The National Book Critics Circle, which is nice enough to allow yours truly to claim membership far above his station, announced their 2008 finalists over the weekend. There are some excellent choices here, particularly in nonfiction. Winners will be announced March 12. As Bloomberg News noted, “The NBCC awards don’t come with a monetary prize, but are well-respected in the literary world.” Damn right.
The full list is below. Now start reading.
Roberto Bolaño, 2666. Farrar, Straus
Marilynne Robinson, Home, Farrar, Straus
Aleksandar Hemon, The Lazarus Project, Riverhead
M. Glenn Taylor, The Ballad of Trenchmouth Taggart, West Virginia University Press
Elizabeth Strout, Olive Kittredge, Random
August Kleinzahler, Sleeping It Off in Rapid City, Farrar, Strauss
Juan Felipe Herrera, Half the World in Light (University of Arizona Press)
Devin Johnston, Sources (Turtle Point Press)
Pierre Martory (trans. John Ashbery), The Landscapist (Sheep Meadow Press)
Brenda Shaughnessy, Human Dark with Sugar (Copper Canyon Press)
Richard Brody, Everything Is Cinema: The Working Life Of Jean-Luc Godard. Metropolitan Books
Vivian Gornick, The Men in My Life. Boston Review/MIT
Joel L. Kraemer, Maimonides: The Life and World of One of Civilization’s Greatest Minds. Doubleday
Reginald Shepherd, Orpheus in the Bronx: Essays on Identity, Politics, and the Freedom of Poetry, University of Michigan Press
Seth Lerer, Children’s Literature: A Reader’s History: Reader’s History from Aesop to Harry Potter, University of Chicago Press
Paula J. Giddings, Ida, A Sword Among Lions: Ida B. Wells and the Campaign Against Lynching. Amistad.
Steve Coll, The Bin Ladens: An Arabian Family In An American Century. Penguin Press.
Patrick. French, The World Is What It Is: The Authorized Biography of V.S. Naipaul. Knopf.
Annette Gordon-Reed, The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family. Norton
Brenda Wineapple, White Heat: The Friendship of Emily Dickinson & Thomas Wentworth Higginson. Knopf
Rick Bass, Why I Came West. Houghton Mifflin.
Helene Cooper, The House On Sugar Beach, Simon and Schuster
Honor Moore, The Bishop’s Daughter. WW Norton
Andrew X. Pham, The Eaves Of Heaven. Harmony Books.
Ariel Sabar, My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq. Algonquin
Dexter Filkins, The Forever War, Knopf
Drew Gilpin Faust, This Republic of Suffering: Death and the Civil War, Knopf
Jane Mayer, The Dark Side, Doubleday
Allan Lichtman, White Protestant Nation, Atlantic
George C. Herring, From Colony to Superpower: US Foreign Relations Since 1776. Oxford University Press