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2023 NBCC Award Winners Announced

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The winners of the 2023 National Book Critics Circle Awards were announced last night at the New School. Books published in English in 2022 were eligible to win in six categories — Nonfiction, Fiction, Biography, Autobiography, Poetry and Criticism. Additionally, the best first book won the John Leonard Prize award, and this year is the first time the best book translated into English of any genre won the Gregg Barrios Book in Translation Prize.

The first NBCC Awards were granted in 1976 with the aim to highlight excellent writing and start a conversation that centered reading, criticism, and literature. Winners are chosen from nominations received from the almost 800 authors, critics, publishers, and others who are NBCC members. The NBCC grants the only literary awards of this size that are chosen by critics.

The 2023 NBCC Award winners are as follows:


Bliss Montage by Ling Ma (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

Bliss Montage by Ling Ma book cover


The Method: How the Twentieth Century Learned to Act by Isaac Butler (Bloomsbury)


G-Man: J. Edgar Hoover and the Making of the American Century by Beverly Gage (Viking)


Stay True: A Memoir by Hua Hsu (Doubleday)


Hotel Oblivion by Cynthia Cruz (Four Way)


Free Indirect: The Novel in a Postfictional Age Timothy Bewes by (Columbia)

John Leonard Prize

cover of Night of the Living Rez: Stories by Morgan Talty, pastel font over illustration of night sky seen from the forest floor

Night of the Living Rez by Morgan Talty  (Tin House)

Gregg Barrios Book in Translation

Grey Bees by Andrey Kurkov translated by Boris Dralyuk (Deep Vellum)

Joy Harjo received the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, City Lights the Toni Morrison Achievement Award, and Barbara Hoffert the NBCC Service Award. For more information, visit NBCC.

Find more news and stories of interest from the book world in Breaking in Books.