National Book Awards Finalists

Holy shit! Vollmann gets nominated, as does Christopher Sorrentino. We got us some surprises this year for that National Book Awards. Here’s the full list:

E.L. Doctorow, The March (Random House)
Mary Gaitskill, Veronica (Pantheon)
Christopher Sorrentino, Trance (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Renè Steinke, Holy Skirts (William Morrow)
William T. Vollmann, Europe Central (Viking)

Alan Burdick, Out of Eden: An Odyssey of Ecological Invasion (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Leo Damrosch, Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Restless Genius (Houghton Mifflin)
Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking (Alfred A. Knopf)
Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn, 102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers (Times Books)
Adam Hochschild, Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves (Houghton Mifflin)

John Ashbery, Where Shall I Wander (Ecco)
Frank Bidart, Star Dust: Poems (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Brendan Galvin, Habitat: New and Selected Poems, 1965-2005
(Louisiana State University Press)
W.S. Merwin, Migration: New and Selected Poems (Copper Canyon Press)
Vern Rutsala, The Moment’s Equation (Ashland Poetry Press)

Jeanne Birdsall, The Penderwicks (Alfred A. Knopf)
Adele Griffin, Where I Want to Be (Putnam)
Chris Lynch, Inexcusable (Atheneum)
Walter Dean Myers, Autobiography of My Dead Brother (HarperTempest)
Deborah Wiles, Each Little Bird That Sings (Harcourt)

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One Comment

  1. The Doctorow is in at NY Times

    Doctorow’s novel, a best seller almost universally praised by critics, stood out in a year of disappointments in fiction, with Michael Cunningham’s “Specimen Days” and Jonathan Safran Foer’s “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” among those failing to meet expectations.

    Doctorow, author of “Ragtime,” “Billy Bathgate” and other acclaimed historical novels, won the National Book Award in 1986 for “World’s Fair.” This was his fifth nomination, but first since 1989.

    Other fiction finalists this year were Mary Gaitskill’s “Veronica,” Christopher Sorrentino’s “Trance,” Rene Steinke’s “Holy Skirts” and William T. Vollmann’s “Europe Central,” an 800-page novel, including footnotes, about Germany and the Soviet Union in the 20th century.

    Which reminds me of a quote in the panel of Going After Cacciato:

    Saying’ GAC is a book about Vietnam is like saying Moby Dick is about a whale.

    Of course, Europe Central still sits on my tbr stack, so perhaps it is merely about Germany and the USSR.

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