On November 9th, we went to Prince Edward County to safely celebrate the Scotiabank Giller Prize ceremony with Shani Mootoo. Thank you to Carlyn and the staff of Oeno Gallery for organizing a safe and socially distanced gathering so that Shani’s friends and loved ones in her bubble could come together to fete her and her shortlisted novel, Polar Vortex, a book that we at Book*hug are so very proud to have published.
While we were of course rooting for Shani, we are happy that Souvankham Thammavongsa, who we have known and admired and been fans of for so long, won for her debut work of fiction, How to Pronounce Knife. Congrats to Sou and everyone at McClelland and Stewart. Congrats as well to the other wonderful finalists, Gil Adamson (Ridgerunner, House of Anansi Press), David Bergen (Here the Dark, Biblioasis), and Emily St. John Mandel (The Glass Hotel, HarperCollins Canada) and to their equally wonderful publishers. A special thank you to Don, the very kind CBC camera person, who worked so hard to make Shani comfortable throughout the night despite the fact that a camera and very bright lights were on her almost non-stop. Thanks as well to the entire CBC production team for their meticulous attention to every single detail in the lead-up to last night’s broadcast. A warm thank you to Daphna Rabinovitch and Elana Rabinovitch of the Giller Prize for their kindness and support these last couple of months and for all they do to support and celebrate Canadian literary fiction. And last but not least, a big thank you to Scotiabank, and to the readers of the Book*hug blog for your continued support of independent literary publishing!