November 2, 2017
Cynthia Nixon, Anne Hathaway, and Bill Clinton to headline National Book Awards
by Taylor Sperry
The National Book Awards ceremony is one of the biggest events of the year for the book publishing industry, and the National Book Foundation has just announced that Cynthia Nixon will be this year’s host.
While most of us know Nixon for her role as Miranda Hobbes on HBO’s “Sex & the City” (itself an adaptation of Candace Bushnell’s 1996 book of the same name), the actress is “no stranger to the literary world,” as Michael Schaub reports for the Los Angeles Times. She has, he notes, starred in films based on the novels I Am the Cheese by Robert Cormier and The Pelican Brief by John Grisham, and “recently portrayed Emily Dickinson in the 2016 movie ‘A Quiet Passion.’”
Nixon isn’t the only headliner at this year’s gala. In two press releases from September and October, respectively, the National Book Foundation announced that actress Anne Hathaway will present a lifetime achievement award to author Annie Proulx and President Bill Clinton will present a lifetime achievement award to Scholastic chairman, president, and CEO Richard Robinson.
Winners of the National Book Award in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and young people’s literature will be announced at the ceremony, which will be held at Cipriani Wall Street on November 15. Finalists below.
Elliot Ackerman, Dark at the Crossing
Lisa Ko, The Leavers
Min Jin Lee, Pachinko
Carmen Maria Machado, Her Body and Other Parties: Stories
Jesmyn Ward, Sing, Unburied, Sing
Erica Armstrong Dunbar, Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge
Frances FitzGerald, The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape America
Masha Gessen, The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia
David Grann, Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI
Nancy MacLean, Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America
Frank Bidart, Half-light: Collected Poems 1965-2016
Leslie Harrison, The Book of Endings
Layli Long Soldier, WHEREAS
Shane McCrae, In the Language of My Captor
Danez Smith, Don’t Call Us Dead: Poems
YOUNG PEOPLE’S LITERATURE
Elana K. Arnold, What Girls Are Made Of
Robin Benway, Far from the Tree
Erika L. Sánchez, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter
Rita Williams-Garcia, Clayton Byrd Goes Underground
Ibi Zoboi, American Street
Taylor Sperry is a former Melville House editor.