Center for Fiction Names 2019 First Novel Prize Shortlist

September 26, 2019 | 7 books mentioned

The Center for Fiction named its 2019 First Novel Prize shortlist over at LitHub this morning. The award is given to the “best debut novel published between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31 of the award year,” and the prize-winning author receives $10,000.

This year’s judges—Maaza Mengiste, Claire Messud, Emma StraubMonique Truong, and Tommy Orange (last year’s winner)—whittled the 27-title longlist down to just seven titles.

Here’s the 2019 shortlist, with bonus links when applicable:

covercovercovercovercovercovercover
American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson (Read Wilkinson’s 2018 Year in Reading)

Bangkok Wakes to Rain by Pitchaya Sudbanthad (Read Sudbanthad’s 2018 Year in Reading)

Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips (Recently longlisted for the National Book Award in Fiction)

Fall Back Down When I Die by Joe Wilkins

In West Mills by De’Shawn Charles Winslow (Featured in our June Preview)

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong (Featured in two Year in Reading posts)

The Unpassing by Chia-Chia Lin (Featured in Julia Phillips’s list of eight books set in the middle of nowhere)

The winner will be announced at The Center for Fiction’s annual Benefit and Awards Dinner on December 10.

is an associate editor for The Millions. She works in academic publishing by day and is a freelance writer and book reviewer by night. She tweets at @CarolynQuimby.

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