Books

Sydney Smith, Julie Flett, Cary Fagan shortlisted for the Sheila Barry Best Canadian Picturebook of the Year

The prize, created in honour of the late Groundwood Books publisher and editor, celebrates the best picture book by a Canadian writer published in the previous year.
Sydney Smith, Julie Flett and Cary Fagan are finalists for the inaugural Sheila Barry Best Canada Picturebook of the Year Award. (The Canadian Press/Patrick Doyle, Steve Farmer, Mark Raynes Roberts)

Sydney Smith, Julie Flett and Cary Fagan are among the 10 finalists for the first annual Sheila Barry Best Canada Picturebook of the Year Award.

The prize, created in honour of the late Sheila Barry, who was the publisher and an editor for Toronto-based children's publisher Groundwood Books, celebrates the best picture book by a Canadian writer, published in the previous year.

Smith, Flett and Fagan are recognized for their books Small in the City, Birdsong and King Mouse.

Smith's Small in the City is about a young boy exploring the downtown of a city after having stepped off a streetcar on a snowy day. On his journey, the boy discovers shortcuts and friendly faces, all the while trying to find his way home. 

The picture book, which won the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustration, is the first book that the Halifax-based writer and illustrator has both illustrated and written.

Birdsong by Flett follows a lonely girl who becomes friends with her new neighbour, an elderly woman. Together, they watch the seasons change, but as they both grow older, the young girl learns to cope with her friend's declining health.

The Cree-Metis author and illustrator's picture book was shortlisted for the Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustration in 2019.

Written by Fagan, a Toronto-based novelist and children's book author, with illustrations by Dena Seiferling, King Mouse is a fable about friendship and sharing. It features a mouse king who learns more about kindness when his animal subjects find crowns of their own.

King Mouse was also a finalist for the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustration.

The winner and three books of honour will be announced on Sept. 7, 2020.

The full shortlist is below.

Add some “good” to your morning and evening.

A variety of newsletters you'll love, delivered straight to you.

Sign up now

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?

now