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Finalists Announced for 82nd Annual California Book Awards

                                                Poetry, Young Adult, Juvenile,
                                         First Fiction, Fiction, and Nonfiction

                                    Winners announced: Week of April 29, 2013
                              Awards Ceremony: Thursday June 6, 2013 at 6 p.m.

SAN FRANCISCO –  April  15, 2013 - The Commonwealth Club is pleased to announce this year’s finalists for the California Book Awards.  During the week of April 29th, winners in all six categories – poetry, young adult, juvenile, first fiction, fiction, and nonfiction – as well as two special categories – Notable Contribution to Publishing and Californiana – will be announced to the public. Book lovers from around the state will gather on Thursday, June 6, at 6pm at 595 Market Street, 2nd floor, in San Francisco to recognize the winners at a special program and reception.  For tickets, go to or call our box office at 415/597-6700/6705.

The California Book Awards jury director, Mary Ellen Hannibal, said that “California's literary tradition is alive and well was in ample evidence this year --  the book jury read hundreds of submissions across multiple categories.  We absorbed, we compared, we argued, we deliberated, and we came up with a vibrant group of finalists.  Although we will decide on winners, to be announced April 30, the truth is that all these finalists are fine books and deserve special praise.”


The 82nd Annual California Book Awards ceremony will take place on Thursday June 6, 2013 at 6 pm at the Commonwealth Club, 595 Market Street in San Francisco. This year’s awards presentation is once again being sponsored by Bank of the West. The event is open to the public. A gourmet hors d’oeuvres and wine reception will begin at 5:00 p.m. and the awards presentation will follow at 6 p.m. A book-signing and dessert reception will take place immediately following the ceremony.


FINALISTS for the 82nd Annual California Book Awards for books published in 2012:

Sea and Fog by: Etel Adnan        

Journey to the Sun by: Brent Cunningham          

After Urgency by: Rusty Morrison           

Citizen by: Aaron Shurin               

Hurrah's Nest by: Arisa White

Out of Reach by: Carrie Arcos

Grave Mercy by: Robin LaFevers              

Second Chance Summer by: Morgan Matson

A Soldier’s Secret: The Incredible True Story of Sarah Edmonds, a Civil War Hero by: Marissa Moss           

Who Could That Be at This Hour? All the Wrong Questions, Book One by: Lemony Snicket            

The One and Only Ivan by: Katherine Applegate               

Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building by: Christy Hale

The Five Lives of Our Cat Zook by: Joanne Rocklin            

The Seven Tales of Trinket by: Shelley Moore Thomas   

Baby Bear Sees Blue by: Ashley Wolff
A Partial History of Lost Causes by: Jennifer duBois

A Working Theory of Love by: Scott Hutchins     

Masha'allah and Other Stories by: Mariah K. Young         

Monstress by: Lysley Tenorio

Telegraph Avenue by: Michael Chabon 

A Hologram for the King by: Dave Eggers

The Orphan Master's Son by: Adam Johnson

Zoobiquity by: Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and Kathryn Bowers

The Lady in Gold: The Extraordinary Tale of Gustav Klimt's Masterpiece, Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer by: Anne-Marie O’Connor

God’s Hotel: A Doctor, A Hospital, and A Pilgrimage to the Heart of Medicine by: Victoria Sweet

Beyond Nature's Housekeepers: American Women in Environmental History by: Nancy C. Unger



Since 1931, the California Book Awards have honored the exceptional literary merit of California writers and publishers. Each year a select jury considers hundreds of books from around the state in search of the very best in literary achievement.  Eligible books must be written while the author is a resident in California, and must be published during the year under consideration.

The California Book Awards have often been on the vanguard, honoring previously unknown authors who go on to garner national acclaim. John Steinbeck received three gold medals – for Tortilla Flat in 1935, In Dubious Battle in 1936 and The Grapes of Wrath in 1939.
Last year’s winners include: Giovanni Singleton, Jason Felch and Ralph Frammolino, Alice LaPlante, Héctor Tobar, Joanne Rocklin, David Rains Wallace,  
Founded in 1903, The Commonwealth Club of California is the nation’s oldest and largest public affairs forum, with more than 18,000 members. The Club hosts speeches, debates and discussions on topics of regional, national and international interest.

About Bank of the West

Founded in 1874, $63 billion-asset Bank of the West (, member FDIC and equal housing lender, offers a wide range of personal, commercial, wealth management and international banking services. The bank operates more than 600 retail and commercial banking locations in 19 Western and Midwestern states. Bank of the West is a subsidiary of BNP Paribas, which has a presence in 80 countries with nearly 200,000 employees.