Laila Lalami

Laila Lalami’s “The Other Americans” on US’ Aspen Words Literary Prize 2020 longlist.

Laila Lalami novel The Other Americans is on the Aspen Words Literary Prize 2020 longlist announced on November 14, 2019. Also on the longlist are Colson Whitehead and Nicole Dennis-Benn.

The Aspen Institute is a nonpartisan forum for values-based leadership and the exchange of ideas headquartered in Washington DC, United States. Since 2018, the institute has hosted The Aspen Words Literary Prize, one of the largest in the United States worth $35,000. The inaugural award was presented to Mohsin Hamid in 2018 for Exit West, his novel about migration and refugees. Tayari Jones won the 2019 prize for An American Marriage, her novel about racism and unjust incarceration.

The award announced the longlist of those who are in the running for the 2020 edition and they are;

  • Opioid, Indiana by Brian Allen Carr
  • Your House Will Pay by Steph Cha
  • Dominicana by Angie Cruz
  • Patsy by Nicole Dennis-Benn
  • Sabrina & Corina by Kali Fajardo-Anstine
  • The Other Americans by Laila Lalami
  • The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri
  • Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli
  • The Beadworkers by Beth Piatote
  • The Affairs of the Falcóns by Melissa Rivero
  • We Cast a Shadow by Maurice Carlos Ruffin
  • The World Doesn’t Require You by Rion Amilcar Scott
  • On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
  • Lot by Bryan Washington
  • The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
  • Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson

The five finalists and winner will be selected by a five-member jury that includes acclaimed writer and professor Alexander Chee, founding director of the Aspen Institute Dialogue on Public Libraries Amy Garmer, literary activist and poet Saeed Jones, Helen Obermeyer, whose career spans work in the financial services industry to television show production, and best-selling memoirist Esmeralda Santiago.

The finalists will be named on February 19, 2020, and the winner will be announced live at an Awards Ceremony in New York City, USA on April 16, 2020.


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