Morris Finalists and Prediction!

Each year I try to read as many of the Morris Finalists as I can and make a prediction about the winner. So here we go!

This lineup is incredible, not only because of the impressive range of topics being explored, but also because of the fact that the authors themselves are so diverse and each comes from such a unique background. I've read four of these and, unlike some other years, I am having a heck of a time making any predictions.

I know it would be easiest to say THUG will win, simply because of the impressive amount of accolades and the sheer number of weeks on the NYT Bestseller list. But as with so many awards that include much-hyped books, the accolades can sometimes (even subconsciously) act as a deterrent in awards processes. But I love the book and would love to see it get further rewarded.

At the same time, I would love to see Saints and Misfits get some love since it's part of the first year of publications coming out of Salaam Reads, and the book itself is phenomenally well written. The lack of Muslim-identified authors being recognized on any awards lists is also dismal and I would love to see more love thrown Ali's way.

Dear Martin is also a powerful book, even though it is similar in some ways to THUG. The writing is very different, as is the overall vibe of the narrative. It is much more swift in pacing and in length, but the impact is still very much there.

And while I know there has been a lot of love shown for Starfish, and I still really liked it, I wasn't as pulled into the story. It was, however, brutally honest and very well written with strongly built characters. I can't say for sure if this will be a front-runner with the others, but I would not personally put it right at the top.

I have not read Devils Within and so cannot really evaluate it within my prediction. So, what do I think is going to win? Even with the possible curse of previous fame and the fact that it has been out long enough for people to find more issues with, I predict that The Hate U Give will be the winner of this year's Morris Award.


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