Fourth of July Creek, the debut novel by Portlander and former Montanan Smith Henderson, has been named the winner of the 2014 Montana Book Award. Three honor books were also named, and there are no obscurities here. The four-book list is a NW All-Star roster for 2014.
Fourth of July Creek was an Indie Next Pick and made the Pacific Northwest Independent Bestseller List this fall. Astoria is currently on the list and one of the biggest critical and sales hits of the past year. The Ploughmen was a Best of the NW feature in the Holiday Books campaign featured by dozens of NW indies over the holidays, was an NPR Great Reads pick, and its author, Kim Zupan, was a NW Voices guest essayist on NWBL. Blood Will Out by Walter Kirn was Shortlisted as a finalist for a Pacific Northwest Book Award.
And—as if this list needed anything extra—take a peek at the sidebar bonus feature in the Missoulian‘s coverage of the awards for an odds-on favorite to make the 2015 list, another mind-blowing debut, Black River by University of Montana grad S.M. Hulse. Honestly, any of these five. Just start somewhere.
The Montana Book Award, determined by readers representing the state library system, was established in 2001 by the Friends of the Missoula Public Library to celebrate books by Montana authors or set in Montana.