The City of Toronto, together with the Toronto Public Library, today named the five finalists for the 2012 Toronto Book Awards. Established by Toronto City Council in 1974, the Toronto Book Awards honour authors of books of literary or artistic merit that are evocative of Toronto.
The finalists are:
• Dave Bidini for his biography, Writing Gordon Lightfoot: The Man, the Music, and the World in 1972, published by McClelland & Stewart
• Andrew J. Borkowski for his collection of short stories, Copernicus Avenue, published by Cormorant Books Inc.
• Farzana Doctor for her novel, Six Metres of Pavement, published by Dundurn Press
• Michele Landsberg for her collection of columns, Writing the Revolution, published by Second Story Press
• Suzanne Robertson, for her collection of poetry, Paramita, Little Black, published by Guernica Editions
This year marks the 38th anniversary of the Toronto Book Awards. The annual awards offer $15,000 in prize money. Each finalist will receive $1,000 and the winning author receives the remaining prize money.
“I want to congratulate this year’s Toronto Book Awards finalists” said Mayor Rob Ford. “These wonderful books truly reflect the diverse and unique aspects of our great city.”
“The Toronto Book Awards shortlist is always such an interesting snapshot of our city,” said City Librarian Jane Pyper. “And this year’s mix of genres – poetry, essays, biography, short stories and a novel – also shows what a range of fine writers Toronto boasts. Congratulations to all the finalists.”
The City of Toronto and the Toronto Public Library are inviting Torontonians to “get a new read on Toronto” with many opportunities for the community to embrace and explore this year’s shortlisted books.
The shortlisted authors will read from their books at The Word On The Street book and magazine fair. The event takes place on Sunday, September 23 in the City of Toronto tent at Queen’s Park North. This year, five authors from Diaspora Dialogues will join the program. Diaspora Dialogues supports writing that reflects Toronto’s diverse artistic and literary culture.
The shortlisted authors will also do a reading at the Toronto Public Library’s Yorkville Branch at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, October 3. The winner of the 2012 Toronto Book Awards will be announced on Thursday, October 11 at the Bram and Bluma Appel Salon at the Toronto Reference Library. Members of the public are encouraged to come out and enjoy at the evening awards celebration, hosted by CBC Radio’s Matt Galloway.
The 2012 Toronto Book Awards Committee is made up of volunteer members Michael Booth, Julia Chan, Tina Edan, Diane Spivak, and Kristine Thornley. For more information about the awards, reading events and what the jury members said about the shortlisted books, visit http://www.toronto.ca/book_awards.
Toronto Public Library is the world’s busiest urban public library system. Every year, more than 19 million people visit our branches in neighbourhoods across the city and borrow over 33 million items. To learn more about Toronto Public Library, visit our website at http://www.torontopubliclibrary.ca or call Answerline at 416-393-7131. For all the latest buzz about the library follow us on Twitter @torontolibrary.