The National Book Foundation Announces Its 5 Under 35 Honorees for 2024

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The National Book Foundation has announced its 5 Under 35 honorees for 2024. This recognizes authors from around the world under the age of 35 who have put out their first work of fiction in the past five years, and whose work “promises to leave a lasting impression on the literary landscape.” The honorees each receive a $1,000 prize, funded by the Amazon Literary Partnership.

Here are this year’s honorees, who will be celebrated at the 5 Under 35 Ceremony on Thursday, May 9, 2024 at the Brooklyn Museum.

Book cover of Sirens & Muses by Antonia Angress

Antonia Angress, Sirens & Muses

Here’s how the National Book Foundation describes Angress’s debut novel: “Set during the rising Occupy Wall Street movement, Antonia Angress’s Sirens & Muses first follows a trio of students as they navigate class, ambition, and queer desire at a prestigious art school. After a dangerous prank, the artists are thrust alongside their former professor into New York City’s ruthless art scene and forced to grapple with what it means to make authentic art amongst capitalism.”

Hangman cover

Maya Binyam, Hangman

“In Hangman by Maya Binyam, an unnamed narrator returns to his homeland in sub-Saharan Africa, his ticket purchased and bags packed for him. After nearly three decades in the United States, he sets off on a dizzying journey to find his dying brother in Binyam’s reflection on immigration, refuge, and returning to an unrecognizable—or unreachable—home.”

Brother Alive cover

Zain Khalid, Brother Alive

Brother Alive chronicles the lives of three unrelated boys—Youssef, Iseul, and Dayo—who are adopted by an imam as infants and raised above a mosque in Staten Island. The boys are inseparable, but don’t know Youssef’s biggest secret: he has an imaginary, shape-shifting friend he calls Brother. Zain Khalid’s novel takes the brothers from childhood to adulthood and from New York City to Saudi Arabia, questioning the very nature of belief.”

cover of We Are a Haunting by Tyriek White

Tyriek White, We Are a Haunting

“In Tyriek White’s We Are a Haunting, readers follow three generations of a Black working-class family in Brooklyn—from the 1980s to present day—that have all been gifted with the ability to communicate with the dead. In the years after his mother’s passing, Colly comes to terms with his inheritance and eventually returns home to find out what it means to build a collective path forward.”

cover of Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang; illustration of a woman's face made out of ocean waves with an orange fish jumping out of the water

Jenny Tinghui Zhang, Four Treasures of the Sky

“Jenny Tinghui Zhang’s epic coming-of-age tale Four Treasures of the Sky follows Daiyu, a young girl who is kidnapped in China and smuggled to the United States in the late 19th century. In the face of rising anti-Chinese sentiment and overwhelming personal tragedy, the narrator must continuously reinvent and reclaim herself to survive.”

Read more about the 5 Under 35 honorees at the National Book Foundation website.

Find more news and stories of interest from the book world in Breaking in Books.