Monday, September 21, 2009

Rock the Vote

The votes have been tabulated, the finalists chosen, it's time for the runoff election! It's time to make your voice heard and the choices will not be easy. I'm speaking, of course, of the race for the best book to win the National Book Award for Fiction in the past 60 years. Should the honors go to an anthology? Was the chief among equals the stories John Cheever, Flannery O'connor, Eudora Welty or William Faulkner? Or should it go to a novel? The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison or Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon? The National Book Award Foundation wants to know what you think. Which of these giants towers just that much above the rest? I'm not going to endorse a candidate, though I've already voted. Dust off your bookshelves, dear readers and polish your erudition. Remember that every vote counts -- your vote counts -- and those who don't vote don't get to bitch about the results. (Well, they do, but we're going to ignore them when they do.) At the moment, Flannery O'connor is way out in front and Ralph Ellison is following hard on her heels. Incidentally, people periodically ask me for book recommendations -- check the National Book Awards website for a list of some of the greatest works to be committed to the page in the last six decades. Good reading!

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Pages to Type is a blog about books, writing and literary culture (with the occasional digression into coffee and the care and feeding of giant robots).