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5 non-fiction 2011 National Book Award finalists

The 2011 National Book Award winners will be announced on Nov. 16. Which of these five books will be the winner of the award for non-fiction?

- Molly Driscoll, Monitor contributor

1. "The Convert: A Tale of Exile and Extremism," by Deborah Baker

Deborah Baker tells the story of Margaret Marcus, a Jewish woman from a middle-class New York suburb who, in the early 1960s, converted to Islam, took the name Maryam Jameelah, and went to live in Pakistan, choosing a life of exile. Monitor book editor Marjorie Kehe wrote that, "The life story of Maryam Jameelah seems to have alternately fascinated, disturbed, and unsettled Deborah Baker. It is guaranteed to do the same to her readers."

(Monitor review, 4/28/11)


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