Los Angeles Times Names Book Prize Winners

LOS ANGELES, April 28, 2003 --The Los Angeles Times Book Prizes presented its annual Robert Kirsch Award for lifetime achievement to Larry McMurtry, author of 25 novels including the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Lonesome Dove" and "Terms of Endearment," of which the movie version won an Academy Award.

McMurtry's works also include "Sin Killer," "Horseman, Pass By," "The Last Picture Show," "In a Narrow Grave: Essays on Texas," "Desert Rose," "Texasville," "Streets of Laredo," "Dead Man's Walk," "Comanche Moon" and "Crazy Horse." He lives in Archer City, Texas.

McMurtry and nine other Book Prize winners were honored during the 23rd annual awards ceremony held Saturday evening, April 26, at UCLA's Royce Hall. Each winner will receive a $1,000 cash award.

The Robert Kirsch Award, presented by author Jonathan Kirsch, recognizes the body of work of an author who resides in and/or whose work focuses on the Western United States and whose contributions to American letters merit body-of-work recognition. There are no finalists for the Robert Kirsch Award.

The late Robert Kirsch served as The Times' book critic for more than 25 years prior to his death in 1980. He was a novelist, editor and teacher as well as one of the nation's foremost book critics.

Award-winning author A. Scott Berg served as ceremony emcee. 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."

Book Prize winners

• Biography – Robert A. Caro, "Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon   Johnson, Vol. 3" (Alfred A. Knopf). Presented by Eric Lax.
• Current Interest – Judith Levine, "Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting   Children from Sex" ( University of Minnesota Press). Presented by George   Plimpton.
• Fiction – Ian McEwan, "Atonement" (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday). Presented   by John Rechy.
• First Fiction (Art Seidenbaum Award) – Arthur Phillips, "Prague" (Random   House). Presented by Susan Straight.
• History – Michael B. Oren, "Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of   the Modern Middle East" (Oxford University Press). Presented by Ronald   Steel.
• Mystery/Thriller – George P. Pelecanos, "Hell to Pay" (Little, Brown and   Company). Presented by T. Jefferson Parker.
• Poetry – Cynthia Zarin, "The Watercourse: Poems" (Alfred A. Knopf).   Presented by Quincy Troupe.
• Science and Technology – Brenda Maddox, "Rosalind Franklin: The Dark   Lady of DNA" (HarperCollins Publishers). Presented by Dava Sobel.
• Young Adult Fiction – M.T. Anderson, "Feed" (Candlewick Press). Presented   by Gayle Anderson.

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)
•  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)
• 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)
• 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))

(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)

• 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)
• 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)

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)
• Richard Preston, "The Demon in the Freezer: A True Story" (Random House)

Young Adult Fiction
• 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)

About the Book Prizes

The Los Angeles Times Book Prizes were established in 1980.

Finalists and winners in the nine subject categories were selected by eight three-member committees. Fiction category judges also chose the first fiction category finalists and winner. 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.

Information about the Book Prize awards ceremony and awards

program is available at

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.