12 Apr

Announcing the 2023 Atlantic Book Award Nominees  

Hold onto your hats, book lovers, the Atlantic Book Awards are back, showcasing the finest in Atlantic Canadian writing and publishing. 

The books shortlisted for the 2023 Atlantic Book Awards are a testament to the incredible diversity and richness of Atlantic Canadian literature, with everything from poetry to scholarly writing, books for young adults, short stories, adult fiction, and three titles in contention to be named the best Atlantic-published book. 

The winners of the six Atlantic Book Awards will be revealed at the Atlantic Book Awards Gala at Halifax Central Library on Wednesday, June 7. Here are the nominees: 

Alistair MacLeod Prize for Short Fiction

Meghan Rose Allen, The Summer the School Burned Down (Indie-published)
Bridget Canning, No One Knows About Us (Breakwater Books)
Elaine McCluskey, Rafael Has Pretty Eyes (Goose Lane Editions)

Ann Connor Brimer Award for Atlantic Canadian Children’s Literature 

Nicola Davison, Decoding Dot Grey (Nimbus Publishing)
Vicki Grant, Tell Me When You Feel Something (Penguin Random House)
Jo Treggiari, Heartbreak Homes (Nimbus Publishing)

APMA Best Atlantic-Published Book Award

Goose Lane Editions with the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Wabanaki Modern / Wabanaki Kiskukewey / Wabanaki Moderne by Emma Hassencahl-Perley & John Leroux 
Flanker Press, Operation Masonic by Helen C. Escott
Boulder Books, Food, Culture, Place: Stories, Traditions, and Recipes of Newfoundland by Lori McCarthy and Marsha Tulk

Atlantic Book Award for Scholarly Writing

Carol Lynne D’Arcangelis, The Solidarity Encounter: Women, Activism, and Creating Non-Colonizing Relations (UBC Press) 
Mark David Turner, Inuit TakugatsaliuKatiget / On Inuit Cinema (Memorial University Press)
Elizabeth Yeoman, Exactly What I Said: Translating Words and Worlds (University of Manitoba Press)

J. M. Abraham Atlantic Poetry Award 

Luke Hathaway, The Affirmations (Biblioasis)
Nanci Lee, Hsin (Brick Books) 
Annick MacAskill, Shadow Blight (Gaspereau Press)

Thomas Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award

K. R. Byggdin, Wonder World (Enfield & Wizenty) 
Bobbi French, The Good Women of Safe Harbour (HarperCollins) 
Lisa Moore, This Is How We Love (House of Anansi) 

Nine of the eighteen nominations are for books published by Atlantic publishers. New Brunswick’s Goose Lane Editions and Nova Scotia’s Nimbus Publishing have two nominations each. Other regional publishers are Breakwater Books, Boulder Books, and Flanker Press, all based in Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia’s Gaspereau Press.

Nominee Meghan Rose Allen (The Summer the School Burned Down) is also nominated for a New Brunswick Book Award. The winners of the NBBAs will be revealed at an awards ceremony at Lily Lake Pavillion in Saint John on Saturday, June 3. 

Nominees Bobbi French (The Good Women of Safe Harbour), Nanci Lee (Hsin), and Jo Treggiari (Heartbreak Homes) are all also nominated for Nova Scotia Book Awards. Winners of the NSBAs will be revealed at a gala ceremony at Brightwood Golf & Country Club in Dartmouth on Monday, June 5. 

The Nova Scotia Book Awards and the New Brunswick Book Awards take place during the Atlantic Book Festival, along with a range of online and in-person events featuring authors shortlisted for awards in the week leading up to the Atlantic Book Awards Gala.

On Wednesday, June 7, the six Atlantic book awards, including one of Canada’s biggest book prizes, the Thomas Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award valued at $30,000, will be presented along with the Atlantic Legacy Award, honouring an individual who has made an extraordinary contribution to the advancement and encouragement of the literary arts in Atlantic Canada.

The 2023 Atlantic Book Awards Gala takes place at Paul O’Regan Hall in Halifax Central Library at 7:00 p.m. and will be hosted by journalist, author, and editor Lindsay Ruck (Amazing Black Atlantic Canadians). Tickets ($20) are available online now: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/atlantic-book-awards-tickets-609529317597

The awards ceremony will also be live-streamed so book lovers across the region and beyond can join in the celebration. 

The Atlantic Book Awards Society extends a big congratulations to this year’s nominees. Visit www.atlanticbookawards.ca and find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, where you can stay up-to-date on the Atlantic Book Awards Festival events. 

05 Apr

Shortlists announced for 2023 Nova Scotia Book Awards

Thirteen Nova Scotian authors are in the running for the five Nova Scotia Book Awards being handed out this year. The winners of the awards, covering poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, will be revealed at a gala ceremony at Brightwood Golf & Country Club on Monday, June 5. This is the second year for the Nova Scotia Book Awards, which bring together all the book awards that are open only to authors who were born in or reside in Nova Scotia. These include the Dartmouth Book Awards and awards administered by the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia. Here is this year’s slate of awards and the three titles shortlisted for each:

Dartmouth Book Award for Fiction
Bobbi French, The Good Women of Safe Harbour (HarperCollins)
Alexander MacLeod, Animal Person (McClelland & Stewart)
Jo Treggiari, Heartbreak Homes (Nimbus Publishing)

Evelyn Richardson Nonfiction Award
Kate Beaton, Ducks (Drawn & Quarterly)
El Jones, Abolitionist Intimacies (Fernwood Publishing)
Kim Pittaway & Toufah Jallow, Toufah: The Woman Who Inspired an African #MeToo Movement (Penguin Random House)

George Borden Writing for Change Award
El Jones, Abolitionist Intimacies (Fernwood Publishing)
Elder Sister Dorothy Moore, A Journey of Love and Hope (Nimbus Publishing)
Wanda Thomas Bernard, A Child of East Preston (Delmore “Buddy” Daye Learning Institute)

Margaret and John Savage First Book Award for Nonfiction
Kate Beaton, Ducks: Two Years in the Oil Sands (Drawn & Quarterly)
Martha Paynter, Abolition to Abortion (Fernwood Publishing)
Mandy Rennehan, The Blue Collar CEO (HarperCollins)

Maxine Tynes Nova Scotia Poetry Award
Sylvia D. Hamilton, Tender (Gaspereau Press)
Sue Goyette, Monoculture (Gaspereau Press)
Nanci Lee, Hsin (Brick Books)

Two authors are double nominees: Halifax activist, journalist, and poet El Jones for her book Abolitionist Intimacies, and Cape Breton’s Kate Beaton, whose nominated title, Ducks, won Canada Reads last week.

The 2023 Nova Scotia Book Awards gala will be hosted by Dartmouth author Charlene Carr, whose latest novel, Hold My Girl, was named by the Globe and Mail as one of “The top 30 Canadian books to read in 2023” and has been released internationally. Carr says, “I’m incredibly pleased to host this year’s event, which celebrates a fantastic and diverse group of Nova Scotian writers and books.”

The gala will be held June 5 at Brightwood Golf & Country Club in Dartmouth; tickets are $10 and are available now through Eventbrite:


The Nova Scotia Book Awards gala is part of the Atlantic Book Awards Festival, running the first week of June.