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Mar 23

And the Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award For Best Novel is…

The Sellout by Paul Beatty.

I’m late on this one because Beatty (and the other winners) were announced nearly a week ago.  I blame the Internet for not telling me sooner.

While my favourite novel was Anthony Marra’s The Tsar of Love and Techno this was a very strong crop of nominees and I’m more than happy to see Beatty take home the prize.  The Sellout is a difficult, angry book that refuses to assuage or comfort anyone’s guilt, white, black or otherwise, about racial issues in America.  It’s angry, and it’s hilarious and some of the prose is jaw droppingly brilliant, and while there’s very little story to hold the structure of the book together that doesn’t entirely matter because the book’s cutting, caustic tone keeps you reading.

So an excellent choice from the NBCC.  I’m not sure if it’s been published in the UK, and if so when, but it might be a chance to appear on this year’s Booker.

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