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Library News Release

Release Date: 09/10/2013

Washington Center for the Book announces 2013 Washington State Book Award winners

2013 Washington State Book Awards

The Washington Center for the Book at The Seattle Public Library announces the winners of the 2013 Washington State Book Awards for six outstanding books published by Washington authors in 2012.


A party to celebrate the winners and finalists of the Washington State Book Awards will be held from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, at Richard Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave. This event is open to the public and free of charge. Light refreshments will be served. The celebration is sponsored by The Seattle Public Library Foundation and Richard Hugo House.

This is the 47th year of the program, formerly called the Governor's Writers Awards.


A book award is given based on the strength of the publication's literary merit, lasting importance and overall quality.


The 2013 Washington State Book Award winners are:



  • "The Orchardist" by Amanda Coplin, who was born in Washington state and now lives in Portland, Ore. (HarperCollins Publishers)


Fiction Finalists:

  • "Blueprints of the Afterlife" by Ryan Boudinot, of Capitol Hill (Grove/Atlantic)
  • "The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving" by Jonathan Evison, of Bainbridge Island (Algonquin Books)
  • "Happiness Is a Chemical in the Brain" by Lucia Perillo, of Olympia (W.W. Norton & Co.)
  • "Beautiful Ruins" by Jess Walter, of Spokane (HarperCollins Publishers)


  • "Plume" by Kathleen Flenniken, of View Ridge (University of Washington Press)


Poetry Finalists:

  • "Theophobia" by Bruce Beasley, of Bellingham (BOA Editions, Ltd.)
  • "Raptor" by Andrew Feld, of Wedgewood (University of Chicago Press)
  • "Here I Throw Down My Heart" by Colleen McElroy, of Queen Anne (University of Pittsburgh Press)
  • "Lacemakers" by Claire McQuerry, who was born in Washington state and now lives in Columbus, Mo. (Southern Illinois University Press)



  • "Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis" by Timothy Egan, of Mount Baker (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)


Biography/Memoir Finalists:

  • "Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo & Me" by Ellen Forney, of Capitol Hill (Gotham Books)
  • "What It Is Like to Go to War" by Karl Marlantes, of Woodinville (Grove/Atlantic)
  • "The Boy Kings of Texas" by Domingo Martinez, of Queen Anne (Lyons Press)

History/General Nonfiction:

  • "The Rocks Don't Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah's Flood" by David Montgomery, of Green Lake (W.W. Norton & Co.)


History/General Nonfiction Finalists:

  • "The Lost Bank: The Story of the Biggest Bank Failure in American History" by Kirsten Grind, of Ballard (Simon & Schuster)
  • "Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West" by Blaine Harden, of Capitol Hill (Viking Press)
  • "David Douglas, A Naturalist at Work: An Illustrated Exploration Across Two Centuries in the Pacific Northwest" by Jack Nisbet, of Spokane (Sasquatch Books)
  • "Former People: The Final Days of the Russian Aristocracy" by Douglas Smith, of Queen Anne (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)


The winners of the Scandiuzzi Children's Book Award are:


Picture Book:

  • "Those Rebels, John & Tom," by Barbara Kerley of Portland, Ore., illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham, of Ballard (Scholastic Press)


Honorable Mention:
"A Birthday for Bear" by Bonny Becker, of Ravenna, illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton, of Ontario (Candlewick Press)


Young Adults (13- to 18-year-old readers):

  • "The Wicked and the Just" by J. Anderson Coats, of Everett (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers)


Honorable Mention:
"Liberty's Christmas" by Randall Platt, of Port Orchard (Texas Tech University Press)


The authors of the six award-winning books, as well as the illustrator of the picture book, will receive a $500 honorarium, thanks to the generous support of The Seattle Public Library Foundation, Eulalie and Carlo Scandiuzzi, and Grace Nordhoff.


The jury for the adult awards included Beth Blakesley, associate dean of libraries, Washington State University, Pullman; Stesha Brandon, program director, Town Hall; Kevin Craft, executive editor, Poetry Northwest, and chair, English Department, Everett Community College; and Jamil Zaidi, bookseller, buyer, assistant manager, The Elliott Bay Book Co.


The jury for the Scandiuzzi Children's Book Award included Tom Brown, librarian, Laurelhurst Elementary; René Kirkpatrick, co-owner, Eagle Harbor Book Co., Bainbridge Island; and Maren Ostergard, early literacy and children's outreach librarian, King County Library System.

For more information contact:


Linda Johns, Coordinator for Washington Center for the Book

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