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Powers wins big in U.S.

Down in the U.S., the National Book Award winners have been named. They include Richard Powers’ The Echo Maker for fiction; Timothy Egan’s The Worst Hard Time (a history of the Dust Bowl storms of the 1930s) for non-fiction; Nathaniel Mackey’s Splay Anthem for poetry; and M. T. Anderson’s The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume One: The Pox Party in the children’s category.

As the New York Times notes, “As in recent years, the fiction category raised eyebrows in the publishing industry for its lack of commercially known nominees in a year of big-name authors.” At least the evening’s speeches apparently passed without Stephen King-style recriminations, though one of this year’s lifetime achievement award winners, poet Adrienne Rich, did stake out the daring position that poetry has a value beyond its (lack of) commercial success.

Anyway, for those curious about Richard Powers, the litblog Return of the Reluctant has compiled a whack of Powers-related links.

Related links:
Click here for the New York Times coverage
Click here for Return of the Reluctant’s Richard Powers roundup