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2017 NC Book Awards

Nov 17, 2017

The strong literary tradition of North Carolina will be showcased again with presentation of the 2017 North Carolina Book Awards, Friday, Nov. 17, in Raleigh.

At their joint meeting, members of the N.C. Literary and Historical Association and the Federation of N.C. Historical Societies will renew their commitment to stimulate the production of literature and to collect and preserve historical material in North Carolina, and to recognize excellence in both areas.

The 1:30 p.m. free, public session will be in the Doubletree by Hilton, 1707 Hillsborough St., Raleigh. The first book award will be presented to Ali Standish of Raleigh, for “The Ethan I Was Before.” The award from the American Association of University Women for young people’s literature goes to a title that tackles death, guilt, loss and forgiveness in a coming-of-age tale.

Book awards also will be presented at a 7 p.m. ticketed dinner program at the Doubletree Inn. It will feature a keynote address, “From Slavery to Civil Rights: An Aural History Tour,” by Mary D. Williams, Duke University Center for Documentary Studies.

The Roanoke-Chowan Award for Poetry will be presented to Patricia Hooper of Gastonia, for “Separate Flights,” a collection of poems said to “sneak up on the reader and stun,” and that pays “attention to the ways in which angle of vision alters our perspective of the world.”

Danny Johnson of Durham will receive the Sir Walter Award for Fiction for “The Last Road Home,” a book about the trials and tribulations of an orphaned young boy who comes to live with grandparents in North Carolina and befriends the sharecropper children next door. It explores race relations, first love, and coming of age in the 1950s and ’60s.

The Ragan Old North State Award for Nonfiction will be presented to Leonard Rogoff for “Gertrude Weil: Jewish Progressive in the New South.” It is the first major biography of Weil, who was born in 1879 to a prominent family in Goldsboro and fought passionately for progressive causes of the day. It is a story of sisterhood across religious boundaries, intellectual and political commitments, and wealth used to improve society.

The R.D.W. Connor Award goes to Thomas L. Howard III of Charlottesville, Va., for “The State that Said No: The Fight for Ratification of the Federal Constitution in North Carolina,” as the best article published in the “North Carolina Historical Review” in 2017. 

The Hugh T. Lefler Award will be presented to Andrew C. Turner of Greenville, for the best paper by an undergraduate in 2017 on North Carolina History. Prepared for a class at East Carolina University, the paper dealt with the common people during the Fort Macon campaign.

The R. Hunt Parker Award for Literary Achievement will be presented to Margaret Bauer of Greenville, English professor and editor of the “North Carolina Literary Review” for more than 20 years.

EbzB Productions of Apex, represented by Sarah Ebhardt and David zum Brunnen, will receive the Hardee Rives Award for Dramatic Arts.

The Christopher Crittenden Memorial Award for lifetime contributions to North Carolina history will be presented to Harry Watson of Chapel Hill.

The Federation of N.C. Historical Societies Albert Ray Newsome Award recognizes local history preservation efforts. This year’s recipient, the Jones County Historical Society, has been working for more than two decades to make architectural surveys of the county’s historic structures accessible to the public.

Student awards also are presented during the free afternoon program. The Student Publication Awards, High School Division, recipients are: “Portraits in Ink,” Durham School of the Arts, first place; “Stone Soup,” Enloe High School, Raleigh, second place; “Drop Box,” Carolina Day School, Asheville, third place.

Middle School Division Awards recipients are “Illusions,” Martin Middle School, Raleigh, first place; “The Paw Print,” Culbreth Middle School, Chapel Hill, second place; “P@w Printz,” Randleman Middle School, Randleman, third place.

Tickets are available to the evening program. Make $45 checks payable to the N.C. Literary and Historical Association and mail to NCLHA, 4610 MSC, Raleigh, N.C. 27699. To pay by PayPal, visit website http://litandhist.ncdcr.gov/Programs.aspx.  Registration ends Nov. 10.

For additional information on the North Carolina Book Awards, please call (919) 807-7290. The Office of Archives and History is within the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources and administers the program.


Nov 17, 2017