The finalists for the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for fiction
Here are the finalists for the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for fiction.
The Governor General's Literary Awards are one of Canada's oldest and most prestigious prizes.
The awards, administered by the Canada Council for the Arts, are given in seven English-language categories: fiction, nonfiction, poetry, young people's literature — text, young people's literature — illustration, drama and translation. Seven French-language awards are also given out in the same categories.
Each winner will receive $25,000. The winners will be announced on Oct. 29, 2019.
Marianne Micros's collection of short fiction, Eye, draws from old world magic — particularly ancient Greece — to tell stories of nymphs, changelings and wise women through the ages. The evil eye plays a role in many of these stories, preying on the characters' relationships and fears.
Micros is the author of poetry and short fiction. She used to teach English at the University of Guelph.
In 1956, five evangelical Christian missionaries were killed when they ventured into the Ecuador rainforest to convert the Waorani, a group of Indigenous people who had no previous contact with the outside world. Five Wives fictionalizes the story of the women left to deal with the fall-out of their husbands' actions and deaths, which were widely covered by the media.
Joan Thomas is the author of three previous novels. Her novel The Opening Sky was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction in 2014.
Late Breaking, a linked collection of short stories, is based on the art of Alex Colville. The collection centres on characters occupying Sackville, N.B., where Colville lived and taught for many years. The characters that Miller portrays are getting older and contending with a world that focuses predominantly on youth.
Miller's previous books include the short story collections The Other Voice and All Saints, which was a finalist for the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize in 2014.
In The Innocents, a young brother and sister live in isolation in Newfoundland, surviving alone on the bits of knowledge their parents left behind. Their loyalty to one another is the reason they are able to persist through storms and illness, but their relationship is tested as they grow older.
The Student by Cary Fagan opens in 1957 as an ambitious young woman named Miriam Moscowitz enters her final year of university. Miriam is drawn into an affair with a free-spirited American student, who leaves her to join the civil rights movement in the U.S. Nearly five decades later, Miriam helps with her son's wedding preparations and finds herself thinking about the past.
Fagan is the author of six novels, three short story collections and several children's books. He is nominated twice for a Govenor General's Literary Award in 2019. His children's book King Mouse, illustrated by Dena Seiferling, is nominated for a Governor General's Literary award for children's literature — illustration.