We have a new reviewer! Yay! Christine Sweeton will be reviewing the 2011 shortlisted books for the Toronto Book Awards. The shortlist will be announced on Sept. 6, 2011, and all of the shortlisted authors will be appearing at the Toronto Book Awards Tent! This is Christine’s first post, where she reviews the history of the Toronto Book Awards. To learn more about Christine, click here.
I am looking forward to reviewing the 2011 Toronto Book Awards shortlist. Once this year’s shortlist is announced, I will start reading and posting reviews about them. The author’s will all be featured this year at The Word On The Street Toronto! In preparation for my reviews, I thought it would be nice to take a look back at The Toronto Book Awards over the years.
The Toronto Book Awards was established in 1974 to honour authors of books that are evocative of Toronto. Currently, a five-member jury reviews the entries and selects a shortlist of finalists that will be announced in early September. The winner will be announced in October. Finalists will be featured at readings hosted by the City of Toronto and the Toronto Public Library. Finalists are also featured each year at The Word On The Street! The award comes with money too! Each finalist receives $1,000 and the winning author receives around $10,000, depending on the number of finalists.
The list of previous winners is very impressive and includes authors like Margaret Atwood, Robertson Davies, and Glen Downie. Timothy Findley has received the honour twice, most recently in 1994 for Headhunter but also in 1978 for his chilling novel The Wars. If you are looking for a quick read as we await the announcement of this year’s shortlist, may I suggest The Wars. It is an amazing novel set during World War I that not only won a Toronto Book Award but also the 1977 Governor General’s Literary Award for fiction.