Los Angeles Times Book Prizes Ceremony April 26 at Royce Hall

LOS ANGELES, April 16, 2003--The 10 winners of the 23rd annual Los Angeles Times Book Prizes will be announced Saturday, April 26, during a 7:30 p.m. awards ceremony at UCLA's Royce Hall in Los Angeles.

The event is the highlight of the eighth annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, one of the nation's premier public literary festivals and the largest of its kind on the West Coast.

Award-winning author A. Scott Berg will emcee the ceremony. Berg is a winner of the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and author of the highly-acclaimed biographies "Lindbergh," "Max Perkins: Editor of Genius" and "Goldwyn."

The Los Angeles Times Book Prizes, established in 1980, recognize outstanding literary achievements in biography, current interest, history, poetry, science and technology, fiction, first fiction, mystery/thriller, and young adult fiction.

In addition, the Robert Kirsch Award annually recognizes the body of work of an author who resides in and/or whose work focuses on the Western United States. It is named after Robert Kirsch, The Times' book critic for more than 25 years prior to his death in 1980.

Presenting the nine category awards will be Gayle Anderson, Eric Lax, T. Jefferson Parker, George Plimpton, John Rechy, Dava Sobel, Ronald Steel, Susan Straight and Quincy Troupe. The Kirsch Award will be presented by author Jonathan Kirsch, son of the late book critic.

The 45 Book Prize finalists were announced March 7 at the National Arts Club in New York.

Ticket prices are $14 per person. Tickets may be purchased through the UCLA Central Ticket Office at 310/825-2101 or online at and through Ticketmaster at 213/365-3500 or Additional charges apply for online ticket orders.

Information about the Book Prize awards ceremony and awards program is available at or by calling 1-800-LA TIMES, ext. 72366.

Book Prize Finalists

• Gioconda Belli, "The Country under My Skin: A Memoir of Love and   War" [translated from the original Spanish by Kristina Cordero with the author]   (Alfred A. Knopf)
• Robert A. Caro, "Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol.   3" (Alfred A. Knopf)
•  Daniel Ellsberg, "Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon   Papers" (Viking)
• T.J. Stiles, " Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War" (Alfred A. Knopf)
• Claire Tomalin, " Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self" (Alfred A. Knopf)

Current Interest
• Timothy Ferris, "Seeing in the Dark: How Backyard Stargazers Are Probing   Deep Space and Guarding Earth from Interplanetary Peril" (Simon & Schuster)
• Judith Levine, "Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from   Sex" ( University of Minnesota Press)
• Nicolaus Mills and Kira Brunner (editors), "The New Killing Fields: Massacre   and the Politics of Intervention" (Basic Books)
•  Kevin Phillips, "Wealth and Democracy: A Political History of the American   Rich" (Broadway Books)
• Samantha Power, "A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of   Genocide" (Basic Books)

• Peter Cameron, "The City of Your Final Destination" (Farrar, Straus and   Giroux)
• Aleksandar Hemon, "Nowhere Man" (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday)
• Kate Jennings, "Moral Hazard" (Fourth Estate/HarperCollins)
• Ian McEwan, "Atonement" (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday)
• Joanna Scott, "Tourmaline" (Little, Brown and Company)

Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction
• Jay Basu, "The Stars Can Wait" ( Henry Holt and Company)
• Jonathan Safran Foer, "Everything Is Illuminated" (Houghton Mifflin Company)
• Nicole Krauss, "Man Walks into a Room" (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday)
• Hari Kunzru, "The Impressionist" (Dutton/Penguin Group (USA))
• Arthur Phillips, "Prague" (Random House)

(The Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction commemorates the work of the late Times book editor and Book Prize program founder.)

