)

Hazel V. Carby’s Imperial Intimacies: A Tale of Two Islands (Verso)

Emmanuel Carrère’s 97,196 Words (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux), translated by John Lambert

Gabrielle Civil’s Experiments in Joy (The Accomplices)

Jehanne Dubrow’s throughsmoke (New Rivers Press)

Marguerite Duras’ Me & Other Writing (Dorothy), translated by Olivia Baes and Emma Ramadan

Nina Sun Eidsheim’s The Race of Sound (Duke University Press)

Keum Suk Gendry-Kim’s Grass (Drawn and Quarterly), translated by Janet Hong

T. Fleischmann’s Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through (Coffee House Press)

Laura Hyunjhee Kim’s Entering the Blobosphere: A Musing on Blobs (The Accomplices)

Robert Macfarlane’s Underland (W. W. Norton)

Jenny Odell’s How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy (Melville House Publishing)

Jena Osman’s Motion Studies (Ugly Duckling Presse)

Lia Purpura’s All the Fierce Tethers (Sarabande)

Frank Santoro’s Pittsburgh (New York Review of Comics)

Stephanie Sauer’s Almonds Are Members of the Peach Family (Noemi Press)

Peter Selgin’s The Kuhreihen Melody (Serving House Books)

Roberto Tejada’s Still Nowhere in an Empty Vastness (Noemi Press)

Tony Trigilio’s Ghosts of the Upper Floor (BlazeVox)

Esmé Weijun Wang’s The Collected Schizophrenias (Graywolf)


John Madera's fiction may be found in Conjunctions, Opium Magazine, The &Now Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing, and many other journals. His criticism may be found in American Book Review, Bookforum, The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Rain Taxi: Review of Books, The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail, and many other venues. Recipient of an M.F.A. in Literary Arts from Brown University, John Madera lives in New York City, where he runs Rhizomatic and manages and edits Big Other.

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