Photo: Graham Jepson
Kingsolver among speakers at Book Expo America kick-off event
New York City, June 5, 2012—Barbara Kingsolver joined Master of Ceremonies Stephen Colbert and authors Junot Diaz and Jo Nesbo on stage at the Book Expo America “Authors Breakfast” June 5, 2012.
To learn more about the event or to read interviews Kingsolver gave while at the BEA, click:
Susan Nussbaum announced winner of 2012 PEN / Bellwether Prize
New York City, June 5, 2012—PEN American Center, the largest branch of the world’s oldest literary and human rights organization, joined Barbara Kingsolver, founder of the Bellwether Prize, and Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, a division of Workman Publishing, to announce Susan Nussbaum as the winner of the 2012 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction. Nussbaum received $25,000 and a publishing contract with Algonquin Books for her manuscript Good Kings Bad Kings.
Nussbaum traveled to New York City for the announcement, which was made by Barbara Kingsolver at BookExpo America, in the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Kingsolver and Nussbaum were joined by PEN president Peter Godwin, Algonquin Books, and previous Bellwether winners Heidi Durrow (The Girl Who Fell from the Sky) and Hillary Jordan (Mudbound) at the press conference for editors, publishers, agents, press, booksellers, and librarians from around the country. (Click http://www.algonquinbooksblog.com/blog/pen-bellwether-prize/ for more information.)
Kingsolver reads from new work at Lexington, Ky., conference
Barbara Kingsolver will be the keynote speaker for the Books-in-Progress Conference June 8 and 9, sponsored by The Carnegie Center in Lexington, Ky. She will read from new work June 8 at 7 p.m., at the Lexington Convention Center’s Bluegrass Ballroom Atrium. The conference will offer writing and publishing workshops, as well as one-on-one meetings between writers and literary agents. Go to http://carnegiecenterlex.org/events/books-in-progress-conference/ for more information.
Kingsolver, Mattea take stage together
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.: Barbara Kingsolver joined Grammy-award winning singer Kathy Mattea for "A View from the Mountaintop," an evening of spoken word and song at the Bijou Theatre on March 11. The two celebrated their shared Appalachian heritage and cast a spotlight on mountaintop removal mining. The controversial practice has destroyed more than 500 mountains across Appalachia and presents a looming threat to Tennessee's mountains on the Cumberland Plateau.
Kathy Mattea, a native of West Virginia, has won two Grammys and has twice been named Female Vocalist of the Year by the Country Music Association. Her recordings intertwine Celtic, gospel, and bluegrass influences with the folk and acoustic music that have always served as her artistic anchor. Her most recent CD, the Grammy-nominated, Coal, celebrates the culture of Appalachia.
The evening was sponsored by LEAF (Lindquist Environmental Appalachian Fellowship), a non-profit, non-denominational fellowship of Tennesseans whose faith leads them to take action for Tennessee's environment. LEAF seeks to protect Tennessee's highest ridgelines by working for the passage of the Tennessee Scenic Vistas Protection Act that is currently under consideration by the Tennessee Legislature. For more information on mountaintop removal and its impact in Tennessee: www.tnleaf.org.
Photo by Andy Snow
Kingsolver receives Dayton Literary Peace Prize Nov. 12-13, 2011
Dayton, OH – Author Barbara Kingsolver received the first-ever Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award.
The award, which was formerly known as the Lifetime Achievement Award, was renamed in honor of the late Richard C. Holbrooke, the celebrated U.S. diplomat who played an instrumental role in negotiating the historic 1995 Dayton Peace Accords, which ended the war in Bosnia. It was presented to Kingsolver by journalist Kati Marton, Holbrooke’s widow, at a gala ceremony in Dayton. Holbrooke had been serving as special advisor on Afghanistan and Pakistan under President Obama when he passed away in December 2010.
Kingsolver joined the ranks of past winners of the award, including Studs Terkel (2006), Elie Wiesel (2007), Taylor Branch (2008), Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDun (2009), and Geraldine Brooks (2010).
Emory & Henry College features Kingsolver for 2011 Literary Festival
Barbara Kingsolver was the featured author for this year’s Emory & Henry College Literary Festival Sept. 29-30. She gave a reading and public interview for the festival, while three noted scholars presented papers and reviews of her work.
Linda Wagner-Martin, professor of English at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, presented a paper entitled “Keeping an Eye on Paradise:’ The Exuberance of Prodigal Summer.” Meredith Sue Willis, adjunct assistant professor of Creative Writing, New York University, presented a paper entitled “Not Missing from The Lacuna: A Private Life in a Political World,” while Sandra Ballard, professor of English at Appalachian State University and editor of The Appalachian Journal, presented a paper entitled “‘Disclosing the Heart of the Form’: An Appreciation of Barbara Kingsolver’s Nonfiction.”
