Thirty-five books have been chosen as finalists in the 23rd annual Oklahoma Book Award competition. Winners in the categories of fiction, poetry, design/illustration, children/young adult and nonfiction will be announced at a banquet April 14 at the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame and Jim Thorpe Museum. Master of ceremonies will be former Lt. Gov. Jari Askins.
Sponsored by the Friends of the Oklahoma Center for the Book, the awards recognize books written the previous year by Oklahomans or about Oklahoma. Of the 35 book finalists, 25 were by authors, designers or illustrators who reside in Oklahoma. This year, 121 books were submitted in the competition.
In addition to the literary awards, Chandler resident and children's book author Anna Myers will be presented with the Arrell Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is named for Norman historian Arrell Gibson, who served as the first president of the Oklahoma Center for the Book.
The 2012 finalists and their categories are:
Children/Young Adult: “Stealing Kevin's Heart” by M. Scott Carter, “Chikasha Stories, Volume 1: Shared Spirit,” by Glenda Galvan, “The Revenant” by Sonia Gensler, “Hereafter” by Tara Hudson, “The Grave Robber's Secret” by Anna Myers, “The Snow Blew Inn” by Dian Curtis Regan, “Mr. Duck Means Business” by Tammi Sauer.
Design/Illustration: “The Eugene B. Adkins Collection” designed by Eric Anderson, “Shooting from the Hip: Photographs and Essays by J. Don Cook” designed by Julie Rushing and Tony Roberts, “Route 66 Sightings” photographed and designed by Shellee Graham, Jerry McClanahan and Jim Ross, “Forging a Nation: The American History Collection of Gilcrease Museum” with photography by Robert S. Cross and design by Carol Haralson, “To Capture the Sun: Gold of Ancient Panama” designed by Carol Haralson, “Ilimpa'chi' (We're Gonna Eat!): A Chickasaw Cookbook” designed by Aaron Long and Skip McKinstry.
Fiction: “Cold Glory” by B. Kent Anderson, “Crying Blood” by Donis Casey, “The American Cafe” by Sara Sue Hoklotubbe, “Along The Watchtower” by Constance Squires, “Broken Wings” by Carla Stewart, “Strangers & Exiles” by Marlene Reed Wetzel, “Dandelion Summer” by Lisa Wingate.
Non-Fiction: “The Oklahoma State Capitol: A History of Our Seat of Government” by Bob Burke, “The Cherokee Syllabary: Writing the People's Perseverance” by Ellen Cushman, “Stories of Old-Time Oklahoma” by David Dary, “Forging a Nation: The American History Collection at Gilcrease Museum” by Amanda Lett, Randy Ramer, Kimberly Roblin and Eric Singleton, “Dynamic Chickasaw Women” by Judy Goforth Parker and Phillip Carroll Morgan, “An American Betrayal: Cherokee Patriots and the Trail of Tears” by Daniel Blake Smith, “David Crockett: The Lion of the West” by Michael Wallis, “The Wild West 365” by Michael Wallis, “Will Rogers: A Political Life,” by Richard D. White Jr.
Poetry: “The River White: A Confluence of Brush & Quill” by Ken Hada, “Depending on the Weather” by Abigail Keegan, “Leaving Holes & Selected New Writings” by Joe Dale Tate Nevaquaya, “Hail Mary, On Two” by Jim Spurr, “Dreaming Sam Peckinpah” by W.K. Stratton, “In the Shadow of Asclepius: Poems from American Medicine” by Howard F. Stein.