The Canadian Authors Association presented its annual literary awards on June 18 during the inaugural Canadian Writers’ Summit in Toronto.
Nino Ricci won in the fiction category for Sleep (Doubleday Canada), the story of a man whose life comes undone as he attempts to cure his sleep disorder.
B.C. writer Joe Denham won the poetry award for Regeneration Machine (Nightwood Editions), a book-length poem that the judge, in a press release, called “a wave-like poem of impressive integrity.”
Debra Komar’s examination of the 1842 murder of the Hudson’s Bay Company’a chief trader, The Bastard of Fort Stikine: The Hudson’s Bay Company and the Murder of John McLoughlin Jr. (Goose Lane Editions), won in the history category for its “new insights” into the country’s history and fur trade. Komar already received a P.E.I. Book Award and Jeanne Clarke Memorial Local History Award for the title.
Vancouver-based Kayla Czaga won the emerging writer award for her debut poetry collection, For Your Safety Please Hold On (Nightwood Editions), written in a style that the judge called “controlled yet lucid … refreshingly objective and empathetic.”
And the Fred Kerner Award, presented to a CAA member for best book overall, went to Montrealer Caroline Vu for Palawan Story (Deux Voiliers Publishing), which follows a young girl who escapes Vietnam on a fishing boat headed for a refugee camp in the Phillippines, but ends up an orphan in America by mistake.
The CAA Awards began their modern incarnation in 1975, and are decided upon by a panels comprised of other authors.