The critics have spoken and, not surprisingly, Roberto Bolaño’s nearly nine-hundred-page novel 2666, published last year by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, took top honors in the fiction category of the National Book Critics Circle Awards, which were announced last night at a ceremony in New York City.
There was a surprise for poets, however, when, for the first time in NBCC history, two awards were given in a single category. August Kleinzahler won for Sleeping It Off in Rapid City (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) and Juan Felipe Herrera won for Half of the World in Light (University of Arizona Press).
Other winners included Dexter Filkins for The Forever War (Knopf) in the category of nonfiction, Ariel Sabar for My Father's Paradise: A Son's Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq (Algonquin) in autobiography, and Patrick French for The World Is What It Is: The Authorized Biography of V.S. Naipaul (Knopf) in biography.
Click here for a list of the finalists.
Last year, Mary Jo Bang won the NBCC Award in poetry for Elegy (Graywolf), Junot Díaz won in fiction for The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (Riverhead), and Edwidge Danticat won in autobiography for Brother, I'm Dying (Knopf).