Monday, October 19, 2009


The National Book Award Finalists were announced last week and when I met with my students on Thursday, I read them the first paragraphs of each book and had them vote on their favorite. We're going to see if, based on just the first few sentences, we can predict the winner.

The winner was Marcel Theroux's Far North. The first few lines for that book are:

Every day I buckle on my guns and go out to patrol this dingy city.
I've been doing it so long that I'm shaped to it, like a hand that's been carrying buckets in the cold.
The winters are the worst, struggling up out of a haunted sleep, fumbling for my boots in the dark. Summer is better. The place feels almost drunk on the endless light and time skids by for a week or two. We don't get much spring or fall to speak of. Up here, for ten months a year, the weather has teeth in it.

Two books tied for second with my students, American Salvage by Bonnie Jo Campbell and Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann.

No comments: