American journo's book on Mumbai wins her US Prize

A depiction of Mumbai's slumdwellers and growing corruption in India has won American author and Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Katherine Boo a prestigious award in American literature.

Boo, the wife of New Delhi-born Sunil Khilnani, who authored the critically acclaimed book
'The Idea of India', was among the winners of this year's National Book Award.
She was honoured for her debut work 'Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity', a tale of despair and hope in India.

Her very first work on India is a non-fiction account that gives a detailed picture of Annawadi slum near Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport and follows the interconnected lives of several residents, including a young trash picker, a female "slumlord," and a college student.

In 2000, her series for the Washington Post about homes for mentally retarded people won her the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.

48-year-old Boo is currently on staff with The New Yorker.

The National Book Awards also honoured longtime author Louise Erdrich (58) for her book The Round House, the second of a planned trilogy, about an Ojibwe boy and his quest to avenge his mother's rape.

Among others who were awarded for their work are William Alexander, Goblin Secrets Young Peoples Literature and for David Ferry, Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations.

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