Boo, Ferry, Caro, Smith, Fountain, and Shadid Among Finalists for the National Book Critics Circle Awards

The National Book Critics Circle Awards, the only awards given by working critics and book review editors, are coming your way on February 28, 2013. Finalists have just been announced. As always, this year’s finalists range from immediately recognizable titles like Robert A. Caro’s IMG scally11 Boo, Ferry, Caro, Smith, Fountain, and Shadid Among Finalists for the National Book Critics Circle Awards The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (Alfred A. Knopf), Katherine Boo’s Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity (Random House), and David Ferry’s Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations (University of Chicago Press)—the last two National Book Award winners—to terrific surprises like Mary Ruefle’s Madness, Rack, and Honey (Wave Books), a refreshingly different work of criticism; Laurent Binet’s HHhH (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), a French prize winner about the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich; and Lisa Jarnot’s Robert Duncan, The Ambassador from Venus: A Biography (University of California Press), whose subject has come to have a powerful influence on the most recent generation of poets. A complete list of finalists follows; for further information, go to bookcritics.org.

NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE FINALISTS, PUBLISHING YEAR 2012

AUTOBIOGRAPHY
Reyna Grande. The Distance Between Us. Atria Books
Maureen N. McLane. My Poets. Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Anthony Shadid. House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Leanne Shapton. Swimming Studies. Blue Rider Press
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o. In the House of the Interpreter. Pantheon

BIOGRAPHY
Robert A. Caro. The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson. Alfred A. Knopf
Lisa Cohen. All We Know: Three Lives. Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Michael Gorra. Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece. A Liveright Book: W. W. Norton
Lisa Jarnot. Robert Duncan, The Ambassador from Venus: A Biography. University of California Press
Tom Reiss. The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo. Crown Publishers

CRITICISM
Paul Elie. Reinventing Bach. Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Daniel Mendelsohn. Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture. New York Review Books
Mary Ruefle. Madness, Rack, and Honey. Wave Books
Marina Warner. Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights. Belknap Press: Harvard University Press
Kevin Young. The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness. Graywolf Press

FICTION
Laurent Binet. HHhH. tr. by Sam Taylor. Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Ben Fountain. Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Ecco
Adam Johnson. The Orphan Master’s Son. Random House
Lydia Millet, Magnificence. W. W. Norton
Zadie Smith. NW. The Penguin Press

NONFICTION
Katherine Boo. Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity. Random House
Steve Coll. Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power. The Penguin Press
Jim Holt. Why Does the World Exist? An Existential Detective Story. A Liveright Book: W. W. Norton
David Quammen. Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic. W.W. Norton
Andrew Solomon. Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity. Scribner

POETRY
David Ferry. Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations. University of Chicago Press
Lucia Perillo. On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths. Copper Canyon Press
Allan Peterson. Fragile Acts. McSweeney’s Books
D. A. Powell. Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys. Graywolf Press
A. E. Stallings. Olives. TriQuarterly: Northwestern University Press

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing: William Deresiewicz
Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award: Sandra Gilbert and Susan Gubar

 

 

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Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (bhoffert@mediasourceinc.com, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president of the National Book Critics Circle, to which she has just been reelected.

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