National Book Award finalists announced

By Daniel S Levine,

The National Book Foundation announced the finalists for the National Book Award. The finalists include the late Anthony Shadid and Junot Diaz, who was recently awarded a genius grant by the MacArthur Foundation.

The New York Times reports that Shadid’s House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East was nominated in the non-fiction category. Shadid was a New York Times foreign correspondent who died while covering the conflict in Syria earlier this year.

Other non-fiction nominees include Robert Caro’s fourth Lyndon Johnson book The Passage of Power, Behind the Beautiful Forever by Katherine Boo, Anne Applebaum's Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe 1945-1956 and Domingo Martinez's The Boy Kings of Texas.

Diaz, who has already won a Pulitzer Prize and was awarded the MacArthur genius grant earlier this month, was nominated in the fiction category for This is How You Lose Her. According to USA Today, the other fiction nominees include David Eggers’ A Hologram for the King, Louise Erdrich’s The Round House, Kevin Powers' The Yellow Birds and Ben Fountain's Billy Lynn's Long Half-Time Walk.

In the past, the National Book Foundation has been criticized for honoring unknowns, but this year’s nominees have found commercial success. Many have gotten rave reviews and three fiction finalists were on the cover of the New York Times Sunday Book Review.

You can check out the complete list of nominees at NationalBook.org.

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