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New B.C. scholarly book prize shortlist announced

Sandra Djwa didn’t win the Charles Taylor Prize for non-fiction, but a week later her book, Journey With No Maps: A Life of P.K. Page (McGill-Queen’s University Press), is up for another award,  alongside Derek Hayes’ British Columbia: A New Historical Atlas (Douglas & McIntyre) and Jim McDowell’s Father August Brabant: Saviour or Scourge? (Ronsdale Press). The three titles have been shortlisted for the new Basil Stuart-Stubbs Prize for Outstanding Scholarly Book on British Columbia.

Sponsored by the UBC Library and BC Bookworld, the prize was established in memory of former UBC librarian and School of Library, Archival and Information Studies director Basil Stuart-Stubbs, who passed away last year. The inaugural prize recognizes the best scholarly book by a Canadian author on a subject related to British Columbia.

Funds are being raised largely through contributions from supporters of UBC Library, including Basil’s family, friends and former colleagues, UBC communications manager Glenn Drexhage said in an email Tuesday. UBC is also looking for community partners to help organize the event and raise awareness of the project.

Calls for submissions were sent out to publishers last fall and 20 titles were received for consideration, according to jury member and UBC liaison librarian Brenda Peterson. Along with Peterson, the jury consists of BC Bookworld publisher Alan Twigg, and two historians and UBC professors emeritus, Roderick Barman and Jean Barman.

The prize is worth $1,000 and will be announced in April. The award will be presented at a reception will be held on May 7 in UBC’s Irving K. Barber Learning Centre.