The Last Paladin wins W.Y. Boyd Literary Award for Excellence in Military Fiction

For Immediate Release
Thu, 04/27/2023


Cheryl Malden

Program Officer


American Library Association


The Last Paladin by P.T. Deutermann, published by St.  Martin’s Press. Is the winner of the 2023 W.Y. Boyd Literary Award for Excellence in Military Fiction.

The W.Y. Boyd Literary Award honors the best American Military Fiction set in a period when the United States was at war.  The $5,000 award and citation, donated by author W.Y. Boyd II recognizes the service of veterans, and encourages the writing and publishing of outstanding works related fiction. 

P.T. Deutermann’s novel is based on a true story. The Last Paladin’s story follows the USS Holland, a ship summoned from hunting German U-Boats in the Atlantic to support destroyers fighting the Japanese in the Pacific. The year is 1944, and the war against Japan is at a crucial juncture, as the United States seeks to retake the central Pacific Island chains in preparation for the invasion of the Japanese homeland.

The USS Holland is dispatched into the vast and remote South Pacific operating areas to hunt for Japanese submarines.   They discover using radio intercepts that the Japanese have set up a one-thousand-mile-long picket line of six submarines. The mission of the USS Holland and a few other destroyers is to discover the submarines and destroy them so the American task forces can achieve strategic surprise.

The author describes the high-stakes naval warfare at its best from the first-hand accounts of a former destroyer captain’s understanding of dramatic, intense combat.   This is an unforgettable novel of Naval warfare.

The W.Y. Boyd Award Jury is very pleased to have selected The Last Paladin as this year’s winner.   The annual award will be presented on Sunday, June 25 ,2023 at the ALA Annual Conference.

Members of the W. Y. Boyd Literary Jury are the chair Robert E. Schnare, Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island (retired), Ron Steensland, Lexington Public Library (retired), Maxine Reneker, Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, California (retired); Andrew Mangels, director, West Lake Library, West Lake, Ohio and Blinn Sheffield, acquisitions librarian, Greenwood-LeFlore Public Library, Greenwood Mississippi.

The deadline for submission of books for next year’s W.Y. Boyd Literary Award is Dec 1, 2023.   Guidelines and applications are available on the ALA website.