Toronto’s Fours Seasons Hotel has been chosen as the venue of the 41st annual First Novel Award ceremony, which will be held on May 25.
Amazon.ca and the Walrus Foundation, a charitable non-profit organization, have announced the nominee for the award, which is given to the best first novel in English Language published the previous year by a citizen or resident of Canada.
Each of the finalists will be awarded with more than $6,000 in cash, while the winner, selected by a panel of judges, will get additional prizes worth over $40,000.
Though Choice for the Panel
The panel is composed of three well-known and acclaimed Canadian authors – Tanis MacDonald, Casey Plett, and Gurjinder Basran, who will have a little over a month to choose the winner.
The finalist for this year’s Amazon.ca First Novel Award are (listed in alphabetical order):
- White Elephant, Catherine Cooper
- Accordéon, Kaie Kellough
- So Much Love, Rebecca Rosenblum
- Mysterious Fragrance of the Yellow Mountains, Yasuko Thanh
- The Break, Katherena Vermette
Tanis MacDonald, the head judge, said it was a pleasure to be a part of this year’s competition. She added all six books deserved to receive the award because of their great range of styles and a common exceptional reach.
A Long History
Awarded since 1976, formerly the Books in Canada First Novel Award, the award launched some Canada’s famous novelist. The long list of winner include Michael Ondaatje, Joan Barfoot, Joy Kogawa, W.P. Kinsella, Nino Ricci, Rohinton Mistry, Shyam Selvadurai, Anne Michaels, Margaret Gibson, André Alexis, Eva Stachniak, Michael Redhill, Mary Lawson, Michel Basilières, Colin McAdam, Joseph Boyden, Madeleine Thien, Gil Adamson , Joan Thomas, Jessica Gran, Eleanor Catton, David Bezmozgis, Anakana Schofield, and Wayne Grady.
As the Vice President of Amazon.ca, Alexandre Gagnon, said, the First Novel Award had a long history of attracting gifted novelist, recognizing their talent and supporting their writing. He added this year was no exception when it comes to the quality of shortlisted novels.