Colson Whitehead novel wins $50,000 Kirkus Prize

Colson Whitehead’s novel “The Nickel Boys” and Saeed Jones’ memoir “How We Fight for Our Lives” are among the winners of the Kirkus Prize, a $50,000 honor.

On Thursday, Whitehead won in the fiction category for his narrative of a brutal boys academy in Florida. Jones’ coming-of-age book was cited for nonfiction and the winner for young people’s books was “New Kid,” author-illustrator Jerry Craft’s story of a black kid attending a predominantly white private school.

The prizes were presented by the trade publication Kirkus Reviews and were judged by panels of authors, critics, educators and booksellers. The winners were chosen from more than 1,200 releases receiving a starred review from Kirkus during the past year.

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