PEN/Hemingway Award at the JFK

Every Spring, the JFK Library hosts a celebration to honor the winner of and finalists for the PEN/Hemingway award.

To read about past PEN/Hemingway Awards and other Hemingway related forums, please visit our Hemingway Events page.

PEN/Hemingway Award Recipients

  • 2023 Oscar HokeahCalling for a Blanket Dance
    Finalists: Lisa Hsiao Chen (Activities of Daily Living), Ramona Emerson (Shutter),
    Alyssa Songsiridej (Little Rabbit), Ryan Lee Wong (Which Side Are You On)
  • 2022 Torrey PetersDetransition, Baby: A Novel
    Finalists: Avni Doshi (Burnt Sugar), Carolyn Ferrell (Dear Miss Metropolitan: A Novel),
    Honorée Fanonne Jeffers (The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois: A Novel), Kirstin Valdez Quade (The Five Wounds: A Novel)
  • 2021 Kawai Strong WashburnSharks in the Time of Saviors
    Finalists: Maisy Card (These Ghosts are Family), Raven Leilani (Luster),
    Douglas Stewart (Shuggie Bain), C Pam Zhang (How Much of These Hills Is Gold)
  • 2020 Ruchika TomarA Prayer for Travelers
    Finalists: Madeline ffitch (Stay and Fight), Regina Porter (The Travelers)
    Honorable Mentions: Jamil Jan Kochai (99 Nights in Logar), Tomas Moniz (Big Familia)
  • 2019 Tommy OrangeThere There
    Finalists: Akwaeke Emezi (Freshwater), Ling Ma (Severance)
    Honorable Mentions: Meghan Kenny (The Driest Season), Nico Walker (Cherry)
  • 2018 Weike WangChemistry
    Finalists: Lisa Ko (The Leavers), Adelia Saunders (Indelible)
    Honorable Mentions: Ian Bassingthwaighte (Live from Cairo), Curtis Dawkins (The Graybar Hotel)
  • 2017 Yaa GyasiHomegoing
    Finalists: Bill Beverly (Dodgers), Leopoldine Core (When Watched)
    Honorable Mentions: Callan Wink (Dog Run Moon), Melissa Yancy (Dog Years)
  • 2016 Ottessa MoshfeghEileen
    Finalists: S.M. Hulse (Black River), Margaret Malone (People Like You)
    Honorable Mentions: Karim Dimechkie (Lifted by the Great Nothing), Chigozie Obioma (The Fisherman)
  • 2015 Arna Bontemps HemenwayElegy on Kinderklavier
    Finalists: Kim Fu (For Today I Am A Boy), Atticus Lish (Preparation for the Next Life)
    Honorable Mentions: Mark Chiusano (Marine Park), and Diane Cook (Man V. Nature)
  • 2014 Noviolet BulawayoWe Need New Names
    Finalists: Anthony Wallace (The Old Priest), Mitchell Jackson (Residue Years)
    Honorable Mentions: Jasmine Beach-Ferrara (Damn Love), Ethan Rutherford (The Peripatetic Coffin & Other Stories), Kristopher Jansman (The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards)
  • 2013 Kevin PowersThe Yellow Birds
    Finalists: Jennifer duBois (A Partial History of Lost Causes), Vaddey Ratner (In the Shadow of the Banyan
    Honorable Mentions: Catherine Chung (Forgotten Country), Peter M. Wheelwright (As It Is On Earth)
  • 2012 Teju ColeOpen City 
    Finalists: Amy Waldman (The Submission), Stephanie Powell Watts (We Are Taking Only What We Need
    Honorable mentions: Marjorie Hudson (Accidental Birds of the Carolinas), Chad Harbach (The Art of Fielding)
  • 2011 Brando SkyhorseThe Madonnas of Echo Park
    Finalists: Patricia Engel (Vida), Suzanne Rivecca (Death is Not an Option
    Honorable mentions: Danielle Evans (Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self ) and Helen Simonson (Major Pettigrew's Last Stand )
  • 2010 Brigid PasulkaA Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True
