Frontlist | Medal for Excellence: Indian-American novelist shortlisted
Indian-American novelist Megha Majumdar’s book, “A Burning” is among the six books shortlisted by the American Library Association (ALA), Chicago. IL for the 2021 Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction.
The medal will be awarded for the previous year’s best fiction and nonfiction books written for adult readers and published in the United States. The two medal winners will be announced by 2021 selection committee chair Bill Kelly at the Reference and User Services Association’s Book and Media Awards (BMAs) event, which will take place online on Feb. 4, 2021, 3 pm CT.
Published by Alfred A. Knopf, A Burning was shortlisted in the fiction category. According to information on ALA’s website, Majumdar’s debut serves as a barometer measuring the seeming triviality of human life and the fragility of human connections.
After witnessing a gruesome train-station attack during her walk home to the slums, book protagonist Jivan responds to a Facebook post. Days later, she has been beaten, jailed, and accused of terrorism, and the two people who could possibly save her have other priorities.
Thanking ALA, Majumdar, who lives in New York City, tweeted, “My little Google doc, in the company of icons? I hope this feels like fuel to everybody finding 30 minutes during mornings and nights to write, slowly. Huge thanks to @ALALibrary”
Carnegie Medal winners will each receive $5,000. All the finalists will be honored during a celebratory event in the summer of 2021 during the ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition which the nation’s biggest library event.
The awards, established in 2012, serve as a guide to help adults select quality reading material. They are the first single-book awards for adult books given by the American Library Association and reflect the expert judgment and insight of library professionals and booksellers who work closely with adult readers.