Los Angeles Times Book Prize

The Book Prize program was founded by the late Art Seidenbaum, a Los Angeles Times book editor from 1978 to 1985; an award named after him was added a year after his death in 1990. Works are eligible during the year of their first US publication in English, though English does not have to be the original language of the work. The author of each winning book and the Kirsch Award recipient receives… (more)

 

for Biography category winners

2013 selection

Bolivar: American Liberator

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 2013

by Marie Arana

It is astonishing that Simón Bolívar, the great Liberator of South America, is not better known in the United States. He freed six countries from Spanish rule, traveled more than 75,000 miles on horseback...


2004 selection

De Kooning's Bicycle

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 2004

by Robert Long

Some of the twentieth century's most important artists and writers--from Jackson Pollock to Saul Steinberg, Frank O'Hara to Jean Stafford--lived and worked on the East End of Long Island years before it assumed...


1996 selection

Angela's Ashes

Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography 1997, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 1996, National Book Critics Circle Award for Biography/Autobiography 1996

by Frank McCourt

A Pulitzer Prize–winning, #1 New York Times bestseller, Angela’s Ashes is Frank McCourt’s masterful memoir of his childhood in Ireland.

“When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I managed to survive...


1993 selection

Daniel Boone

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 1993

by John Mack Faragher

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for History for 1993

In the first and most reliable biography of Daniel Boone in more than fifty years, award-winning historian Faragher brilliantly portrays America's...


1984 selection

The Nightmare of Reason

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 1984

by Ernst Pawel

A comprehensive and interpretative biography of Franz Kafka that is both a monumental work of scholarship and a vivid, lively evocation of Kafka's world.


1981 selection

Mornings on Horseback

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography 1981

by David McCullough

The National Book Award–winning biography that tells the story of how young Teddy Roosevelt transformed himself from a sickly boy into the vigorous man who would become a war hero and ultimately president...


for Current Interest category winners

2014 selection

The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2014

by Jeff Hobbs

An instant New York Times bestseller, named a best book of the year by The New York Times Book Review, Amazon, and Entertainment Weekly, among others, this celebrated account of a young African-American man...


2011 selection

Thinking, Fast and Slow

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2011

by Daniel Kahneman

Major New York Times bestseller

Winner of the National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award in 2012

Selected by the New York Times Book Review as one of the ten best books of 2011

A Globe and Mail Best Books of...


2007 selection

Soldier's Heart

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2007

by Elizabeth D. Samet

Elizabeth D. Samet and her students learned to romanticize the army "from the stories of their fathers and from the movies." For Samet, it was the old World War II movies she used to watch on TV, while her students...


2005 selection

Night Draws Near

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2005

by Anthony Shadid

From the only journalist to win a Pulitzer Prize for his reporting from Iraq, here is a riveting account of ordinary people caught between the struggles

of nations

Like her country, Karima—a widow with eight...


2001 selection

Nickel and Dimed

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2001

by Barbara Ehrenreich

Our sharpest and most original social critic goes "undercover" as an unskilled worker to reveal the dark side of American prosperity.

Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages....


2000 selection

Way Out There In the Blue

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 2000

by Frances FitzGerald

Way Out There in the Blue is a major work of history by the Pulitzer Prize­winning author of Fire in the Lake. Using the Star Wars missile defense program as a magnifying glass on his presidency, Frances FitzGerald...


1999 selection

Sidewalk

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1999

by Mitchell Duneier, Hakim Hasan & Ovie Carter

An exceptional ethnography marked by clarity and candor, Sidewalk takes us into the socio-cultural environment of those who, though often seen as threatening or unseemly, work day after day on "the blocks" of...


1998 selection

We Wish to Inform You that Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families

Guardian First Book Award 1999, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1998, National Book Critics Circle Award for General Non-fiction 1998

by Philip Gourevitch

An unforgettable firsthand account of a people's response to genocide and what it tells us about humanity.

This remarkable debut book chronicles what has happened in Rwanda and neighboring states since 1994,...


1997 selection

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1997, National Book Critics Circle Award for General Non-fiction 1997

by Anne Fadiman

Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction

When three-month-old Lia Lee Arrived at the county hospital emergency room in Merced, California, a chain of events was set in motion from which...


1994 selection

Diplomacy

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1994

by Henry Kissinger

A brilliant, sweeping history of diplomacy that includes personal stories from the noted former Secretary of State, including his stunning reopening of relations with China.

The seminal work on foreign policy...


1989 selection

Parting the Waters

Pulitzer Prize for History 1989, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1989, National Book Critics Circle Award for General Non-fiction 1988

by Taylor Branch

In volume one of his America in the King Years, Pulitzer Prize winner Taylor Branch gives a masterly account of the American civil rights movement.

Hailed as the most masterful story ever told of the American...


for Fiction category winners

2014 selection

The Blazing World: A Novel

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2014

by Siri Hustvedt

Named one of the New York Times Book Review’s 100 Notable Books of the Year ** Publishers Weekly’s Best Fiction Books of 2014 ** NPR Best Books of 2014 ** Kirkus Reviews Best Literary Fiction Books of 2014...


2012 selection

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk

Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize 2012, National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction 2012, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2012

by Ben Fountain

New York Times Bestseller

Now a Major Motion Picture

“Brilliantly done . . . grand, intimate, and joyous.”

