Australian Book Industry Awards 2019 Shortlist

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The Australian Publishers Association is delighted to announce the shortlist for the 2019 Australia Book Industry Awards. From this shortlist, The Category Winners and the Overall ‘Book of the Year’ Winner will be announced at the premier event on the Australian book industry calendar – The ABIA Awards night – to be held on Thursday 2 May 2019, right in the middle of the Sydney Writers’ Festival.

From the ABIA Media Release

Celebrating the achievements of authors, publishers, editors, illustrators, designers, publicists and marketers, this award night is The Oscars for the bookish. The ABIAs showcase the collaborative efforts of authors and industry professionals who bring quality books to Australian to readers, and international markets.

The red carpet event will be hosted by Casey Bennetto in the Grand Ballroom of Sydney’s International Convention Centre.

On Thursday 18 April 2019 the Australian Publishers Association will announce the following awards: the Lloyd O’Neill Hall of Fame Award which recognises outstanding service to the Australian Book Industry by an individual from within its ranks; the Rising Star Award, which recognises emerging talent in the Australian publishing industry; and the Pixie O’Harris Award for consistent contribution to children’s literature.

The 2019 shortlist includes some of the biggest names in the Australian book industry (which publishes over 7,000 new books annually) and this year’s list is a top-shelf showcase of high profile authors and amazing new talent.

The ABIA Voting Academy is made up of over 250 representatives from across the bookselling and publishing industry as well as additional specialist experts. Following the announcement of the shortlist a series of expert panels decide on the winner in each category.

ABIA 2019 Book Award Shortlist

Biography Book of the Year

  • Back, After the Break, Osher Günsberg (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • Challenge Accepted!, Celeste Barber (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • Eggshell Skull, Bri Lee (Allen & Unwin)
  • Johnathan Thurston: The Autobiography, Johnathan Thurston, with James Phelps (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • Teacher, Gabbie Stroud (Allen & Unwin)

General Fiction Book of the Year

  • Scrublands, Chris Hammer (Allen & Unwin)
  • The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart, Holly Ringland (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • The Nowhere Child, Christian White (Affirm Press)
  • The Rúin, Dervla McTiernan (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz, Heather Morris (Echo Publishing)

General Non-fiction Book of the Year

  • Any Ordinary Day, Leigh Sales (Penguin Random House Australia)
  • Boys Will Be Boys, Clementine Ford (Allen & Unwin)
  • Dear Santa, Samuel Johnson (Hachette Australia)
  • No Friend But the Mountains: Writing from Manus Prison, Behrouz Boochani, Omid Tofighian (translator) (Pan Macmillan Australia)
  • Welcome to Country: A Travel Guide to Indigenous Australia, Marcia Langton (Hardie Grant Publishing)

Illustrated Book of the Year

  • A Painted Landscape: Across Australia from Bush to Coast, Amber Creswell Bell (Thames & Hudson Australia)
  • Family: New vegetable classics to comfort and nourish, Hetty McKinnon (Pan Macmillan Australia)
  • Mirka & Georges, Lesley Harding & Kendrah Morgan (Melbourne University Publishing)
  • Special Guest, Annabel Crabb and Wendy Sharpe (Murdoch Books)
  • The Cook’s Apprentice, Stephanie Alexander (Penguin Random House Australia)

 International Book of the Year

  • Becoming, Michelle Obama (Penguin Random House Australia)
  • CIRCE, Madeline Miller (Bloomsbury Publishing)
  • Less, Andrew Sean Greer (Hachette Australia)
  • Lost Connections, Johann Hari (Bloomsbury Publishing)
  • Ottolenghi SIMPLE, Yotam Ottolenghi (Penguin Random House Australia)

