2012 City of Vancouver Book Award Shortlist

Since 1989, the annual City of Vancouver Book Award has been recognizing authors of excellence of any genre who contribute to the appreciation and understanding of Vancouver's history, unique character, or the achievements of its residents.

The $2,000 prize is funded by the City's Publishing Reserve, which was established in 1977 as a permanent legacy for Vancouver writers and publishers.

The winner of the 2012 City of Vancouver Book Award will be announced at the Mayor's Arts Awards.

Finalists John Mikhail Asfour and Elee Kraljii Gardiner, editors, V6A: Writing from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside (Arsenal Pulp Press)
This remarkable anthology, which grew out of the Thursdays Writing Collective at Carnegie Community Centre, shows the intellectually and culturally rich heart of the Downtown Eastside. Work by writers both known and new makes for a potent mix.

Finalist Claudia Cornwall, At the World's Edge: Curt Lang's Vancouver (Mother Tongue Publishing)
This biography of Curt Lang reveals, with precision and suspense, how he packed his too-short life with pursuits ranging from poetry and painting to log salvage, boat building, and software development. His story parallels Vancouver's own mid-twentieth-century evolution.

Finalist Ali Kazimi, Undesirables: White Canada & the Komagata Maru (Douglas & McIntyre)
In this splendidly illustrated and designed book, Ali Kazimi enlarges our understanding of the months-long Komagata Maru standoff, where racist immigration policies were challenged and transformed when more than 350 South Asian people were turned away from Vancouver's shores.

Finalist Jen Sookfong Lee, The Better Mother (Random House Canada)
This atmospheric novel follows Danny Lim, a gay photographer from Chinatown, and Valerie Nealy, an older burlesque artist who grew up in abject poverty on River Road. Vancouver, in its many moods and guises, is witness to the blossoming of their unlikely friendship.

Finalist WH New, YVR (Oolichan Books)
The city of Vancouver reverberates with life as Bill New explores it in verse. His powerful poems capture history, geography, politics, and more. In his hands, even the place names of city parks thrive with rhythm.

2012 City of Vancouver Book Award jury
Five short-listed titles were chosen by an independent jury, and from this list, the jury selected the winner. The jury members included:
    •    Jane Bouey, former People's Co-Op bookseller
    •    David Chariandy, author and educator
    •    Rebecca Wigod, retired Vancouver Sun Books Editor

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