Mona Awad was awarded this year’s $40,000 Amazon.ca First Novel Award for her book 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl, at a ceremony in Toronto on May 26. The book, published by Penguin Canada, is the story of a teen girl growing up with body image issues in the “suburban hell” of Mississauga, Ontario.
Awad was born in Montreal and has published work in The Walrus (which co-presented this year’s award), Joyland, McSweeney’s, and the St. Petersburg Review.
The Amazon.ca First Novel Award recognizes outstanding literary achievement by first-time Canadian authors, and celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2016. This year’s finalists, each of whom received a $4,000 prize, included Elizabeth Philips for The Afterlife of Birds, Mark Giles for Seep, Judith McCormack for Backspring, Aaron Cully Drake for Do You Think This is Strange?, and Karim Alrawi for Book of Sands.