The National Book Awards finalists, including a category for Young People’s Literature, were announced last Wednesday. There was some confusion over which titles were supposed to be included, so the YPL category has six finalists instead of the traditional five. Then, yesterday, the “accidental” finalist, Lauren Myracle, withdrew her novel Shine from consideration at the request of the National Book Foundation. It’s kind of a mess of situation, to put it mildly. I wrote a couple of posts about it for the Hub. The first includes the names of all six of the original finalists (be sure to check it out so you can add them to your reading list!). The second gives my take on the whole miscommunication/mistake/withdrawal business. There’s also a poll where you can vote on your reaction to the mistake and the way the NBF handled it.
Mostly (and I think this comes across in my post) I feel sad for the authors. The five chosen finalists are having what should be a very exciting time ruined by bad PR, and poor Lauren, who’s always seemed so wonderful when I’ve seen her in person, must have had one hell of a week. I think the NBF screwed up three – first, obviously, in making the erroneous announcement; second, in waffling on how to deal with it; and third, asking Myracle to clean up their mess by withdrawing herself. Boo.