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Coming-of-age novel receives 2012 Cabell First Novelist Award

August 2, 2012

Justin Torres has won the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, which honors an outstanding debut novel published during a calendar year. His winning book, "We the Animals," is a powerful coming-of-age novel about three brothers growing up amidst the chaotic and destructive love of their working-class parents.  

Torres will receive the award at the VCU Cabell First Novelist Festival at Virginia Commonwealth University on Nov. 8. He was one of three finalists for the prize, now in its eleventh year. The other finalists were Alexi Zentner for "Touch" and Peter Mountford for "A Young Man's Guide to Late Capitalism."

Published in August 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, "We the Animals" is narrated by the youngest sibling in a voice that is both compelling and urgent and prose that is brutally honest and beautifully poetic. Composed in short, disjointed chapters, the novel swiftly moves through six years in the tumultuous childhood of the three brothers as they claw their way toward adulthood. More

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