The 2011 First Novel Prize (then called the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize) was awarded to Bonnie Nadzam for her debut novel Lamb (Other Press). Read about Lamb below and browse 2011’s shortlisted titles.
This annual award was created in 2006 to honor the best first novel of the year. Debut novels published between January 1 and December 31 of the award year are eligible.
- Lamb by Bonnie Nadzam (Other Press)
- Caribou Island by David Vann (HarperCollins)
- Daughters of the Revolution by Carolyn Cooke (Alfred A. Knopf)
- The History of History by Ida Hattemer-Higgins (Alfred A. Knopf)
- Shards by Ismet Prcic (Black Cat, Grove/Atlantic, Inc.)
- The Sweet Relief of Missing Children by Sarah Braunstein (W. W. Norton & Company)
- Touch by Alexi Zentner (W. W. Norton & Company)
By Bonnie Nadzam
Published by Other Press
Lamb traces the journey of David Lamb in the weeks following the disintegration of his marriage and the death of his father. Hoping to regain some faith in his own goodness, he turns his attention to Tommie, an awkward and unpopular eleven-year-old girl. Lamb is convinced that he can help her avoid a destiny of apathy and emptiness, and even comes to believe that his devotion to Tommie is in her best interest. But when Lamb decides to abduct a willing Tommie for a road trip from Chicago to the Rockies, planning to initiate her into the beauty of the mountain wilderness, they are both shaken in ways neither of them expects.