UA Law School announces finalists for 2020 Harper Lee Prize

UA Law School announces finalists for 2020 Harper Lee Prize
Harper Lee, a former student at the University of Alabama School of Law, wrote "To Kill a Mockingbird," probably the best-known book by an Alabama native. (file)

The University of Alabama School of Law named the finalists for the 2020 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

The three books chosen to compete for the prize are “The Satapur Moonstone” by Sujata Massey, “The Hallows” by Victor Methos and “An Equal Justice” by Chad Zunker.

“We are pleased to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the prize with the selection of these finalists,” said Candice Robbins, assistant dean for advancement at the law school. “The books represent a diverse offering in legal fiction, from a historical mystery series written by Massey to a sharp legal thriller by Methos and, finally, a fast-paced novel that explores the crisis of homelessness in the United States by Zunker.”

The prize, previously authorized by Lee, who died in 2016, is given annually to a book-length work of fiction that best illuminates the role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change.

Ten years ago, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the publication of “To Kill a Mockingbird” and to honor the former UA law student and author, the law school created the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

There were 21 entries for the prize this year, and a team of reviewers chose three books for the selection committee’s consideration.

The 2020 prize will be awarded later this year. The winner will be announced prior to the ceremony and will receive a copy of “To Kill a Mockingbird” signed by Lee.

A distinguished panel of writers and scholars will select the 2020 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction. The panel consists of:

  • A’Lelia Bundles, author and journalist.
  • Dr. James A. Crank, UA associate professor of English specializing in American literature and culture.
  • Jesse Holland, journalist, author and Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Kluge Center in the Library of Congress.
  • David Mao, associate vice president and chief operating officer for Georgetown University Law Center.
  • C.E. Tobisman, attorney and winner of the 2018 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

This story originally appeared on the University of Alabama’s website.

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