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Celebrating stories and writers at the Minnesota Book Awards

Minnesota Book Awards logo
Bobrowsky, Tammy L
Contributed media
The 2023 Minnesota Book Awards will be awarded May 2nd.

The 2023 Minnesota Book Awards ceremony will be live and online May 2 in St. Paul.

In Minnesota, we are as rich in the literary tradition as we are in forests and prairies and lakes. And we celebrate this each year spring with the Minnesota Book Awards.

Winners and nominees of the past have included several authors you’ve heard right here on KAXE/KBXE, such as:

You can find these interviews and more at

The Minnesota Book Awards is an exciting event, and not just because of the drama and fanfare and anticipation of the winners. Ultimately, it is a celebration of books and stories.

Alayne Hopkins, director of programs and services for the Friends of the St. Paul Public Library, the organization that oversees the awards, joined What We're Reading on KAXE/KBXE to discuss this year's event. It's been 35 years since the awards ceremony began.

Anyone who is a Minnesota resident and who has published a book in the past year is eligible for nomination in one of nine categories: children's literature, middle-grade literature, young-adult literature, memoir and creative nonfiction, general nonfiction, Minnesota nonfiction, poetry, novel & short story, and genre fiction.

For 2023, 214 titles were nominated. Nominated titles then go through two rounds of judging. Hopkins noted the judges and facilitators are volunteers with some experience in the book world, and are an important part of the process. Calls for these volunteers go out each year.

The 2023 Minnesota Book Awards will be May 2 at the Ordway Center for Performing Arts in St. Paul. Tickets are still available and there will be a livestream option as well. Performer Jearlyn Steele will emcee the ceremony and you can find out more from Friends of the St. Paul Public Library.

Looking for a good book recommendation? Want to recommend a book you've just read? Check out our What We're Reading page on Facebook, or text us at 218-326-1234.

What We're Reading is made possible in part by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and the citizens of Minnesota.

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Tammy works at Bemidji State University's library, and she hosts "What We're Reading," a show about books and authors.