Bellwether Prize

The Bellwether Prize, which was established in 2000 by Barbara Kingsolver and is funded entirely by her, was created to promote fiction that addresses issues of social justice and the impact of culture and politics on human relationships.

Beginning in 2012, the $25,000 prize will be awarded biennially to the author of a previously unpublished novel of high literary caliber that exemplifies the prize’s… (more)

 

2016 selection

The Leavers: A Novel

Bellwether Prize 2016

by Lisa Ko

FINALIST FOR THE 2017 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR FICTION

Named a Best Book of 2017 by NPR, Entertainment Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, BuzzFeed, Bustle, and Electric Literature

“There was a time I would have...


2008 selection

The Girl Who Fell from the Sky

Bellwether Prize 2008

by HeidiW. Durrow

Rachel, the daughter of a Danish mother and a black G.I., becomes the sole survivor of a family tragedy after a fateful morning on their Chicago rooftop.

Forced to move to a new city, with her strict African...


2006 selection

Mudbound

Bellwether Prize 2006

by Hillary Jordan

Now a Netflix original movie, releasing nationally November 17, 2017.

In Jordan's prize-winning debut, prejudice takes many forms, both subtle and brutal. It is 1946, and city-bred Laura McAllan is trying to...


2004 selection

Correcting the Landscape

Bellwether Prize 2004

by Marjorie Kowalski Cole

The editor of a small weekly newspaper in Fairbanks, Alaska, Gus Traynor is an independent spirit whose idealism has survived numerous tests. When big business interests threaten the breathtaking wilderness...


2002 selection

The Book of Dead Birds

Bellwether Prize 2002

by Gayle Brandeis

Ava Sing Lo has been accidentally killing her mother's birds since she was a little girl. Now in her twenties, Ava leaves her native San Diego for the Salton Sea, where she volunteers to help environmental activists...


2000 selection

Kissing the Virgin's Mouth

Bellwether Prize 2000

by Donna M. Gershten

Guadalupe Magdalena Molina Vásquez -- wife, scoundrel, courtesan, mother -- is full of contradictions: she believes in love but is suspicious of men; she rejects religion but admires the Virgin Mary; she respects...