    Finalists: C. E. Morgan (All the Living), Abraham Verghese (Cutting for Stone), Mary Beth Keane (The Walking People) and Lydia Peelle (Reasons for and Advantages of Breathing)
  • 2009 Michael DahlieA Gentleman's Guide to Graceful Living
    Finalists: Ed Park (Personal Days), Sana Krasikov (One More Year), Doug Dorst (Alive in the Necropolis) and Matthew Quick (The Silver Linings Playbook)
  • 2008 Joshua Ferris, Then We Came to the End
    Finalists: Ravi Howard (Like Tress Walking), Rebecca Curtis (Twenty Grand), Margot Singer (The Pale of Settlement) and Gary Schanbacher (Migration Patterns)
  • 2007 Ben Fountain, Brief Enounters with Che Guevara
    Finalists: Rebecca Johns (Icebergs), Yvette Christianse (Unconfessed), Marisha Pessl (The Special Topics in Calamity Physics) and Janna Levin (A Madman Dreams of Turning Machines)
  • 2006 Yiyun LiA Thousand Years of Good Prayers
    Finalists: Daniel Alarcon (War by Candlelight), Douglas Trevor (The Thin Year in the Fabric of Space), Jeff Row (The Train to Lo Wu) and Karen Olsson (Waterloo)
  • 2005 Chris AbaniGraceland
    Finalists: Laurie Lynn Drummond (Anything You Say Can and Will be Used Against You), Samina Ali (Madras on Rainy Days), Jerome Richard (The Kiss of the Prison Dancer) and Hannah Tinti (Animal Crackers)
  • 2004 Jennifer HaighMrs. Kimble
    Finalists: Murad Kalam (Night Journey), Z. Z. Packer (Drinking Coffee Elsewhere), Suki Kim (The Interpreters) and Ellen Ullman (The Bug)
  • 2003 Gabriel BrownsteinThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Apt. 3W 
    Finalists: Chriusite Hodgen (A Jeweler's Eye for Flaw), Gabe Hudson (Dear Mr. President), Jonathan Tel (Arafat's Elephant) and Julia Whitty (A Tortoise for the Queen of Tonga)
  • 2002 Justin CroninMary and O'Neil 
    Finalists: Peter Orner (Esther Stories), Man il Suri (The Death of Vishnu), Carolyn Cooke (The Bostons) and Micheline Aharonian Marcom (Three Apples Fell From Heaven)
  • 2001 Akhhil Sharma, An Obedient Father 
    Finalists: Mohsin Hamid (Moth Smoke), Tom Paine (Scar Vegas and other Stories), Myla Goldberg (Bee Season) and Elissa Schappel (Use Me)
  • 2000 Jhumpa LahiriInterpreter of Maladies
  • 1999 Rosina LippiHomestead
    Finalists: Michael Byers (The Coast of Good Intentions), C.S. Godshalk (Kalimantaan), Lan Samantha Change (Hunger) and Michael Knight (Dogfight & Other Stories)
  • 1998 Charlotte BaconA Private State
  • 1997 Ha JinOceans of Words
  • 1996 Chang-Rae LeeNative Speaker
  • 1995 Susan PowerThe Grass Dancer
  • 1994 Dagoberto GilbThe Magic of Blood
  • 1993 Edward P. JonesLost in the City
  • 1992 Louis BegleyWartime Lies
  • 1991 Bernard CooperMaps to Anywhere
  • 1990 Mark RichardThe Ice at the Bottom of the World
  • 1989 Jane HamiltonThe Book of Ruth
  • 1988 Lawrence Thornton, Imagining Argentina
  • 1987 Mary Ward Brown, Tongues of Flame
  • 1986 Alan V. Hewar, Lady's Time
  • 1985 Josephine Humphreys, Dream of Sleep
  • 1984 Joan ChaseDuring the Reign of the Queen of Sheba
  • 1983 Bobbie Ann MasonShiloh and Other Stories
  • 1982 Marilynne RobinsonHousekeeping
  • 1981 Joan SilberHousehold Words
  • 1980 Alan Saperstein, Mom Kills Kids and Self
  • 1979 Reuben BercovitchHasen
  • 1978 Darcy O'BrienA Way of Life, Like Any Other
  • 1977 Renata Adler, Speedboat
  • 1976 Loyd Little, Parthian Shot