—New York Times Book Review

“Mothers, father, sons, and daughters: read this giant-hearted novel.”...


2009 selection

A Happy Marriage

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2009

by Rafael Yglesias

A Happy Marriage is both intimate and expansive: It is the story of Enrique Sabas and his wife, Margaret, a novel that alternates between the romantic misadventures of the first weeks of their courtship and...


2008 selection

Home

Women's Prize for Fiction 2009, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2008

by Marilynne Robinson

Hundreds of thousands were enthralled by the luminous voice of John Ames in Gilead, Marilynne Robinson's Pulitzer Prize–winning novel. Home is an entirely independent, deeply affecting novel that takes place...


2004 selection

The Master

International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2006, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2004

by Colm Toibin

“Colm Tóibín’s beautiful, subtle illumination of Henry James’s inner life” (The New York Times) captures the loneliness and hope of a master of psychological subtlety whose forays into intimacy inevitably...


2000 selection

Assorted Fire Events

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 2000

by David Means & Donald Antrim

Upon its publication, Assorted Fire Events won a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, and received tremendous critical praise. Ranging across America, taking...


1993 selection

Pigs in Heaven

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 1993

by Barbara Kingsolver

Picking up where her modern classic The Bean Trees left off, Barbara Kingsolver’s bestselling Pigs in Heaven continues the tale of Turtle and Taylor Greer, a Native American girl and her adoptive mother who...


1983 selection

Schindler's List

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction 1983, Man Booker Prize 1982

by Thomas Keneally

The acclaimed bestselling classic of Holocaust literature, winner of the Booker Prize and the Los Angeles Times Book Award for Fiction, and the inspiration for the classic film—“a masterful account of the...


for History category winners

2013 selection

The Sleepwalkers

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for History 2013

by Christopher Clark

One of The New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Books of the Year

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize (History)

The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914 is historian Christopher Clark’s riveting...


2012 selection

America's Great Debate

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for History 2012

by Fergus M. Bordewich

The Mexican War introduced vast new territories into the United States, among them California and the present-day Southwest. When gold was discovered in California in the great Gold Rush of 1849, the population...


for Mystery/Thriller category winners

2017 selection

A Book of American Martyrs

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller 2017

by Joyce Carol Oates

“Oates’ American saga captivates because it exists within an actual drama playing out across the country...Martyrs is a graceful and excruciating story of two families who do not live very far apart, but...


2011 selection

11/22/63: A Novel

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller 2011

by Stephen King

One of the Ten Best Books of The New York Times Book Review

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize

Soon to be a miniseries from Hulu starring James Franco

ON NOVEMBER 22, 1963, THREE SHOTS RANG OUT IN DALLAS,...


2010 selection

Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter: A Novel

Gold Dagger Award 2011, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller 2010

by Tom Franklin

“The classic trifecta of talent, heart, and a bone-deep sense of storytelling….A masterful performance, deftly rendered and deeply satisfying. For days on end, I woke with this story on my mind.”

   — David...


2008 selection

Envy the Night

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller 2008

by Michael Koryta

In the seven years since he learned that his U.S. marshal father lead a double life as a contract killer--and committed suicide to avoid prosecution--Frank Temple III has mostly drifted through life. But when...


for Poetry category winners

2014 selection

Citizen

National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry 2014, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry 2014

by Claudia Rankine

* Finalist for the National Book Award in Poetry *

* Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award in Poetry * Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism * Winner of the NAACP Image Award...


for Science and Technology category winners

2014 selection

The Sixth Extinction

Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction 2015, Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Science and Technology 2014

by Elizabeth Kolbert

ONE OF THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW'S 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR

A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass...


2011 selection

Grand Pursuit: The Story of Economic Genius

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Science and Technology 2011

by Sylvia Nasar

In a sweeping narrative, the author of the megabestseller A Beautiful Mind takes us on a journey through modern history with the men and women who changed the lives of every single person on the planet. It’s...


2004 selection

The Whale and the Supercomputer

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Science and Technology 2004

by Charles Wohlforth

In The Whale and the Supercomputer, scientists and natives wrestle with our changing climate in the land where it has hit first--and hardest

A traditional Eskimo whale-hunting party races to shore near Barrow,...


2002 selection

Rosalind Franklin

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Science and Technology 2002

by Brenda Maddox

In 1962, Maurice Wilkins, Francis Crick, and James Watson received the Nobel Prize, but it was Rosalind Franklin's data and photographs of DNA that led to their discovery.

Brenda Maddox tells a powerful story...


for Young Adult Literature category winners

2017 selection

Long Way Down

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Literature 2017

by Jason Reynolds

A Newbery Honor Book

A Coretta Scott King Honor Book

A Printz Honor Book

A Los Angeles Times Book Prize Winner for Young Adult Literature

Longlisted for the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature...


2010 selection

A Conspiracy of Kings

The Queen's Thief #4

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Literature 2010

by Megan Whalen Turner

Discover the world of the Queen’s Thief

New York Times-bestselling author Megan Whalen Turner’s entrancing and award-winning Queen’s Thief novels bring to life the world of the epics and feature one of...


2004 selection

Doing It

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Literature 2004

by Melvin Burgess

Dino, Jonathan, and Ben have got some problems, mostly with Jackie, Deborah, and Alison.

Dino's finally convinced Jackie, the most beautiful girl in school, to go out with him. She drives him mad with lust, but...