Bidart, Damrosch win National Book Critics Circle awards

Cambridge poet Frank Bidart and Harvard professor Leo Damrosch were among the winners at the National Book Critics Circle awards for the 2013 publishing year. The awards were announced Thursday at a ceremony at the New School in New York. Bidart won the poetry prize for “Metaphysical Dog,” and Damrosch will come home with the award in the biography category for “Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World.” Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s radiant novel “Americanah” won for fiction and Sheri Fink’s “Five Days at Memorial,” a gripping account of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, was recognized in the nonfiction category. Other winners included Amy Wilentz, whose latest work on Haiti, “Farewell, Fred Voodoo,” earned the prize for autobiography; Franco Moretti, whose “Distant Reading” won in the criticism category; and newcomer Anthony Marra, whose novel “A Constellation of Vital Phenomena” won the inaugural John Leonard Prize for outstanding work in any genre. Cambridge resident Katherine Powers was honored for the previously announced win for the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing.

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