Today, writer Pat Conroy announced the finalists for the 2010 National Book Award from the Flannery O’Connor Childhood Home in Savannah, Georgia. The finalists include rock legend and poet Patti Smith, whose memoir Just Kids (Ecco) is a nonfiction finalist, and Man Booker finalist Peter Carey, for his novel Parrot and Olivier in America (Knopf).

The fiction list also includes Great House by Nicole Krauss, So Much for That (Harper) by Lionel Shriver, and a novel that will likely come as a surprise to many: I, Hotel by Karen Tei Yamashita, a doorstopper opus published by small press Coffee House Books.

The nonfiction list features books about war and history, including Cultures of War: Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, 9-11, Iraq (Norton) by John W. Dower, as well as Barbara Demick’s Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea (Spiegel & Grau).

In the poetry category, MacArthur-winner C.D. Wright’s One With Others (Copper Canyon) joins books by relative newcomers and lesser-known poets, such as Monica Youn and Kathleen Graber. In young people’s literature, the nominees include Kathryn Erskine’s Mockingbird (Philomel) and Laura McNeal’s Dark Water (Knopf). Harper's Amistad imprint landed two nominees in the category with Walter Dean Myers for Lockdown and Rita Williams-Garcia for One Crazy Summer. In all, Harper and Random had four nominees, topping all publishers.

The winners in each category will be announced on Wednesday, November 17 at the National Book Awards ceremony, to be held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.

Here is the complete finalist list:



Peter Carey, Parrot and Olivier in America
Alfred A. Knopf

Jaimy Gordon, Lord of Misrule
McPherson & Co.

Nicole Krauss, Great House
W.W. Norton & Co.

Lionel Shriver, So Much for That
Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers

Karen Tei Yamashita, I Hotel
Coffee House Press


Barbara Demick, Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea
Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of The Random House Publishing Group

John W. Dower, Cultures of War: Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, 9-11, Iraq
W.W. Norton & Co. and The New Press

Patti Smith, Just Kids
Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers

Justin Spring, Secret Historian: The Life and Times of Samuel Steward
Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Megan K. Stack, Every Man in This Village Is a Liar: An Education in War


Kathleen Graber, The Eternal City
Princeton University Press

Terrance Hayes, Lighthead
Viking Penguin

James Richardson, By the Numbers
Copper Canyon Press

C.D. Wright, One with Others
Copper Canyon Press

Monica Youn, Ignatz
Four Way Books

Young People’s Literature

Paolo Bacigalupi, Ship Breaker
Little, Brown & Co.

Kathryn Erskine, Mockingbird
Philomel Books, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group

Laura McNeal, Dark Water
Alfred A. Knopf

Walter Dean Myers, Lockdown
Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers

Rita Williams-Garcia, One Crazy Summer
Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers