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Local writers Walter, Wrigley win PNBA awards

Jess Walter and Robert Wrigley are winners in this year’s Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Awards.

Walter, a Spokane native, won for his first collection of short stories, “We Live in Water,” which was published in 2013 by Harper Perennial. Walter was a National Book Award finalist in 2006 for his novel “The Zero.” His latest novel, 2012’s “Beautiful Ruins,” was a New York Times best seller.

Wrigley won for his poetry collection, “Anatomy of Melancholy and Other Poems.” He teaches in the English department at the University of Idaho. He’s won fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and has six Puschart Prizes to his credit. ”Anatomy” is his 10th collection of poetry.

Walter will be given his award during a presentation at Auntie’s Bookstore, 402 W. Main Ave., on Feb. 13. Wrigley will be honored at a ceremony at BookPeople of Moscow, 521 S. Main St., at a date to be announced.

The other four winners are Ruth Ozeki of Whaletown, B.C., for “A Tale for the Time Being,” Langdon Cook of Seattle for “The Mushroom Hunters: On the Rail of an Underground America,” Emily Winfield Martin of Portland for “Dream Animals: A Bedtime Journey,” and Joe Sacco of Portland for “The Great War: July 1, 1916: The First Day of the Battle of the Somme.”

Previous winners include Chuck Palahniuk, Sherman Alexie, Jon Krakauer, Ursula LeGuin and Ivan Doig.

The winners will be contributing essays for the PNBA at The Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association, based in Eugene, is a nonprofit association of independent booksellers.

Coming up at Auntie’s

Dana Johnson of Los Angeles, whose “Break Any Woman Down” won the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, is coming to town to promote her latest novel, “Elsewhere, California,” published in 2012 by Counterpoint Press.

Johnson lives in Los Angeles and she is an associate professor of English at the University of Southern California.

She will be at Auntie’s at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 24. Call the store at (509) 838-0206 for more information.