Two Washington Authors Tackle Labor History

Washington State is home to an amazing array of authors. You can spend an entire year reading our writers of fiction, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, poetry, children’s literature, nonfiction and more. Check out the Washington State Book Awards for a glimpse of the range of writers that live, work, or have ties to our region.

Shipyard workers walk off the job in a show of solidarity during the 1919 Seattle General Strike

So, with this rich literary landscape, it still surprises when two Washington authors decide to tackle a similar theme in their recent work. Both Karl Marlantes and Jess Walter have released novels that touch on the IWW aka Wobblies and labor history in our state. What goes around comes around, and the issues of social justice that so many fought for 100 years ago persist and take on new resonance and dimension as more voices and perspectives emerge or are re-discovered. Both Marlantes’ Deep River and Walters’ The Cold Millions (currently a Peak Pick!) dramatize the men and women engaged in the labor movement and the opposition they faced in fighting for worker’s rights.

It wasn’t all strikes. In July 1919, Seattle IWW holds a picnic to raise legal defense funds for its imprisoned leaders.

The IWW started in Chicago in 1905 and “it was the only American union to welcome all workers, including women, immigrants, African Americans and Asians, into the same organization.” The solidarity and strikes the IWW inspired caused quite the commotion and controversy as wealthy capitalists, politicians, and police tried to prevent worker’s rights from advancing. This history forms the backbone of Deep River and The Cold Millions. Continue reading “Two Washington Authors Tackle Labor History”

2019 Washington State Book Awards finalists!

Congratulations to the finalists for the 2019 Washington State book Awards!  The awards, a program of the Washington Center for the Book, honor outstanding books published by Washington authors in 2018.

Finalists in all eight categories will be honored and winners announced at a ceremony and reception on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019, 7 to 9 p.m. at the Central Library. The event is free and open to all.

Here are the finalists! Continue reading “2019 Washington State Book Awards finalists!”

Announcing Washington State Book Award finalists for 2018!

Congratulations to the finalists in the
2018 Washington State Book Awards

Place a hold on these winning Washington titles here!

This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel, of Seattle (Flatiron Books)
The Cold Eye by Laura Anne Gilman, of Seattle (Simon & Schuster)
The Other Alcott by Elise Hooper, of Seattle (HarperCollins)
Solar Reboot by Matthew D. Hunt, of Clearview (Matthew D. Hunt)
George and Lizzie by Nancy Pearl, of Seattle (Touchstone)
Duplicity by Ingrid Thoft, of Seattle (Putnam)

Upstream: Searching for Wild Salmon, from River to Table by Langdon Cook, of Seattle (Ballantine Books)
Mozart’s Starling by Lyanda Lynn Haupt, of Seattle (Little, Brown & Company)
Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil to Life by David R. Montgomery, of Seattle (W.W. Norton)
Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean by Jonathan White, of Orcas Island (Trinity University Press) Waterway: The Story of Seattle’s Locks and Ship Canal by David B. Williams and Jennifer Ott, of Seattle, and the Staff of HistoryLink (HistoryLink and Documentary Media)
Ghosts of Seattle Past, various authors, curated and edited by Jaimee Garbacik, formerly of Seattle (Chin Music Press) Continue reading “Announcing Washington State Book Award finalists for 2018!”

Read Local: 2017 Washington Book Award winners

Here’s to the finalists and winners of the 2017 Washington State Book Awards, celebrating books and their creators that speak to the creative talent and literary legacy of our state. More than 200 books were considered for this year’s awards.

Taking home the top awards on October 14, 2017, in eight categories were:

Continue reading “Read Local: 2017 Washington Book Award winners”

Washington State Book Awards finalists for 2017!

Take a look at this lineup of stellar authors from Washington state! These 32 books, published in 2016, are finalists in the 2017 Washington State Book Awards. Find the full list later in this blog post, or if you’re itching to place holds right away, check out the WSBA 2017 finalists in adult categories and finalists in the four books for youth categories in our catalog.

Winners will be announced at the awards celebration on Saturday, Oct. 14, at 7 p.m. at the Central Library downtown. Lots of awards ceremonies are pricey affairs, but ours is free and open to everyone. There’s even a post-awards reception (also free and open to all!), book sales, and book signing.

And here is the list of finalists, otherwise known as books you want to read and authors you want to know: Continue reading “Washington State Book Awards finalists for 2017!”