Today they announced the five finalists for each category of the National Book Awards.


  • The Flamethrowers, by Rachel Kushner
  • The Lowland, by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • The Good Lord Bird, by James McBride
  • Bleeding Edge, by Thomas Pynchon
  • Tenth of December, by George Saunders


  • Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin, by Jill Lepore
  • Hitler’s Furies: German Women in the Nazi Killing Fields, by Wendy Lower
  • The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America, by George Packer
  • The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, by Alan Taylor
  • Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, & the Prison of Belief, by Lawrence Wright


  • Metaphysical Dog, by Frank Bidart
  • Stay, Illusion, by Lucie Brock-Broido
  • The Big Smoke, by Adrian Matejka
  • Black Aperture, by Matt Rasmussen
  • Incarnadine: Poems, by Martha Ronk

Young People’s Literature:

  • The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp, by Kathi Appelt
  • The Think About Luck, by Cynthia Kadohata
  • Far Far Away, by Tom McNeal
  • Picture Me Gone, by Meg Rosoff
  • Boxers & Saints, by Gene Luen Yang
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