NEW YORK, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- Novels by Jonathan Franzen, Jennifer Egan and David Grossman are among the National Book Critics Circle's finalists for 2010.
The finalists for fiction, announced Saturday in New York, include two books in translation, "To the End of the Land" by Grossman, an Israeli, and "Comedy in a Minor Key" by Hans Keilson, a German Jew who survived World War II by hiding in Holland. Irish author Paul Murray was nominated for "Skippy Dies," while Americans Egan and Franzen were recognized for "A Visit from the Goon Squad" and "Freedom," respectively.
Two literary biographies, Sarah Bakewell's "How To Live, or a Life of Montaigne" and Selina Hastings' "The Secret Lives Of Somerset Maugham," were nominated, along with books about the lives of Crazy Horse, Simon Wiesenthal and the fictional Charlie Chan.
The autobiography and memoir nominees are Patti Smith for "Just Kids," along with Kai Bird, David Dow, Christopher Hitchens, Rahna Reiko Rizzuto and Darin Strauss.
The non-fiction nominees are Barbara Demick for "Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea," S.C. Gwynne for "Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches," Jennifer Homans for "Apollo's Angels: A History of Ballet," Siddhartha Mukherjee for "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer" and Isabel Wilkerson for "The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration."
Poetry nominees include National Book Award winner Terrance Hayes and former U.S. poet laureate Kay Ryan.
The criticism category ranges from Elif Batuman's "The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them" to Clare Cavanagh's "Lyric Poetry and Modern Politics: Russia, Poland, and the West."