March 15- March 22, 2007 Edition

National Book
Critics Circle
Awards Announced

NEW YORK, NY/3/12/07–The National Book Critics Circle Awards were announced at a Thursday evening ceremony in New York. Anita Desai was named winner of the 2006 fiction award for The Inheritance of Loss. Daniel Mendelsohn won the autobiography award for The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million. Simon Schama was awarded the nonfiction prize for Rough Crossings: Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution. Julie Phillips won the biography prize for James Tiptree Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon. The poetry prize went to Troy Jollimore for Tom Thomson in Purgatory. The

prize for criticism was given to Everything That Rises: A Book of Convergences, by Lawrence Weschler.

Desai’s second novel is set in the nineteen-eighties in northeast India. The story takes place in a crumbling, isolated house at the foot of Mount Kanchenjunga in the Himalayas occupied by an embittered judge who wants only to retire in peace, when his orphaned granddaughter, Sai, arrives on his doorstep.

Rough Crossings turns on a single huge question: if you were black in America at the start of the Revolutionary War, whom would you want to win? Phillips’s work, the first biography on the author, James Tiptree Jr., successfully explores this extraordinary life.

Mendelsohn’s The Lost is the story of a writer’s search for the truth behind his family’s tragic past in World War II.

The National Book Critics Circle, founded in 1974, is a non-profit organization consisting of nearly 700 active book reviewers who are interested in honoring quality writing and communicating with one another

about common concerns.

In recent years, the NBCC has made efforts to become a truly national organization by offering forums in locations nationwide. We look to the web to help us extend the intelligent discussion of books across the nation. We are pleased to welcome you to the NBCC site — we invite your comments and participation.

The centerpiece of NBCC activities is the annual awards for the best book in five categories: fiction, general nonfiction, biography/autobiography, poetry, and criticism.