Steve Fisher, professor emeritus at Emory & Henry and a well-known scholar of Appalachian studies, conducted the interview with the author, which, along with all the proceedings of the festival, will be published in an upcoming issue of The Iron Mountain Review.
Compassion in difficult times focus of 2011 commencement address
Barbara Kingsolver presented the 2011 Commencement Address for Emory & Henry College May 7. The college is located in Emory, Va., very near where a deadly tornado struck in Glade Spring, Va., on April 28, and near where Kingsolver lives. She said to the new graduates, who had responded to the tragedy in large numbers the night of the tornado: “Now you have seen what a world of agitated molecules can do and how a community of compassionate individuals can respond.”
Kingsolver receives Duke Leaf Award
Barbara Kingsolver was the recipient of the 2011 Duke LEAF Award for Lifetime Environmental Achievement in the Fine Arts, presented by the Nicholas School of the Environment on April 9.
The Lacuna released in paperback
The Lacuna was released in paperback by HarperCollins in September, 2010. Visit your local independent bookstore or order from IndieBound.org.
The Lacuna published to rave reviews in France
The Lacuna has been published in France under the title “Un Autre Monde.” Beautifully translated by Martine Aubert, the novel was described in the premiere French literary review journal as “vertiginous.” Below is an extract of the review by Nils C. Ahl in Le Monde des Livres, followed by a link to the full text.
Une fable américaine
En restituant la part mystérieuse d'une vie, Barbara Kingsolver concilie avec brio intentions politiques et littéraires. A laisser courir les sept cents pages serrées de ce roman sous la pulpe de son doigt, on est pris de vertige. Au chapitre des mises en garde, certes, l'endurance est de mise. Ou un jour de congé. Car sa poétique est si dense qu'elle souffre quand on l'interrompt : un défaut, peut-être, mais en forme de qualité. Et la plupart des lecteurs ne s'étonneront pas d'en venir à bout : le voyage est d'un rare confort, et la langue plastique et poétique de Barbara Kingsolver rend l'ensemble d'une saisissante fluidité. A la réflexion, le vertige vient d'ailleurs.
The Lacuna also has been published in the United Kingdom, and is being translated in Croatia, Russia, Romania, Norway, Italy, Brazil, Isreal, Taiwan, China, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Denmark, Poland, Serbia, Greece, S. Korea, and Turkey.
In summer 2010 the author worked closely with Mexican translator Elisa Ramirez Castañeda on the Spanish translation of The Lacuna. In a Spanish-language publishing industry powerfully dominated by Spain, Kingsolver is pleased to have secured a New World translator for this Mexico-inspired novel.
Kingsolver receives Library of Virginia fiction award
The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver was the winner of the fiction prize at the 13th Annual Library of Virginia Literary Awards October 16, hosted by award-winning Virginia author Adriana Trigiani. The evening celebrated a remarkable list of authors, including Lee Smith, David Baldacci and Jeanette Walls.
The awards are presented each year for the best books by a Virginia author in the fields of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. A special award is also given each year for lifetime achievement in any literary field.
According to a Library of Virginia press release, judges felt Kingsolver’s novel “was the achievement of a literary artist at the peak of her skills.”
Kingsolver wins Orange Prize for Fiction
Barbara Kingsolver has won the 2010 Orange Prize for Fiction for The Lacuna.
Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Cornwall, presented the author with the Prize at an awards ceremony at the Royal Festival Hall in central London June 9, hosted by Orange Prize for Fiction Co-Founder and Honorary Director Kate Mosse.
Celebrating its fifteenth anniversary this year, the Prize celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women’s writing from throughout the world. The winner receives a check for £30,000 and a limited edition bronze known as a "Bessie," created and donated by the artist Grizel Niven. Both are anonymously endowed.
Daisy Goodwin, Chair of Judges, who announced the winning author at the ceremony, said: “We had very different tastes on the panel, but in the end we went for passion not compromise. We chose The Lacuna because it is a book of breathtaking scale and shattering moments of poignancy.”
Bellwether Prize winner announced
The 2010 winner of the Bellwether Prize for Fiction, the largest monetary prize for unpublished fiction in North America, has been announced: Naomi Benaron of Tucson has won the $25,000 award and publication with the Bellwether’s partner publisher, Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, N.C. The announcement marked the award’s 10th anniversary.
Established by Barbara Kingsolver, the Bellwether Prize is awarded biennially to an unpublished novel manuscript by a writer who has previously published articles or short stories but not a major novel. The prize is designed to be a career-founding event for writers with outstanding literary skills, moral passion, and the courage to combine these strengths in unusually powerful fiction.
To learn more, see http://www.pen.org/page.php/prmID/2145.