Snowden Stories, Coming-of-Age Novel Win Pulitzers
'The Goldfinch' by Donna Tartt wins prize for best fiction
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 14, 2014 3:46 PM CDT
This Oct. 7, 2002 file photo shows author Donna Tartt in New York. Tartt’s "The Goldfinch" won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction on Monday, April 14, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gino Domenico, File)
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(Newser) – A coming-of-age novel and groundbreaking reports on NSA surveillance took top billing today as the Pulitzer Board at Columbia University handed out its coveted prizes. Among the winners:

  • Fiction: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, a "beautifully written" novel about a grieving orphan in modern-day Manhattan, the Boston Globe reports. The two finalists are The Son by Philipp Meyer and The Woman Who Lost Her Soul by Bob Shacochis.

  • "Public Service" reporting: The Guardian and Washington Post won for stories based on Edward Snowden's leaked NSA documents, which inspired a worldwide debate, a formal White House review, and President Obama's promise to curb the NSA's powers, the New York Times reports. The Pulitzer Board called the reports "authoritative and insightful" and said they helped people fit the leaks "into the larger framework of national security."
  • Other reporting: The Boston Globe won "breaking news" for its series on the Boston Marathon bombing; Chris Hamby of The Center for Public Integrity, Washington, DC, won "investigative reporting" for stories on doctors and lawyers who made sure coal miners with black lung disease were denied benefits; Eli Saslow at the Post won "explanatory reporting" for reports on food stamps in post-recession America.
  • Drama: The Flick by Annie Baker, a play about three people working in a Massachusetts art-house cinema.
  • History: The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832 by Alan Taylor, about runaway slaves who sided with the British as possible liberators.
  • Biography or autobiography: Margaret Fuller: A New American Life by Megan Marshall, about the 19th-century writer who advocated for women's rights and lost her life in a shipwreck.
  • General Non-fiction: Toms River: A Story of Science and Salvation by Dan Fagin, which looks at pollution-related cancers in a New Jersey seashore town.
For more, see the Globe's full list of winners.