Elizabeth Strout, the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer from Brunswick and a favorite of former president Barack Obama, has added another accolade. On Wednesday, Strout won The Story Prize, which includes a $20,000 award and an engraved bowl, for her collection of stories, “Anything Is Possible.”

She received the award Wednesday in New York.

“Anything Is Possible,” published by Random House, is a collection of nine stories that explores the lives of its rural characters. Other finalists for books published in 2017 were Daniel Alarcón for “The King Is Always Above the People” (Riverhead Books) and Ottessa Moshfegh for “Homesick for Another World” (Penguin Press). All three finalists read from and discussed their work during Wednesday’s event. Alarcón and Moshfegh each received $5,000 as runners-up.

The judges cited “Anything Is Possible” for its power and for Strout’s vision:

“The intelligent prose is seemingly humble but elegant in its subtlety and enchanting in its overall effect. The blade of her wit is so sharp, you barely feel it until after the slice. Strout is a specialist in the reticence of people, and her characters are compelling because of the complexity of their internal lives, and the clarity with which that complexity is depicted. It is a sublime pleasure to read her work,” they wrote.

Judges on Elizabeth Strout’s writing: ‘The blade of her wit is so sharp, you barely feel it until after the slice. ‘ Photo by Leonardo Cendamo

Obama named it among his favorite books of 2017.

Strout is the author of the Pulitzer-winning “Olive Kitteridge,” as well as the novels “My Name Is Lucy Barton,” “The Burgess Boys,” “Abide with Me” and “Amy and Isabelle,” which won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize.

Established in 2004, The Story Prize honors the author of an outstanding collection of short fiction. The award is underwritten by the Chisholm Foundation.

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