Recent Award Winners - Nonfiction

National Book Award, 2023

The Rediscovery of America by Ned Blackhawk

A sweeping and overdue retelling of U.S. history that recognizes that Native Americans are essential to understanding the evolution of modern America.

The Baillie Gifford Prize, 2023

Fire Weather by John Vaillant

In May 2016, the city of Fort McMurray in Alberta, Canada, burned to the ground, forcing 88,000 people to flee their homes. It was the largest evacuation ever of a city in the face of a forest fire, raising the curtain on a new age of increasingly destructive wildfires.

Pulitzer Prize, 2023


Freedom's Dominion by Jefferson Cowie

A prize-winning historian chronicles a sinister idea of freedom: white Americans’ freedom to oppress others and their fight against the government that got in their way.

Pulitzer Prize, 2023


The Bancroft Prize, 2023

Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 2023


National Book Critics Circle Award, 2022


G-Man by Beverly Gage

This major new biography of the man who served for almost 50 years as FBI director looks at the full sweep of his life and career and how he planted the seeds for the today’s conservative political landscape.

Pulitzer Prize, 2023


National Book Critics Circle Award, 2022


Stay True by Hua Hsu

A New Yorker staff writer, in this gripping memoir on friendship, grief, the search for self and the solace that can be found through art, recounts his close friendship with Ken, with whom he endured the successes and humiliations of everyday college life until Ken was violently, senselessly taken away from him.

Pulitzer Prize, 2023

General Nonfiction

Dayton Literary Peace Prize, 2023


His Name is George Floyd by Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa

The events of that day are now tragically familiar: on May 25, 2020, George Floyd became the latest Black person to die at the hands of the police, murdered outside of a Minneapolis convenience store by white officer Derek Chauvin.... This biography of George Floyd shows the athletic young boy raised in the projects of Houston’s Third Ward who would become a father, a partner, a friend, and a man constantly in search of a better life.

PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay, 2023

A Left-Handed Woman by Judith Thurman

Judith Thurman, a prolific staff writer at The New Yorker for more than two decades, has gathered a selection of her essays and profiles in A Left-Handed Woman. They consider our culture in all its guises: literature, history, politics, gender, fashion, and art, though their paramount subject is the human condition.

PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award, 2023

Heartbreak by Florence Williams

After her 25-year marriage ends, a journalist reveals her personal insights and explores the cutting edge science of "social pain," including checking her blood for grief markers and receiving electrical shocks, to explain why heartbreak hurts so much.

PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography, 2023

Dilla Time by Dan Charnas

Equal parts musicology, biography, and cultural history, Dilla Time chronicles the invention of a new kind of beat by the most underappreciated musical genius of our time.

PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction, 2023

The Inheritors by Eve Fairbanks

Weaves together the stories of three ordinary South Africans over five tumultuous decades in a sweeping and exquisite look at what really happens when a country resolves to end white supremacy.

Carnegie Medal, 2023

An Immense World by Ed Yong

The Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times best-selling author of I Contain Multitudes examines how the world of animal senses can help us understand and transform the way we perceive our world.

The Bancroft Prize, 2023

Bad Mexicans by Kelly Lytle Hernandez

Bad Mexicans tells the dramatic story of the magonistas, the migrant rebels who sparked the 1910 Mexican Revolution from the United States.... Taking readers to the frontlines of the magonista uprising and the counterinsurgency campaign that failed to stop them, Kelly Lytle Hernandez puts the magonista revolt at the heart of U.S. history.

The Bancroft Prize, 2023

The Sewing Girl's Tale by John Wood Sweet

In 1793 New York, a seventeen-year-old seamstress, who was raped in the back room of a brothel, charged a gentleman with the crime, resulting in a raw courtroom drama that threatened both her and her assailant's lives--and shaped the development of American law.

Malott Prize for Recording Community Activism, 2022

The Water Defenders by Robin Broad and John Cavanagh

Based on over a decade of research and their own role as international allies of the community groups in El Salvador, the authors tell the story of ordinary people in this country who rallied together to prevent a global mining corporation from poisoning their main water source.

Helen Bernstein Book Award for Excellence in Journalism, 2023

The Treeline by Ben Rawlence

Combining reportage with the latest science, this journey is filled with the wonder and awe at the incredible creativity and resilience of trees and mysterious workings of the forest upon which we rely for the air we breathe.

Hurston Wright Legacy Award, 2022

Historical/Social/Political NF

Born in Blackness by Howard French

Revealing the central yet intentionally obliterated role of Africa in the creation of modernity, Born in Blackness vitally reframes our understanding of world history.

Kirkus Award, 2023

Our Migrant Souls by Hector Tobar

Our Migrant Souls assembles the Pulitzer Prize winner Héctor Tobar's personal experiences as the son of Guatemalan immigrants and the stories told to him by his Latinx students to offer a spirited rebuke to racist ideas about Latino people. Investigating topics that include the US-Mexico border "wall," urban segregation, gangs, and queer Latino utopias, Tobar journeys across the country to expose something truer about the meaning of "Latino" in the twenty-first century.

Lambda Award, 2023

LGBTQ+ Nonfiction

The Black Period by Hafizah Augustus Geter

Reclaiming her origin story as the queer daughter of a Muslim Nigerian immigrant and a Black American visual artist, the author creates a space for the beauty of Blackness, Islam, disability and queerness to flourish, emerging from the erasures America imposes to exist proudly and unabashedly as herself.

Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 2023

Autobiographical Prose

Solito by Javier Zamora

A young poet reflects on his 3,000-mile journey from El Salvador to the United States when he was nine years old, during which he was faced with perilous boat trips, relentless desert treks, pointed guns, arrests and deceptions during two life-altering months alongside a group of strangers who became an unexpected family.

Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 2023

Current Interest

Lady Justice by Dahlia Lithwick

With unparalleled access to her subjects, she [Lithwick] has written a luminous book, not about the villains of the Trump years, but about the heroes. A celebration of the tireless efforts, legal ingenuity, and indefatigable spirit of the women whose work all too often went unrecognized at the time...

Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 2023

Science & Technology

How Far the Light Reaches by Sabrina Imbler

Exploring themes of adaptation, survival, sexuality, and care, and weaving the wonders of marine biology with stories of their own family, relationships, and coming of age, How Far the Light Reaches is a book that invites us to envision wilder, grander, and more abundant possibilities for the way we live.

Los Angeles Times Book Prize, 2023


By Hands Now Known by Margaret A. Burnham

The director of Northeastern University's Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project examines the legal apparatus that helped sustain Jim Crow-era violence, focusing on a series of harrowing cases from 1920 to 1960.

National Book Critics Circle Award, 2022


The Method by Isaac Butler

This must read for any fan of Broadway or American film, a critic and theater director chronicles the history of Method acting—an enthusiastic and engaging story of creative discover