Tuesday, January 22, 2008

NBCC Awards

I'm behind the times on this, but I just noticed the National Book Critics Circle announced their award finalists a little while back. The actual winners aren't announced until Mar 6th, at an event in New York.

I can't speak to about the titles they choose because I haven't read most of them, but I do watch these awards with interest. Some awards can be amazingly myopic year after year, seemingly nominating from a tiny pool of possibles, and generally awarding writers that bare a lot of similarities with the judges.... I don't really feel that way about the NBCC Award, though. They seem more inclined to read widely and inclusively (which means, to me, not that they award books without merit but that they take the time to actually read a wider range of books in the first place, so their choices don't end up looking exactly like some other awards).

Their fiction list is a pretty diverse bunch:

Vikram Chandra, Sacred Games, HarperCollins
Junot Diaz, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Riverhead
Hisham Matar, In the Country of Men, Dial Press
Joyce Carol OatesThe Gravedigger's Daughter, Ecco
Marianne Wiggins, The Shadow Catcher, S. & S.

You can see the entire list at the Critical Mass Blog, which is HERE.

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Blogger Larry Nolen said...

I've only read the Díaz but damn, that book was good! If you haven't read it yet, David, I'd highly, highly recommend it. There's quite a bit of funny stuff in there, which sets up the ending beautifully.

12:47 AM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

I haven't read it, but I will, I will. I'm a fan of Diaz's writing as well. I've taught stories from DROWN in pretty much every class for the last few years. I'll look forward to this one.

12:40 PM  
Blogger Larry Nolen said...

I plan on getting Drown later this year (money permitting), but I did learn that there is a character from the novel that appears in the collection, Yunior, so that might be of interest to you :D

3:34 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

Yes, Yunior is a major and recurring character! Very interesting...

3:50 PM  

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