Books Honored by the National Book Foundation

National Book Award Medals

The mission of the National Book Foundation is to celebrate the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to enhance the cultural value of great writing in America. National Book Awards are given five categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Translated Literature, and Young People’s Literature.

The first African-American writer to win a National Book Award was Ralph Ellison for Invisible Man.

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One Book Honored by the National Book Foundation in 1964

Finalist - Nonfiction

The Fire Next Time
by James Baldwin

Publication Date:
List Price: $13.95
Format: Paperback, 128 pages
Classification: Nonfiction
ISBN13: 9780679744726
Imprint: Vintage Books
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Parent Company: Bertelsmann
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Read a Description of The Fire Next Time


Book Description: 

A national bestseller when it first appeared in 1963, The Fire Next Time galvanized the nation and gave passionate voice to the emerging civil rights movement. At once a powerful evocation of James Baldwin’s early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice, the book is an intensely personal and provocative document. It consists of two “letters,” written on the occasion of the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation, that exhort Americans, both black and white, to attack the terrible legacy of racism. Described by The New York Times Book Review as

“sermon, ultimatum, confession, deposition, testament, and chronicle…all presented in searing, brilliant prose,”

The Fire Next Time stands as a classic of our literature.