Announcing the 2023 Chicago Review of Books Awards Shortlist – Chicago Review of Books


The Chicago Review of Books is proud to announce the shortlist for the 2023 Chicago Review of Books (CHIRBy) Awards!

Now in its eighth year, the CHIRBy Awards honor the best fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and short essays and stories that feature Chicago and our strong literary community. Eligible titles include works published between September 1, 2022 and September 1, 2023 that were either written by authors living in the Chicagoland area or titles in which Chicago plays a prominent role.

The winners in all four categories will be announced at the 8th annual CHIRBy Awards! Save the date for Thursday, December 7 as we come together with StoryStudio Chicago and the brightest stars in publishing today at Volumes Bookcafe to celebrate the past year in writing. More information coming soon!


Island City
By Laura Adamczyk
FSG Originals

Maddalena and the Dark
By Julia Fine
Flatiron Books

Biography of X
By Catherine Lacey
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Bliss Montage: Stories
By Ling Ma
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Extended Stay
By Juan Martinez
University of Arizona Press

Book of Extraordinary Tragedies
By Joe Meno
Akashic Books

Good Night, Irene
By Luis Alberto Urrea
Little Brown and Company


King: A Life
By Jonathan Eig
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Who Is the City For?: Architecture, Equity, and the Public Realm in Chicago
By Blair Kamin
With Photographs by Lee Bey
University of Chicago Press

Choosing Family: A Memoir of Queer Motherhood and Black Resistance
By Francesca Royster
Abrams Press

BFF: A Memoir of Friendship Lost and Found
By Christie Tate
Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster

The Wandering Womb: Essays in Search of Home
By S.L. Wisenberg
University of Massachusetts Press


I Done Clicked My Heels Three Times
By Taylor Byas
Soft Skull

Dialect of Distant Harbors
By Dipika Mukherjee
CavanKerry Press

Where Are the Snows
By Kathleen Rooney
Texas Review Press

Trace Evidence
By Charif Shanahan
Tin House Books

Super Sad Black Girl
By Diamond Sharp
Haymarket Books

See Also

2023 Essay/Short Story Shortlist

“Black cowboy culture in Chicago lives on”
By Bianca Cseke & Meha Ahmad

“Question Mark, Ohio”
By Joe Meno and Dan Sinker
An immersive shortform narrative series run on Instagram & online

“Why you talking to a bum?”
By Katie Prout
Chicago Reader

“After the Buses: Meet the Migrants at the Center of Texas’ Manufactured Crisis”
By Madison Savedra
Block Club Chicago & Borderless Magazine

“Life and Death in Chicago’s Most Dangerous Bike Lane”
By Casey Toner and Mina Bloom
Block Club Chicago & Illinois Answers Project



Michael Welch, Editor-In-Chief


Chicago Review of Books Staff


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