Creative writing professor Tania James has been named to the longlist for the National Book Award—with her novel Loot one of the top ten contenders for the prize in the fiction category.
In its announcement, the National Book Foundation noted that James' novel is one of "two titles that study the effects of war within countries and communities."
"In Tania James’s epic 18th-century tale, Loot, a young woodcarver is commissioned by the sultan to build a life-size, mauling tiger automaton, which is stolen by the British," the announcement continues. "Spanning decades and ranging from India to Europe, this novel is an interrogation of war and colonialism that asks who has the right to claim ownership over art and history."
The final list of finalists for the award will be announced on Tuesday, October 3.
In addition to Loot, James the author of three other books, all published by Knopf: The Tusk That Did the Damage, which was a finalist for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and the Financial Times Oppenheimer Award; Aerogrammes and Other Stories, named a Best Book of 2012 by Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle; and the novel Atlas of Unknowns, which was a New York Times Editor’s Choice and a finalist for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature. Her short stories have appeared in Freeman’s: The Future of New Writing; Granta; The New Yorker; O, The Oprah Magazine; and One Story, among other places, and featured on Symphony Space Selected Shorts.
Find out more at James and her work at her website here.
September 15, 2023