April 4, 2011

Indie Booksellers' Choice Award gets new co-sponsor, announces longlist


Melville House has announced the longlist of finalists for the first Independent Booksellers Choice Awards.

The list of 30 semi-finalists was supposed to have been announced Friday.

“We had a last minute rush of votes and it got pretty exciting,” explained Melville House publisher Dennis Johnson. “It was so close that we wound up extending the list to 36 titles from 29 different independent presses.” Johnson said votes came in from many of the country’s most prestigious bookstores, including St. Marks Book Shop and Word in New York, 57th Street Books in Chicago, City Lights and Green Apple Books in San Francisco, Elliott Bay Book Company in Seattle, and Book Soup and Skylight Books in Los Angeles.

Among the finalists were titles from indie standard-bearers such as Akashic, Dalkey Archives, New Directions, Graywolf and Seven Stories, new houses such as O/R Books, micro-presses Two Dollar Radio, Flatmancrooked and The Dorothy Project, and giant indies such as Grove Atlantic and Norton.

The complete list of titles appears after the jump.

Melville House also announced a new partnership with the popular trade e-newsletter Shelf Awareness, which will now co-sponsor the award.

“No one in the American media covers the independent bookselling scene more smartly than Shelf Awareness,” said Johnson. “They really get what indie bookselling means to the culture at large, and we’re really thrilled to join forces with them in the effort to champion books published by independent publishers and sold by independent booksellers. That’s what it’s all about.”

“The Indie Bookseller Choice Awards symbolize everything we value and believe in at Shelf Awareness,” said SA publisher and co-founder Jenn Risko. “We’re so pleased and grateful to help shine the spotlight on the amazing work that both indie booksellers and indie publishers do.”

The short list of winners will be announced on May 1st. Ultimately, the five winners will be announced during the annual Book Expo American convention, at a ceremony at the Housing Works Bookstore in New York City on May 23. The five winning titles, chosen from any genre of publication, will be on display at participating independent bookstores across the country.


Agaat by Marlene Van Niekerk  (Tin House)
Aliss at the Fire by Jon Fosse  (Dalkey Archive)
An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris by Geroges Perec  (Wakefield Press)
Asunder by Robert Lopez  (Dzanc)
Black Minutes by Martin Solares  (Grove/Atlantic)
Contingency Plan by David K Wheeler  (TS Poetry)
Dolly City by Orly Castel-Bloom (Dalkey)
by Eugene Marten (Tyrant Books)
Flyover State by Emma Straub  (Flatmancrooked)
Forecast by Shya Scanlon  (Flatmancrooked)
Grand Central Winter: Stories from the Street by Lee Stringer (Seven Stories Press)
Great House by Nicole Krauss (W.W. Norton)
I Just Lately Started Buying Wings by Kim Dana Kupperman (Graywolf Press)
Long, Last, Happy by Barry Hannah (Grove/Atlantic)
Lord of Misrule by Jaimy Gordon (McPherson)
Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes  (Grove/Atlantic)
Museum of the Weird by Amelia Gray (FC2)
New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander (New Press)
Nox by Anne Carson (New Directions)
Orion You Came and Took All My Marbles by Kira Henehan (Milkweed Editions)
Report by Jessica Francis Kane (Graywolf)
The Autobiography of Jenny X by Lisa Dierbeck (O/R Books)
The Black History of the White House by Clarence Lusane  (City Lights)
The Debba by Avner Mandelman  (Other Press)
The French Revolution by Matt Stewart (Soft Skull Press)
The Instructions by Adam Levin (McSweeney’s)
The Jokers by Albert Cossery (NYRB)
The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall (W.W. Norton)
The Museum of Eterna’s Novel by Macedonio Fernandez (Open Letter)
The Orange Eats Creeps by Grace Krilanovich  (Two Dollar Radio)
The Singer’s Gun by Emily St. John Mandel (Unbridled)
The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi (Night Shade Books)
Under the Poppy by Kathe Koja (Small Beer Press)
Visitation by Jenny Erpenbeck (New Directions)
Who Was Changed and Who Was Dead by Barbara Comyns (Dorothy)
by Nina Revoyr (Akashic)