Sunday, February 7, 2010

List: PEN/Faulkner Award Winners

The PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction is a national prize honoring "the best published works of fiction by American citizens in a calendar year." It is the largest peer-juried award in the country.

The award was founded in 1980 by members of the international writers’ organization PEN and is now governed by an independent foundation board. Named for William Faulkner, who used his Nobel Prize money to create an award for young writers, the aim of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation is to bring together "American writers and readers in a wide variety of programs to promote a love of literature."

So far, I have read 10 winners and have another 11 on my TBR shelf. Those I have read are in red; those currently on my TBR shelf are in blue.

2018 Improvement by Joan Silber

2017 Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

2016 Delicious Foods by James Hannaham

2015 Preparation for the Next Life by Atticus Lish

2014 We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler

2013 Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

2012 The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka

2011 The Collected Stories by Deborah Eisenberg

2010 War Dances by Sherman Alexie

2009 Netherland by Joseph O'Neill

2008 The Great Man by Kate Christensen

2007 Everyman by Philip Roth

2006 The March by E L Doctorow

2005 War Trash by Ha Jin

2004 The Early Stories: 1953-1975 by John Updike

2003 The Caprices by Sabina Murray

2002 Bel Canto by Ann Patchett (reviewed here)

2001 The Human Stain by Philip Roth (reviewed here)

2000 Waiting by Ha Jin

1999 The Hours by Michael Cunningham

1998 The Bear Comes Home by Rafi Zabor

1997 Women in Their Beds: New and Selected Stories by Gina Berriault

1996 Independence Day by Richard Ford

1995 Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson

1994 Operation Shylock: A Confession by Philip Roth

1993 Postcards by E. Annie Proulx

1992 Mao II by Don Delillo

1991 Philadelphia Fire by John Edgar Wideman

1990 Billy Bathgate by E. L. Doctorow

1989 Dusk and Other Stories by James Salter

1988 World's End by T. Coraghessan Boyle

1987 Soldiers in Hiding by Richard Wiley

1986 The Old Forest and Other Stories by Peter Taylor

1985 The Barracks Thief by Tobias Wolff

1984 Sent for You Yesterday by John Edgar Wideman

1983 Seaview by Toby Olson

1982 The Chaneysville Incident by David Bradley

1981 How German Is It = Wie Deutsch Ist Es by Walter Abish


Updated DXecember 31, 2018.


If you are reading these books and would like related posts to be listed here, please leave comments with links and I will add them.


  1. Great post! I really have never investigate the history of the award. I've only read The Hours and Waiting and enjoyed both.
    Many of the titles that have won have certainly been on my list.

  2. I've been meaning to do that with the Nobel. Right now I'm too busy with my list from The well-Educated Mind and The New Lifetime Reading Plan.

  3. Michelle -- I was surprised to see how many of these I had read and were on my shelves without me knowing that they had won this prize. I could make some progress without even paying attention. :)

    Auto -- Just what I need, more lists! Of course, I am heading over there right this minute. You may even inspire me to adopt another list or two.

  4. "Snow Falling on Cedars" rocked. That is such a great book. I love that you have all the lists for the awards that I can look at now when I am reviewing mine. :)


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