Critical Notes

Roundup: NBCC winners, Clarice Lispector, Michael Martone, more

By Mark Athitakis

Last Thursday’s National Book Critics Circle awards attracted plenty of coverage, including reports from the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and other outlets. At Commentary’s website, D.G. Myers weighs in on the fiction winner, Edith Pearlman’s story collection Binocular Vision; her story “Settlers,” which the magazine published in 1986, is now available on the magazine’s website. You can check out photos from the awards reception on our Facebook page.

Benjamin Moser, who translated New Directions’ new edition of Clarice Lispector’s novel The Hour of the Star, participates in a roundtable on Lispector’s work at the Quarterly Conversation. Colm Toibin delivers an appreciation of the novel at the site as well.

John Domini reviews Michael Martone’s new story collection, Four for a Quarter, also at the Quarterly Conversation.

Carmela Ciuraru reviews Lauren Groff’s novel Arcadia for Newsday.

Evan Hughes discusses the real-life tale of infidelity and academia that inspired Saul Bellow’s Herzog at the Awl.

Rayyan Al-Shawaf reviews Shalom Auslander’s novel Hope: A Tragedy for Truthdig.

Jan Alexander reviews Linda Urbach’s novel Madame Bovary’s Daughter for the New World Review.

Joseph Peschel reviews Megan Mayhew Bergman’s debut story collection, Birds of Lesser Paradise, for the Boston Globe.

Your reviews and recommendations help seed these roundups: If you’re an NBCC member with a review you’d like considered for inclusion, please email You can also get our attention by using the Twitter hashtag #nbcc, posting on the wall of our Facebook page, or joining our members-only LinkedIn group.