The role of political prisoners in Canada-China relations, the life of a late feminist and political hero, and the difficulty of changing government institutions from the inside are among the topics of the books shortlisted for the Writers’ Trust of Canada $25,000 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing. The prize is awarded annually to a book of literary merit that has the potential to shape Canadians’ thinking on political life. Previous winners have included Tanya Talaga, Kamal Al-Solaylee, and last year’’s winner, Ronald J. Deibert.
The prize will be awarded at this year’s Politics and the Pen gala in Ottawa on May 17.
The shortlisted titles are:
- The Two Michaels: Innocent Canadian Captives and High Stakes Espionage in the US-China Cyber War, by Mike Blanchfield and Fen Osler Hampson (Sutherland House)
- China Unbound: A New World Disorder, by Joanna Chiu (House of Anansi Press)
- Flora!: A Woman in a Man’s World, by Flora MacDonald and Geoffrey Stevens (McGill-Queen’s University Press)
- The Next Age of Uncertainty: How the World Can Adapt to a Riskier Future, by Stephen Poloz (Allen Lane Canada)
- “Indian” in the Cabinet: Speaking Truth to Power, by Jody Wilson-Raybould (HarperCollins Canada)
A jury comprised of Ottawa journalist Charelle Evelyn, author and past prize finalist Jacques Poitras, and past Conservative Party of Canada deputy leader Lisa Raitt chose the five shortlisted titles from 28 books submitted by 19 publishers.