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The books critics liked best in 2008

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Last night in a ceremony in New York, the National Book Critics Circle announced the winners of their 2008 book awards. These were:

Best fiction: Roberto Bolano for "2666" (no surprise here – this posthumously published mystery by Chilean novelist Bolano topped many "best of 2008" lists)

Best fiction winner: New York Times correspondent Dexter Filkins for "The Forever War," based on his reporting from Iraq (reviewed in the Monitor on 10/28/08)

Best criticism: Seth Lerer for "Children's Literature: A Reader's History from Aesop to Harry Potter" (in accepting his award Lerer said his speech gave a new meaning to the need to "thank the little people")

Best biography: Patrick French for "The World Is What It Is: The Authorized Biography of V.S. Naipaul"

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