Paco's Story

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Paco's Story is 1987 novel by Larry Heinemann. The novel is his second and it won the 1987 U.S. National Book Award for Fiction[1] in a major surprise that has remained controversial.[2][3][4][5] In particular, the New York Times was surprised by the win, soliciting commentary from other critical reviewers, like the LA Times.[6]


  1. ^ "National Book Awards – 1987". National Book Foundation. Retrieved 2012-03-26. (With essays by Patricia Smith and Harold Augenbraum from the Awards 60-year anniversary blog.)
  2. ^ "An Upset at the Book Awards", Edwin McDowell, The New York Times, November 10, 1987, page C13. • "In a stunning literary upset ..."
  3. ^ "Book Awards Are Pondered", Edwin McDowell, The New York Times, November 12, 1987, page C27. • "Although the literary and publishing communities have had two days to recover ... they continue to express astonishment that the novel by Larry Heinemann beat the widely celebrated and praised novels by Toni Morrison and Philip Roth. "'Everybody and their brother thought Toni Morrison was going to win it,' said Gerald Howard, executive editor of Penguin, which published the paperback edition of Paco's Story just this week."
  4. ^ "Did 'Paco's Story' Deserve Its Award?", Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times, November 16, 1987, page C15. • "What happened? ... Members of the literary community had widely regarded Toni Morrison's novel Beloved as a virtual shoo-in for the prize (with The Counterlife by Philip Roth also a strong contender) and the announcement last Monday ... was greeted with expressions of surprise and astonishment."
  5. ^ Menand, Louis. "All That Glitters: Literature’s global economy" (review of The Economy of Prestige by James English), The New Yorker, December 26, 2005/January 2, 2006. Retrieved 2006-12-11.
  6. ^ MILES, JACK (1987-11-22). "In Defense of 'Paco's Story'". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2016-04-12.