Literary Fiction Book of the Year

  • Boy Swallows Universe, Trent Dalton (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • Bridge of Clay, Markus Zusak (Pan Macmillan Australia)
  • Shell, Kristina Olsson (Simon & Schuster Australia)
  • The Shepherd’s Hut, Tim Winton (Penguin Random House Australia)
  • Too Much Lip, Melissa Lucashenko (The University of Queensland Press)

 Small Publishers’ Adult Book of the Year

  • A Superior Spectre, Angela Meyer (Ventura Press)
  • Blakwork, Alison Whittaker (Magabala Books)
  • Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia, Dr Anita Heiss (ed.) (Black Inc Books)
  • The Bookshop of the Broken Hearted, Robert Hillman (Text Publishing)
  • The Geography of Friendship, Sally Piper (The University of Queensland Press)

Small Publishers’ Children’s Book of the Year

  • Black Cockatoo, Carl Merrison and Hakea Hustler (Magabala Books)
  • I Had Such Friends, Meg Gatland-Veness (Pantera Press)
  • Rhyme Cordial, Antonia Pesenti (Scribble Kids’ Books)
  • The Extremely Weird Thing that Happened in Huggabie Falls, Adam Cece (illustrated by Andrew Weldon) (Text Publishing)
  • Whisper, Lynette Noni (Pantera Press)

The Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year

  • Boy Swallows Universe, Trent Dalton (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • The Nowhere Child,  Christian White (Affirm Press)
  • Eggshell Skull, Bri Lee (Allen & Unwin)
  • The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart, Holly Ringland (HarperCollins Publishers)
  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz, Heather Morris (Echo Publishing)

 Book of the Year for Older Children (ages 13+)

  • Amelia Westlake, Erin Gough (Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Catching Teller Crow, Ambelin Kwaymullina and Ezekiel Kwaymullina (Allen & Unwin)
  • Hive, A.J. Betts (Pan Macmillan)
  • Jane Doe and the Cradle of All Worlds, Jeremy Lachlan (Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Small Spaces, Sarah Epstein (Walker Books)

 Book of the Year for Younger Children (ages 7-13)

  • Lenny’s Book of Everything, Karen Foxlee (Allen & Unwin)
  • Real Pigeons Fight Crime, Andrew McDonald & Ben Wood (Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • The 104-Storey Treehouse, Andy Griffiths, Terry Denton (Pan Macmillan Australia)
  • The Bad Guys Episode 7: Do-You-Think-He-Saurus?!, Aaron Blabey (Scholastic Australia)
  • Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow: Nevermoor 2,  Jessica Townsend (Hachette Australia)

Children’s Picture Book of the Year (ages 0-6)

  • All the Ways to be Smart, Davina Bell and Allison Colpoys (Scribble Kids’ Books)
  • Cicada, Shaun Tan (Hachette Australia)
  • Claris: The Chicest Mouse in Paris, Megan Hess (Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Macca the Alpaca, Matt Cosgrove (Scholastic Australia)
  • Pig the Grub, Aaron Blabey (Scholastic Australia)

ABIA 2019 Audiobook Award Shortlist

  • Boy Swallows Universe, Trent Dalton, Narrator Stig Weymss (HarperCollins, HarperAudio)
  • Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia, ed. Anita Heiss, Narrators Gregory J Fryer, Tamala Shelton, Lisa Maza, Tony Briggs, Hunter Page-Lochard, Shari Sebbens (Wavesound)
  • The Clockmaker’s Daughter, Kate Morton, Narrator Joanne Froggatt (Bolinda)
  • The Lost Man, Jane Harper, Narrator Steve Shanahan (Wavesound)
  • The Trauma Cleaner, Sarah Krasnostein, Narrator Rachael Tidd (Audible)

Rising Star of the Year

  • Alice Wood (HarperCollins)
  • Catriona Murdie (Penguin Random House)
  • Ella Chapman (Hachette)
  • Mark Campbell (HarperCollins)

For more information and tickets see the ABIA Awards website.

Congratulations and good luck to all who made the Shortlist.


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