Groff and Doerr are among the finalists for the National Book Award


NEW YORK (AP) – Lauren Groff is a National Book Award finalist for her third book in a row, nominated Tuesday in the fiction category for her historical novel “The Matrix”. Anthony Doerr’s multigenerational epic “Cloud Cuckoo Land,” his first work since Pulitzer Prize-winning “All the Light We Cannot See,” was also on the list.

Groff, finalist in 2015 for his marital saga “Fates and Furies” and in 2018 for his collection of stories “Florida”, joins a group of elite authors including Vladimir Nabokov and Rachel Carson who have been cited for three books. ‘in a row.

The other fiction finalists announced on Tuesday are Laird Hunt’s “Zorrie,” an orphan’s tale set in rural Indiana; “The Prophets” by early novelist Robert Jones Jr., a love story between two enslaved men in the southern United States; and Jason Mott’s “Hell of a Book” meta-tale, about a book tour and the author’s childhood in the South.

After posting long lists of 10 last month in fiction and four other competitive categories – non-fiction, poetry, translation and children’s literature – the award judges narrowed each list to five on Tuesday. The winners, who will each receive $ 10,000, will be announced Nov. 17 at an online ceremony due to the pandemic.

Two honorary recipients have already been named: playwright Karen Tei Yamashita will receive a Lifetime Achievement Medal for distinguished contribution to American literature, and author-librarian Nancy Pearl will receive the Literary Award for Outstanding Service at the American literary community.

The judges, who include authors, critics and booksellers, chose from nearly 1,900 books submitted by publishers. The awards are presented by the National Book Foundation nonprofit.

In the non-fiction, the finalists are “A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance” by Hanif Abdurraqib, “Running Out: In Search of Water on the High Plains” by Lucas Bessire, “Tastes Like War: A Memoir ”by Grace M. Cho”, “Covered with Night: A Story of Murder and Indigenous Justice in Early America” by Nicole Eustace and “All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, a Black Family Keepsake” by Tiya Miles.

The novel gra (hic by Shing Yin Khor “The Legend of Aunt Po” is a finalist in children’s literature, with “Last Night at the Telegraph Club” by Malinda Lo, “Too Bright to See” by Kyle Lukoff, the documentary by Kekla Magoon “Revolution in Our Time: The Black Panther Party’s Promise to the People” and “Me (Moth)” by Amber McBride.

The poetry finalists are “What Noise Against the Cane” by Desiree C. Bailey, “Floaters” by Martín Espada, “Sho by Douglas Kearney”, “A Thousand Times You Lose Your Treasure” by Hoa Nguyen and “The Sunflower Cast a Spell to Save ”by Jackie Wang. We of the Void.

For the translation, the finalists were: “Winter in Sokcho” by Elisa Shua Dusapin, translated from French by Aneesa Abbas Higgins; “Peach Blossom Paradise” by Ge Fei, translated from Cantonese by Canaan Morse; “The Twilight Zone” by Nona Fernández, translated from Spanish by Natasha Wimmer; “When we stop understanding the world” by Benjamín Labatut, translated from Spanish by Adrian Nathan West; and “The clay planet” by Samar Yazbek, translated from Arabic by Leri Price.

Notable works that made it to the long lists but not the last five include two book club picks from Oprah Winfrey, Honorée Fanonne Jeffers’ debut novel “WEB Du Bois Love Songs”; Richard Powers’ “Astonishment”; and Louis Menand’s non-fictional cultural history on the Cold War “The Free World”.


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