Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See, published by Scribner, was awarded the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. This year’s jury consisted of Elizabeth Taylor, literary editor of the Chicago Tribune; Alan Cheuse, author, writer and NPR book commentator; and David Haynes, profesor of English and director of creative writing, Southern Methodist University. The jury recognized Doerr for “an imaginative and intricate novel inspired by the horrors of World War II and written in short, elegant chapters that explore human nature and the contradictory power of technology.” Besides bragging rights to the award, an elegant dinner with literary types, Doerr receives a cash award of $10,000 — hopefully not in the form of a massive oversized check that lottery winners typically hold before the sea of TV cameras.
So who are the finalists? you ask. Richard Ford’s Let Me Be Frank with You, which the jury describes as “an unflinching series of narratives, set in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, insightfully portraying a society in decline;” Laila Lalami’s The Moor’s Account, “a creative narrative of the ill-fated 16th century Spanish expedition to Florida, compassionately imagined out of the gaps and silences of history;” and Joyce Carol Oates’s Lovely, Dark, Deep, a rich collection of stories told from many rungs of the social ladder and distinguished by their intelligence, language and technique.
The 2015 Pulitzer Prize Winners in Letters and Drama:
Fiction: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Drama: Between Riverside and Crazy by Stephen Guirgis
History: Encounters at the Heart of the World: A History of the Mandan People by Elizabeth A. Fenn
Biography: The Pope and Mussolini: The Secret History of Pius XI and the Rise of Fascism in Europe by David I. Kertzer
Poetry: Digest by Gregory Pardlo
General Nonfiction: The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert
For further reading: http://www.pulitzer.org/awards/2015