The 2014 NBCC Fiction Prize went to Marilynne Robinson for her novel Lila. Lila is the third installment of Robinson’s acclaimed Gilead series. The first novel in the series, Gilead, also won the NBCC prize along with the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. This series of novels is on my personal TBR list as I have heard many good things about Robinson’s writing and her novels.
Here is the blurb from GoodReads:
Lila, homeless and alone after years of roaming the countryside, steps inside a small-town Iowa church—the only available shelter from the rain—and ignites a romance and a debate that will reshape her life. She becomes the wife of a minister, John Ames, and begins a new existence while trying to make sense of the days of suffering that preceded her newfound security. Neglected as a toddler, Lila was rescued by Doll, a canny young drifter, and brought up by her in a hardscrabble childhood. Together they crafted a life on the run, living hand-to-mouth with nothing but their sisterly bond and a ragged blade to protect them. But despite bouts of petty violence and moments of desperation, their shared life is laced with moments of joy and love. When Lila arrives in Gilead, she struggles to harmonize the life of her makeshift family and their days of hardship with the gentle Christian worldview of her husband that paradoxically judges those she loves.
There were many great books shortlisted for the prize so I am certain this will be a wonderful read. Judges of the NBCC prize this year described the winner:
“No one writes so simply yet profoundly of our yearnings and struggles, our troubling doubts and grateful affirmations of the good when we encounter it at last.”
You can read more in the NBCC press release. I’d love to hear what you thought of any of the Gilead books.