• Philip Dray, "At the Hands of Persons Unknown: The Lynching of Black   America" (Random House)
• Robert Harms, "The Diligent: A Voyage through the Worlds of the Slave   Trade" (Basic Books)
• Gregg Herken, "Brotherhood of the Bomb: The Tangled Lives and Loyalties of   Robert Oppenheimer, Ernest Lawrence, and Edward Teller" (A John Macrae   Book/Henry Holt)
• Mary Beth Norton, "In the Devil's Snare: The Salem Witchcraft Crisis of   1692" (Alfred A. Knopf)
• Michael B. Oren, "Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern   Middle East" (Oxford University Press)

• Stephen L. Carter, "The Emperor of Ocean Park" (Alfred A. Knopf)
• Tod Goldberg, "Living Dead Girl" (Soho Press)
• Henning Mankell, "One Step Behind" [translated from the original Swedish by   Ebba Segerberg] (The New Press)
• George P. Pelecanos, "Hell to Pay" (Little, Brown and Company)
• Scott Turow, "Reversible Errors" (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

• Terrance Hayes, "Hip Logic" (Penguin Books)
• John Koethe, "North Point North: New and Selected Poems" (HarperCollins   Publishers)
• J.D. McClatchy, "Hazmat: Poems" (Alfred A. Knopf)
• Harryette Mullen, "Sleeping with the Dictionary" (University of California   Press)
• Cynthia Zarin, "The Watercourse: Poems" (Alfred A. Knopf)

Science and Technology
• Deborah Blum, "Love at Goon Park: Harry Harlow and the Science of   Affection" (Perseus Publishing)
• Judith Hooper, "Of Moths and Men: An Evolutionary Tale, the Untold Story of   Science and the Peppered Moth" (W.W. Norton)
• Mark Kurlansky, "Salt: A World History" (Walker and Company)
• Brenda Maddox, "Rosalind Franklin: The Dark Lady of DNA" (HarperCollins   Publishers)
• Richard Preston, "The Demon in the Freezer: A True Story" (Random House)

Young Adult Fiction
• M.T. Anderson, "Feed" (Candlewick Press)
• Kate Banks, "Dillon Dillon" (Frances Foster Books/Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
• Sarah Dessen, "This Lullaby" (Viking/Penguin Young Readers Group)
• E.R. Frank, "America" (A Richard Jackson Book/Atheneum Books for Young   Readers)
• Joyce Carol Oates, "Big Mouth & Ugly Girl" (HarperTempest/HarperCollins)

Robert Kirsch Award
• There are no finalists for this category. The winner will be announced April 26.

Finalist Selection Process

Finalists were selected by eight three-member committees. Fiction category judges also chose the first fiction category finalists. Most of the judges are published authors and serve a two-year term. None of the judges, except for the Kirsch award, are current Los Angeles Times employees.

There is no nationality requirement for author nominees in any category. With the exception of significant new translations of a deceased author's work, all authors should be living at the time of qualifying U.S. publication.

The Book Prizes have honored numerous internationally distinguished literary figures including Ray Bradbury, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Ginsberg, Christopher Isherwood, Milan Kundera, Ursula Le Guin, Frank McCourt, David McCullough, Tillie Olsen, Carl Sagan and W.G. Sebald.

Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

The eighth annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books will be held April 26-27 on the UCLA campus. The festival will feature more than 325 of the country's best-selling authors, 95 author sessions, and seven stages showcasing book and poetry readings, cooking demonstrations, children's storytelling and cartoon characters, and music, drama and dance performances. More than 300 exhibitors including specialty booksellers and smaller publishers will also participate.

Admission is free to the public. General event information is available online at or by calling 1-800-LA TIMES, ext. 7BOOK. Detailed speaker and event information will be provided in the official festival program, which will be published in the April 20 edition of the Los Angeles Times.

The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books was created in 1996 to promote literacy, celebrate the written word, and bring together those who create books with the people who love to read them.

The Los Angeles Times, a Tribune Publishing company, is the largest metropolitan daily newspaper in the country and the winner of 30 Pulitzer Prizes, including three this year in national reporting, feature writing and feature photography. The Times publishes four daily regional editions covering the Los Angeles metropolitan area, Orange and Ventura counties and the San Fernando Valley, as well as a National edition.