The National Book Critics Circle Award

Each year, the National Book Critics Circle presents awards for the finest books published in English in six categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Biography, Autobiography, Poetry, and Criticism.

1987 Winners & Finalists

Fiction Winner

  • Philip Roth, The Counterlife (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)

Fiction Finalists

  • Jane Smiley, The Age of Grief (Knopf)
  • Toni Morrison, Beloved (Knopf)
  • Tom Wolfe, The Bonfire of the Vanities (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • Wallace Stegner, Crossing to Safety (Random House)

General Nonfiction Winner

  • Richard Rhodes, The Making of the Atomic Bomb (Simon & Schuster)

General Nonfiction Finalists

  • Randy Shilts, And the Band Played On: Politics, People and the AIDS Epidemic (St. Martin’s)
  • James Miller, Democracy Is in the Streets, (Simon & Schuster)
  • Charles Mee, The Genius of the People (Harper & Row)
  • Stephen Jay Gould, Time’s Arrow, Time’s Cycle (Harvard University)

Biography/Autobiography Winner

  • Donald Howard, Chaucer: His Life, His Work, His World (Dutton)

Biography/Autobiography Finalists

  • Annie Dillard, An American Childhood (Harper & Row)
  • Prudence Crowther, ed., Don’t Tread on Me: The Selected Letters of S.J. Perelman (Viking)
  • Paul Taylor, Private Domain (Knopf)
  • Arthur Miller, Timebends: A Life (Grove Press)

Poetry Winner

  • C.K. Williams, Flesh and Blood (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)

Poetry Finalists

  • John Ashbery, April Galleons (Viking)
  • Alan Shapiro, Happy Hour (University of Chicago)
  • May Swenson, In Other Words (Knopf)
  • Donald Justice, The Sunset Maker (Atheneum)

Criticism Winner

  • Edwin Denby, Dance Writings (Knopf)

Criticism Finalists

  • Robert Lowell, Collected Prose (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • Guy Davenport, Every Force Evolves a Form (North Point Press)
  • Arlene Croce, Sight Lines (Knopf)
  • Joseph Horowitz, Understanding Toscanini (Knopf)

Ivan Sandrof/NBCC Board Award Winner

  • Robert Giroux

Reviewer’s Citation Winner

  • Josh Rubins

Reviewer’s Citation Finalists

  • Mindy Aloff
  • William Logan
  • Jack Miles
  • Jonathan Penner
  • George Scialabba