Texas wins four categories

Texas winners include James Wade, Samantha Mabry, Mely Martínez, and Christina Soontornvat.


Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association (MPIBA) announced the thirty-first annual Reading the West Book Awards Winners in nine categories on Tuesday, May 25. For the first time ever, the awards were presented live at a special virtual event, with esteemed host Kali Fajardo-Anstine, winner of the 30th Annual Award for Fiction for her book Sabrina & Corinna: Stories. The Awards Presentation show can be viewed here.


Congratulations to these fantastic books and authors:



Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse


Debut Fiction

All Things Left Wild by James Wade



When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through edited by Joy Harjo


Illustrated Nonfiction

Our Wild Tails: The Adventures of Henry and Baloo by Cynthia Bennett


Narrative Nonfiction

The Reign of Wolf 21 by Rick McIntyre


Eating the West (Culinary/Cookbook)

The Mexican Home Kitchen by Mely Martínez


Picture Book

Simon at the Art Museum by Christina Soontornvat, illustrated by Christine Davenier


Young Reader

The Elephant’s Girl by Celesta Rimington


Young Adult

Tigers, Not Daughters by Samantha Mabry


Advocacy Award

My Autobiography of Carson McCullers by Jenn Shapland


The Reading the West Book Awards are sponsored and promoted by independent booksellers across many western and mid-western states. The awards honor the best fiction, non-fiction, and illustrated books for adults and children set in one of the member states, created by an author or artist living or working in the region, or whose subject relates to the region. The awards, given to books published in the previous calendar year, celebrate the spirit of the west and the rich variety of writing in and about this region, and reflect the extraordinary diversity of the reading public.


Publishers and authors submit books for consideration for the Reading the West Book Awards program. Bookseller reading committees then read and evaluate all nominated titles to curate shortlists in each category. This year, almost six thousand bookseller and public votes were cast to select the winners from the shortlisted titles.


See more about the awards, including previous winners at readingthewest.com.