If you are looking for a great book to put on next semester’s reading list, to propose to your book club, or just to spend the day with, PEN announced the finalists for $150,000 in prizes yesterday. How difficult is it to choose five books out of nearly 200? Very. I know.
The shortlist for the John Kenneth Galbraith award, a $10,000 prize for which I served as a judge, includes Sheri Fink’s “Five Days at Memorial”; Danielle Allen’s “Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality”; “League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth,” by Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru; “The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster,” by Jonathan M. Katz; and “This Changes Everything,” Naomi Klein’s book about climate change.
The Galbraith prize is one of ten to be awarded next month, including awards for fiction, essay writing, science writing, biography, translation, and work by writers of color. Browse all the finalists on the PEN website.