SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

November 2, 2012

National Book Awards to be announced this month

By Will Broaddus Staff writer
The Salem News

---- — The National Book Awards have been handed out since 1950, and this year will be awarded on Nov. 14 in New York.

The winners are selected by five-member panels in four categories: fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young people’s literature.

Tricia Arrington, head of circulation at Peabody Institute Library in Danvers, was pretty sure they had all of the fiction titles in their collection.

“If we don’t, then somebody in North of Boston Library Exchange does,” she said.

Donna Maturi, head of reference services at Danvers, has read and highly recommends one of the fiction nominees, “This is How You Lose Her” by Junot Diaz.

“He’s a wonderful writer,” she said. “He has a very interesting background. You will learn a lot about the Dominican Republic, and about that culture, but more importantly about the transition from a citizen outside to the U.S., and what being an immigrant in the 21st century is all about.”

On this level, the book resonated with Maturi’s personal experience.

“When I was growing up — I’m second-generation — we were told to assimilate,” she said. “So it’s wonderful to read about these things, the disconnects, and things you go through.”

It also provided a window into a realm of experience that differs from her own.

“It’s a great book for guys,” she said. “It’s a male perspective, which is always interesting and kind of fun.”

All the nominees are listed at the “Read This!” blog at the library’s website, danversreads.wordpress.com.