Criticism & Features

NBCC Reads

What Are You Recommending, Edward Nawotka?


NBCC members and finalists and winners of our book award were eligible to vote in the winter edition of the NBCC’s Good Reads. Member critic Edward Nawotka voted for Lee Siegel’s “Against the Machine,” and two other books. Here he explains why:

Nonfiction: Against the Machine by Lee Siegel—Siegel offers an eloquent and welcome disquisition on the perils of the Internet age that explains how, like King Midas, Web 2.0 offers the promise of riches while dehumanizing us, transforming our deepest emotions and most private matters
into commodities to be consumed by others. 
Fiction: Life Class by Pat Barker. Barker’s latest novel once again imagines the horrors of World War One through the eyes of an idealistic artist, offering a visceral depiction of the Hell of war and, perhaps of even more importance, the Purgatory of survival.

Poetry: Sixty Poems by Charles Simic. This selection of poems by our Belgrade-born Poet Laureate culls some of the best work from his long career and is even more stunning for knowing that English is the poet’s adopted language. It’s proof that open borders benefits us all.

Edward Nawotka is books columnist at Bloomberg News, and a Southern Correspondent for Publishers Weekly.