Latina Author Lizette Epps Wins BookFest Award in Nonfiction

Lizette Epps has been recognized for her book "Our Voices: Little Stories Through a Latina Lens"

Lizette Epps bookfest

Photo: Instagram/@inkedimaginationlve

We love seeing Latina authors paving the way and advocating for greater representation of our community in publishing. We especially love it when they get rewarded for their work like Elizabeth Acevedo winning the NAACP Image Award in Fiction for her adult debut Family Lore earlier this year. Most recently, Puerto Rican author Lizette Epps, who is also a community leader, businesswoman, and advocate, has received critical acclaim for her debut Our Voices: Little Stories Through a Latina Lens, an anthology of short stories centering the Latinx diaspora across the U.S. On April 6, in recognition of her groundbreaking work, the book won first place at The Spring 2024 BookFest awards ceremony in the Non-fiction Category in Society & Social Sciences on Race, Class, Culture, & Religion, according to Berks Weekly.

“Despite the doubters who tried to dampen my dream of becoming a writer, today proves that dreams do come true!” Epps said in an Instagram post announcing the news. “Entering 2024, I spoke into the universe that sharing greatness would be my focus, and now, here’s another bit to share! 🌟 ‘Our Voices: Little Stories Through a Latina Lens’ just clinched 1st place at The BookFest Awards in the Non-fiction Category in Society & Social Sciences on Race, Class, Culture, & Religion! 🥇🌟 Grateful for this recognition and the opportunity to amplify diverse voices. Huge thanks to everyone who has supported this journey! This is just the beginning!”

Held twice a year in the spring and fall, The BookFest Awards were created to honor authors of fiction and nonfiction. Authors can submit their work for consideration in a variety of categories and are evaluated by a panel of expert judges using criteria for genre, theme, and aesthetics. Published in December 2023, Our Voices was recognized as a “captivating” short story collection with deeply personal narratives from the Latinx community in the U.S., according to the awards site. It explores the triumphs and resilience of our people while touching on a variety of themes including love, identity, strength, heritage, growth, and cultural pride. Epps, who also works as a community advocate, speaker, and businesswoman, grew up in New Jersey and was exposed to a wide array of cultures throughout her childhood. Above all, she learned how to find comfort in her Puerto Rican heritage and other influences in her hometown. She now lives in Reading, Pennsylvania.

“My inspiration for this book was to offer a glimpse into the lives of Latinos and Hispanics grappling with challenges, embracing triumphs, and discovering the beauty of their individual identities,” Epps said as reported by Berks Weekly. “I wanted to capture the emotions and experiences of these characters, drawing readers into a world where the ordinary becomes extraordinary, and where every story is a testament to the power of the human spirit. This is about so much more than a book; it’s a bridge that spans cultures, generations, and experiences.”

Our Voices: Little Stories Through a Latina Lens is available to purchase in English and Spanish on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

In this Article

Author Latina Author latina authors news puerto rican Puerto Rican author trending
More on this topic