Tournament of Books


The Morning News Tournament of Books is an annual book event pitting 16 of the best novels from the previous year in a March Madness-style battle royale.

Each weekday in March, a judge evaluates two books and chooses one to move ahead. On the final match day, all the judges weigh in on the remaining two books, selecting one to receive the award, The Rooster (named in honor of David Sedaris’s brother). Each day, there’s also commentary from play-by-play officials, as well as the audience. Just before the Championship match, there is a special “Zombie Round” where the would-be finalists must battle the readers’ two favorite books that were ejected earlier in the competition.

2019 – My Sister, the Serial Killer, Oyinkan Braithwaite
2018Fever Dream, Samanta Schweblin
2017 – The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead
2016 – The Sellout, Paul Beatty
2015 – Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel
2014 – The Good Lord Bird, James McBride
2013 – The Orphan Master’s Son, Adam Johnson
2012 – The Sisters Brothers, Patrick deWitt
2011 – A Visit From the Goon Squad, Jennifer Egan
2010Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel
2009 – A Mercy, Toni Morrison
2008 – The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Junot Diaz
2007 – The Road, Cormac McCarthy
2006The Accidental, Ali Smith
2005 – Cloud Atlas, David Mitchell