Thursday, November 16, 2006

National Book Award Winners

This year's winners of the National Book Award are:

M.T. Anderson
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume One: The Pox Party (Candlewick Press)

Nathaniel Mackey
Splay Anthem (New Directions)

Timothy Egan
The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl (Houghton Mifflin)

Richard Powers
The Echo Maker
(Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
I'm actually familiar with three out of four writers (not the young people's lit one), although I haven't read the particular books.

Since I'm mostly into the poetry thing, here is the NBA blurb about Mackey, who is a rather challenging poet for the NBA to recognize.

2006 National Book Award Winner, Poetry

Nathaniel Mackey
Splay Anthem
New Directions

About the Book
Part antiphonal rant, part rhythmic whisper, Nathaniel Mackey’s new collection takes the reader to uncharted poetic spaces, forming the next installment of two ongoing serial poems Mackey has been writing for over twenty years: Song of the Andoumboulou and “Mu”.

About the Author
Nathaniel Mackey is a poet, literary critic, fiction writer, and journal editor whose eight books of poetry include Four for Trane, Septet for the End of Time, Outlantish, and Song of the Andoumboulou. His 1985 poetry book, Eroding Witness, was selected for publication in the National Poetry Series. He received a Whiting Writers’ Award in 1993 and was elected to the Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets in 2001. He is also the author of an ongoing prose composition of which three volumes have been published and of two volumes of literary criticism, Paracritical Hings (2005) and Discrepant Engagement: Dissonance, Cross-Culturality, and Experimental Writing (1993). He is editor of the literary magazine Hambone and is a Professor of Literature at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Suggested Links

Go read The Washington Post story about the winners.

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