Phil Klay and Claudia Rankine among finalists for PEN literary awards
Iraq War veteran Phil Klay continues to win accolades for “Redeployment,” a story collection based on his experience as a Marine. The book won a National Book Award last fall and a National Book Critics Circle Award in March, and on Thursday morning “Redeployment” was named a finalist for the $25,000 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for debut fiction.
Among the many other PEN literary awards finalists announced in New York is Claudia Rankine. “Citizen,” her book of prose poetry about race and racism in America, will compete for the $5,000 PEN/Open Book Award, given to “an exceptional book-length work of literature by an author of color.” Like Klay, Rankine also won a NBCC award last month.
The PEN American Center confers annual prizes in a number of categories, including essays, science writing, first
books and books in translation. Most of the winners — along with several career awards — will be announced May 13, but a few will not be revealed until the ceremony on June 8.
In a statement released Thursday, Suzanne Nossel, executive director of PEN American Center, said, “These shortlists represent a literary treasure trove including both beloved and well-known names as well as new writers for whom simply making the list can itself help begin to make a new writing career.