Twelve books by Chicagoland authors have been named as finalists in the Chicago Writers Association’s 2013 Book of the Year Awards.

The finalists, chosen by CWA’s Book Awards Committee, will compete for four awards to be presented at 7 p.m. Jan. 18 at The Book Cellar, 4736-38 Lincoln Ave., in Chicago’s Lincoln Square.

The winners, to be announced on or before Dec. 1, will be selected by three of last year’s winning authors, Patricia Ann McNair (“The Temple of Air”), Renee James (“Coming Out Can Be Murder”) and Richard C. Lindberg (“Whiskey Breakfast”), and special guest judge David Katzman (“A Great Monster”).

“I would like to thank Awards Committee Chair Tori Collins and her dedicated committee members – Amina Gautier, Toni Apicelli, Connie Wilson and Candace George Thompson– for putting in countless hours reading through the many entries we had this year in order to narrow the field to twelve,” CWA President Randy Richardson said. “The bar gets raised each year. The number and quality of entries has grown with each year of the contest, making the selection process that much more difficult.”

The awards, divided into four categories (traditionally and non-traditionally published fiction and non-fiction), were open to books published between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013 authored by CWA members and non-members residing in the Chicagoland area. (Non-traditional is defined as self- and print-on-demand published.) The awards are meant to spotlight books by Chicago area authors.

The finalists are:

Traditional Fiction
-The Registry by Shannon Stoker
-The Fire Beneath – Tales of Gold by Almira Astudillo Gilles
-Good Kings, Bad Kings by Susan Nussbaum

Non-traditional Fiction
-The World Undone by Mary Driver- Thiel
-30 Days to Empathy by The 31 and Jay C. Rehak
-The Bunco Club by Karen DeWitt

Traditional Non-Fiction
-Chicago Sketches by Richard Reeder/Illustrator Leonid Osseny
-We Hope You Like This Song by Bree Housley
-Records Truly Is My Middle Name by John Records Landecker/Producer Rick Kaempfer

Non-traditional Non-Fiction
-Any Road Will Take You There: A Journey of Fathers and Sons by David W. Berner
-Still Having Fun by Candace George Thompson
-Heck on Heels: Still Balancing on Shoes, Love & Chocolate by Mary T. Wagner

The winners will all be invited to read from their books at the free awards ceremony.

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