The Prairie Schooner Book Prize


The Prairie Schooner Book Prize

Tenth Anniversary Reader

Edited by James Engelhardt and Marianne Kunkel
With a foreword by Hilda Raz

288 pages


March 2013


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eBook (EPUB)
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April 2020


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eBook (PDF)
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March 2013


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About the Book

After ten years of selecting great books from writers, new and established, Prairie Schooner celebrates the first decade of its Book Prize series by offering this collection of excerpts from each year’s winners in fiction and poetry. Writers such as Brock Clarke, Anne Finger, Rynn Williams, and Paul Guest open windows to ordinary and fantastic experience showcasing the liveliness and power of contemporary literature. Greg Hrbek’s darkly comic, genre-bending tales stand alongside Ted Gilley’s stories about achieving bliss through pain and John Keeble’s reflections on community and the difficulty of love. Here Shane Book’s poems serve as an elegiac witness to suffering, while Kathleen Flenniken’s poems consider ordinary women constructing their own significance, and Kara Candito’s explore sex, loss, and human passions.

Whether the topic is fantastic or quotidian, childbirth or monsters, South American airplane disaster or suburban Wisconsin, this writing carries us to the furthest reaches of human experience.

Author Bio

James Engelhardt is acquisitions editor at the University of Alaska Press and the former managing editor of Prairie Schooner. Marianne Kunkel is the managing editor of Prairie Schooner.


“The Prairie Schooner Book Prize series has brought a host of wonderful writers to us. This anthology shines with new and familiar voices—voices often made familiar by being chosen as contest winners. An anthology to cherish.”—Stephen Dunn, author of the Pulitzer Prize–winner Different Hours

“An invaluable, wonderful, delicious, and exciting collection of important writing. It is a trustworthy snapshot of the literary scene from the last ten years. Some voices we have heard, and all voices we will be—without a doubt—hearing more from in the future. For anyone interested in the best of the current state of wordsmithery, this anthology is an excellent place to start.”—Randall Kenan, author of Let the Dead Bury Their Dead

“These fine poems and stories offer intense pleasure as they enlarge the range of human perception. The best part is that when you find writers here who speak powerfully to you, there’s more—you can enjoy each book in the Prairie Schooner Book Prize series.”—Peggy Shumaker, former Alaska State Writer Laureate and author of Gnawed Bones

Table of Contents

Foreword by Hilda Raz
Cortney Davis
     "Leopold's Maneuvers"
     "March 28, 2001 / March 28, 1945"
K.L. Cook
     "Last Call"
Rynn Williams
     "The Sample Makers"
     "Big Yard"
Brock Clarke
     "The Fund-Raiser's Dance Card"
Kathleen Flenniken
     "Murder Mystery"
John Keeble
     ""The Cross"
Paul Guest
     "These Arms of Mine"
Jesse Lee Kercheval
Mari L'Esperance
     "Pantoum of the Blind Cambodian Woman"
     "Finding My Mother"
Katherine Vaz
     "Lisbon Story"
Kara Candito
     "Self-Portrait with an Ice Pick"
     "Carnivale, 1934"
Anne Finger
Shane Book
Ted Gilley
     "Physical Wisdom"
James Crews
     "Paradoxical Undressing"
     "The Bees Have Not Yet Left Us"
Greg Hrbek
Susan Blackwell Ramsey
     "Knitting Lace"
Karen Brown
     "Little Sinners"
Orlando Ricardo Menes
    "Elegy for Great-Uncle Julio, Cane Cutter"
    "Television, a Patient Teacher"
Xhenet Aliu
    "Flipping Property"

Source Acknowledgments
List of Contributors

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