Prose Bowl 2019: The Final Round

by Craig B.

Welcome to the final round of Prose Bowl 2019!

Here we are in the final round of voting! Competition has been fierce. These contenders have fought their way to the top of the bracket. Three challengers remain from a fighting field of sixty. Only one finalist can win. It’s like Thunderdome for book worms! Three books enter, one book leaves. Which title has the mettle to be this year’s Prose Bowl champion? 

Of Blood and Bone

In the first bracket, we had a head-to-head bout between speculative fiction and graphic novels. Of Blood and Bone beat out Jen Wang’s The Prince and the Dressmaker, so graphic novels will have to wait another year before they prove they can swing with the heavyweights. In the meantime, Nora Robert’s second installment of the Chronicles of the One series secures an opportunity to vie for the crown. The third installment is slated to be released in November. Will her novel win this year’s crown? Will we see her again in 2020?


Kingdom of the Blind

They say that crime never pays. Tell that to Louise Penny’s Kingdom of the Blind. It whooped Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water in the second bracket, which pitted crime fiction vs. romance. Before you lament the death of romance, however, remember that love pays too; del Toro’s movie, which was conceived and written at the same time as the novel, managed to grab $195 million at the box office. Oh, it also won four Oscars, including Best Picture. So love does triumph over all, just not in the Prose Bowl.



In the third bracket, fiction and nonfiction squared up for a rumpus. I have to admit, I thought fiction was going to take this one…primarily because…well, it’s fiction. It’s the Muhammad Ali of genres. Yet, despite the valiant efforts of Kristin Hannah’s The Great Alone, it lost to Michelle Obama’s fleet-footed Becoming. Being an ardent reader of nonfiction, I was pleasantly surprised by this unexpected outcome. But does nonfiction have the moxie to take it all?



And those are our three finalists! Who will be crowned 2019’s Prose Bowl champion? Vote for your favorite!

Voting will be open until noon next Thursday, March 28.

On March 29, the winner will be announced.

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