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National Book Critics Circle Award Finalists

It seems like just yesterday that I posted the National Book Critics Circle Award winners. So much so, in fact, that I searched for my original post to make sure I wasn’t repeating myself. Turns out it was about one year ago, and one year is enough time for a new batch of excellent titles to be published. Here are the finalists for this year’s National Book Critics Circle awards. The winners will be announced on February 28th, a date on which I’m sure I’ll be compelled to ask again, Where has the time gone?

FICTION

HHhH, by Laurent Binet and translated by Sam Taylor

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, by Ben Fountain

The Orphan Master’s Son, by Adam Johnson

Magnificence, by Lydia Millet

NW, by Zadie Smith

NONFICTION

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity, by Katherine Boo

Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power, by Steve Coll

Why Does the World Exist? An Existential Detective Story, by Jim Holt

Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, by David Quammen

Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity, by Andrew Solomon

AUTOBIOGRAPHY

The Distance Between Us, Reyna Grande

My Poets, by Maureen N. McLane

House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East, by Anthony Shadid

Swimming Studies, by Leanne Shapton

In the House of the Interpreter, by Ngugi wa Thiong’o

BIOGRAPHY

The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, by Robert A. Caro

All We Know: Three Lives, by Lisa Cohen

Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece, by Michael Gorra

Robert Duncan, The Ambassador from Venus: A Biography, by Lisa Jarnot

The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo, by Tom Reiss

CRITICISM

Reinventing Bach, by Paul Elie

Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture, by Daniel Mendelsohn

Madness, Rack, and Honey, by Mary Ruefle

Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights, by Marina Warner

The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness, by Kevin Young

POETRY

Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations, by David Ferry

On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths, by Lucia Perillo

Fragile Acts, by Allan Peterson

Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys, by D. A. Powell

Olives, by A. E. Stallings

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About the Author:

When Sarah Hunter is not reading for her job as associate editor at Booklist, she's baking something tasty or planning trips to the Pacific Northwest.

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