Celebrating the best in Christian Fiction
Monday night was the 15th Annual Christy Awards in Atlanta. I had the honor of being asked to be a judge for the Book of the Year so I was able to attend. It’s always fun to be in a room with authors, publishers, agents and other Christian fiction fans. Some of the authors in attendance included Colleen Coble, Katherine Reay, Brandilyn Collins, Irene Hannon, Travis Thrasher, Lisa Wingate, Karen Witemeyer, Steven James (who I met on Sunday and is a hoot, BTW), Rachel Hauck, Allison Pitman, Melody Carlson, and many more.
I took only two pictures during the course of the evening. I know. Lame. I was sitting in the very back so my view wasn’t great. But, like those who were nominated but didn’t win… it was an honor just to be in the room.
As is my tradition at The Christy Awards, I took a picture of the all important fancy-smancy dessert. This year we had a tasty key lime pie tart that was oh-so yummy.
And the winners are…
There were lots of great books in 2013 so I know the judges had a hard time selecting the best of those presented by the publishers. As a judge for Book of the Year I read each of the books that won their genre and then decide what novel floated to the top. I had a conference call with the other two judges for Book of the Year and we discussed each title. I was so excited that we all easily agreed that Burning Sky by Lori Benton was the best novel. That book is ah-mazing! Here is what I said about Burning Sky which was read at the ceremony:
There are some stories that are so good that you never want them to end. I was about half way through reading Burning Sky when I found myself dreading the end of the book. So I slowed down in order to savor my time with Willa, Neil, Tames-His-Horse, and the other rich characters that Lori Benton gifts us with. Burning Sky is a well-researched and gripping debut that is setting Lori off to quickly become one of the most talented historical novelists in our industry. This was not only one of my favorite reads for the year but the novel that I recommended the most to friends, co-workers, and customers.
As you’ll see below, it quickly became Lori’s night!
So, who were the big winners of the night?
What do you think?
Do you agree with the winners? Would you have chosen a different winner out of the other finalists? Check out the full list of finalists for each genre here.