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Thursday, December 6, 2007 2:28 pm
Dinaw Mengestu Wins the Guardian First Book
Posted by: Keir Graff

Dinaw Mengestu has won the Guardian First Book Award for his novel Children of the Revolution (that’s what they’re calling it in England, anyway–U.S. readers know it as The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears). From–where else?–the Guardian (“Ethiopian-American wins Guardian First Book Award,” by Sarah Crown):

Speaking after the award was presented at a ceremony in central London last night, the Guardian’s literary editor and chair of the judging panel Claire Armitstead said that while each of the shortlisted books had their champions, the economy and power with which Mengestu depicted the dead-end lives of his characters saw him emerge as the winner. “Unusually for a first novel, there is no slack in his writing, no authorial vanity to interfere with his evocation of immigrant life in 21st-century America,” she said.

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