The National Book Critics Circle Award

2017 NBCC Award Winners

2017 Nonfiction Finalists

Jack E. Davis, The Gulf: The Making of An American Sea (Liveright)

Frances FitzGerald, The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America (Simon & Schuster)

Masha Gessen, The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia (Riverhead)

Kapka Kassabova, Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe (Graywolf)

Adam Rutherford, A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived: The Human Story Retold Through Our Genes (The Experiment)

Biography Finalists

Caroline Fraser, Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder (Metropolitan Books)

Edmund Gordon, The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography (Oxford University Press)

Howard Markel, The Kelloggs: The Battling Brothers of Battle Creek (Pantheon)

William Taubman, Gorbachev: His Life and Times (W.W. Norton)

Kenneth Whyte, Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times (Knopf)


Thi Bui, The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir (Abrams)   

Roxane Gay, Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body (Harper)

Henry Marsh, Admissions: Life as a Brain Surgeon (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martins)

Ludmilla Petrushevskaya, The Girl From the Metropol Hotel: Growing Up in Communist Russia, translated by Anna Summers (Penguin)   

Xiaolu Guo, Nine Continents: A Memoir In and Out of China (Grove)   


Nuar Alsadir, Fourth Person Singular (Oxford University Press)  

James Longenbach, Earthling (W.W. Norton)

Layli Long Soldier, Whereas (Graywolf)

Frank Ormsby, The Darkness of Snow (Wake Forest University Press)

Ana Ristović, Directions for Use, translated by Steven Teref and Maja Teref (Zephyr Press)

Criticism Finalists

Carina Chocano, You Play the Girl: On Playboy Bunnies, Stepford Wives, Train Wrecks, & Other Mixed Messages (Mariner)

Edwidge Danticat, The Art of Death: Writing the Final Story (Graywolf)

Camille T. Dungy, Guidebook to Relative Strangers: Journeys into Race, Motherhood and History  (W.W. Norton)   

Valeria Luiselli, Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions (Coffee House)                  

Kevin Young, Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts and Fake News (Graywolf)   

Fiction Finalists

Mohsin Hamid, Exit West (Riverhead)

Alice McDermott, The Ninth Hour (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

Arundhati Roy, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (Knopf)

Joan Silber, Improvement (Counterpoint)

Jesmyn Ward, Sing, Unburied, Sing (Scribner)

Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing Finalists

David Biespiel, Maureen Corrigan, Ruth Franklin, James Marcus

Announcing the National Book Critics Awards Finalists for Publishing Year 2017

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Awards Information

Videos and Podcasts

NBCC 2016 Awards Ceremony

NBCC 2015 Finalists Reading

NBCC 2014 Awards Ceremony

NBCC 2013 Awards Ceremony

All videos and podcasts.


From the Critical Mass blog

Video: NBCC Awards Ceremony for Award Year 2017

March 15, 2018, The New School, New York, NY Welcome: Luis Jaramillo, Interim Director, The New School Writing Program  Opening Remarks: Kate

NBCC Awards: John McPhee Accepts the Sandrof Award for Lifetime Achievement

John McPhee is a journalist, essayist, author, and longtime journalism professor at Princeton University. He is the author of more than 30 books,

NBCC Awards: Charles Finch, Balakian Award for Excellence in Reviewing

The recipient of the 2017 Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing, given to an NBCC member for exceptional critical work, was Charles

NBCC Awards: Carmen Maria Machado, John Leonard Award Winner

Carmen Maria Machado’s fiction collection Her Body and Other Parties (Graywolf) was the recipient of the John Leonard Prize, recognizing an