From the best-selling, award-winning author of The Buddha in the Attic and When the Emperor Was Divine comes a novel about a group of obsessed recreational swimmers and what happens to them when a crack appears at the bottom of their local pool—a tour de force of economy, precision, and emotional power. LEARN MORE
National Best Seller
Winner: 2023 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction
The Swimmers is the winner of the 2023 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. The winner was announced at the Reference and User Services Association’s Book and Media Awards during ALA LibLearnX on Sunday, January 29.
Praise for The Swimmers
Novelist Julie Otsuka draws on her own family history in The Swimmers
When a ‘Diverse’ Book Ban Goes Awry
A Wisconsin school board rejects an award-winning novel for being too one-sided about Japanese American internment during WWII.
Republicans are banning books... their leaders have apologized for
Los Angeles Times
[Emperor] has become a captive — of efforts by the Republican Party to literally and figuratively whitewash American history and literature.
School board members dismissed book as being ‘unbalanced’
“...we needed the perspective of the American government and why Japanese internment happened... I said, ‘The other side is racism.’”
— Ann Zielke, parent on her conversation with board VP
About The Author
Julie Otsuka is the author of the novels When the Emperor Was Divine, winner of the Asian American Literary Award and the American Library Association Alex Award, and The Buddha in the Attic, an international bestseller and winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Prix Femina étranger, the Albatros Literaturpreis and a finalist for the National Book Award. Her newest novel is The Swimmers. A recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship and an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, she lives in New York City, where she writes every afternoon in her neighborhood café.
Photo: Jean-Luc Bertini