The 30 finalists for this year’s National Book Critics Circle Awards were announced Monday, and Minneapolis’ Graywolf Press has two books in the running. Kevin Young’s “The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness,” is a finalist in criticism, and D.A. Powell’s “Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys,” is a finalist in poetry.
The NBCC awards, established in 1974, is the only award that is bestowed by working critics and book-review editors.
The winners will be announced Feb. 28. Here’s the full list of finalists:
Katherine Boo, “Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity” (this book also won the National Book Award); Steve Coll, “Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power”; Jim Holt. “Why Does the World Exist? An Existential Detective Story”; David Quammen, “Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic”; Andrew Solomon, “Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity.”
Reyna Grande, “The Distance Between Us”; Maureen N. McLane, “My Poets”; Anthony Shadid,“House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East”; Leanne Shapton, “Swimming Studies”; Ngugi wa Thiong’o, “In the House of the Interpreter.”
Robert A. Caro,“The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson”; Lisa Cohen, “All We Know: Three Lives”; Michael Gorra, “Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece”; Lisa Jarnot, “Robert Duncan, The Ambassador from Venus: A Biography”; Tom Reiss, “The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo.”
Paul Elie, “Reinventing Bach”; Daniel Mendelsohn, “Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture”; Mary Ruefle, “Madness, Rack, and Honey”; Marina Warner, “Stranger Magic: Charmed States and the Arabian Nights”; Kevin Young, “The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness.”
David Ferry, “Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations”; Lucia Perillo, “On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths”; Allan Peterson, “Fragile Acts”; D.A. Powell, “Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys”; A.E. Stallings, “Olives.”