Patti Smith Snags National Book Award

Memoir about relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe wins nonfiction prize
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 18, 2010 6:43 AM CST
Patti Smith, winner of the National Book Award for Nonfiction for her book "Just Kids" smiles as she speaks at the National Book Awards Wednesday Nov. 17, 2010 in New York.   (AP Photo/Tina Fineberg)
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(Newser) – Patti Smith was the darling of last night's National Book Award ceremony, where she won the nonfiction prize for her memoir about her relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe, Just Kids. "I dreamed of having a book of my own, of writing one that I could put on a shelf," she said. "Please, no matter how we advance technologically, please don’t abandon the book." More winners—who walked away with $10,000 and a bronze statue—from the 61st annual awards, via the New York Times:

  • Fiction: Jaimy Gordon's Lord of Misrule, a novel about West Virginia horse racing, was the surprise winner.

  • Young people's literature: Kathryn Erskine's Mockingbird, the story of an 11-year-old girl with Asperger syndrome.
  • Poetry: Terrance Hayes' Lighthead was a unanimous pick.
  • Tom Wolfe: The author received the 2010 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.
  • Joan Ganz Cooney: The public television producer, who founded the Children’s Television Workshop in 1968, received the 2010 Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community.
Need holiday reading ideas? Check out the rest of the fiction finalists here.

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