A Student of History

November 17, 2006

Dust Bowl Book Gets Prize

Filed under: New books — John Maass @ 4:20 pm


From the NYT:

The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl” by Timothy Egan was the surprise winner of the top prize for nonfiction.

In the book, Mr. Egan, a former New York Times reporter who remains a frequent contributor to the newspaper, gives an account of the dust storms that descended on the Great Plains during the Depression.  For a review, click here.

Should we be surprised that the award was won by a non-academic?


  1. All five nonfiction National Book Award nominees this year were by journalists, so surprise would be, at best, late.

    The winner of the award in Young People’s Literature was a novel set before and during the Revolutionary War; its author chaired a master’s degree program until recently.

    The winner in the Poetry category is a professor of literature. In fact, the way the poetry business works today, all the nominated poets teach at universities.

    Comment by J. L. Bell — November 22, 2006 @ 1:31 am | Reply

  2. My comment was a facetious one, about us being surprised. It was meant to say that once again, the folks who are connecting with readers are usually not of the academic world (though last year’s winner, Kevin Boyle, is a notbale exception.)

    Comment by John Maass — November 29, 2006 @ 12:10 am | Reply

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