National Book Critics Circle Award Finalists Announced

This morning the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) announced the finalists for its 2018 awards. The awards are given annually for books of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, criticism, autobiography, and biography published in the previous year.

The finalists in poetry are Terrance Hayes for American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin (Penguin Books), Ada Limón for The Carrying (Milkweed Editions), Erika Meitner for Holy Moly Carry Me (BOA Editions), Diane Seuss for Still Life With Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl (Graywolf Press), and Adam Zagajewski for Asymmetry, translated by Clare Cavanagh (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

The finalists in fiction are Anna Burns for Milkman (Graywolf Press), Patrick Chamoiseau for Slave Old Man, translated by Linda Coverdale (New Press), Denis Johnson for The Largesse of the Sea Maiden (Random House), Rachel Kushner for The Mars Room (Scribner), and Luis Alberto Urrea for The House of Broken Angels (Little, Brown).

The finalists in autobiography are Richard Beard for The Day That Went Missing: A Family’s Story (Little, Brown), Nicole Chung for All You Can Ever Know (Catapult), Rigoberto González for What Drowns the Flowers in Your Mouth: A Memoir of Brotherhood (University of Wisconsin Press), Nora Krug for Belonging: A German Reckons With History and Home (Scribner), Nell Painter for Old in Art School: A Memoir of Starting Over (Counterpoint), and Tara Westover for Educated (Random House).

The NBCC also announced that Tommy Orange has won the John Leonard Prize for his debut novel, There There (Knopf). The Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing was awarded to editor, columnist, and NPR Fresh Air book critic Maureen Corrigan, while Arte Público Press received the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award. Visit the NBCC website to read the full list of finalists, including those in the categories of general nonfiction, biography, and criticism.

Established in 1975, the National Book Critics Circle Awards are selected by the NBCC’s board of directors, composed of twenty-four editors and critics from leading print and online publications. Last year’s winners included poet Layli Long Soldier and novelist Joan Silber. The 2018 winners will be announced on March 14 at the New School in New York City.

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  • January 22, 2019