Seeing as how the Pulitzer didn’t go to any work of Fiction this year, some of the better experts out there decided to award it themselves. Our very own Jean Thompson was given some major props in the New York Times today as a result, with NYT Book Review Editor Gregory Cowles naming her The Year We Left Home as his choice for the award:
With that in mind, one book that might have broken through the committee’s stalemate this year is “The Year We Left Home,” by Jean Thompson. This ambitious, expansive novel opens at a wedding in small-town Iowa in 1973 and closes in the same small town 30 years later; in between, in chapters that hold their own as stand-alone stories, it follows the members of the Erickson family as they fumble their various ways through life. … Anyone who thinks the Pulitzer committee messed up — who believes they did a disservice to literature by ignoring the three excellent finalists and every other work of American fiction published in 2011 — could do worse than reading “The Year We Left Home” as a consolation prize.
No surprise really. She’s kind of totally amazing.