Watch the Scotiabank Giller Prize interviews with the 2020 longlisted authors
The Scotiabank Giller Prize held a monthly book club in 2020 and 2021, highlighting the 14 books from the 2020 longlist.
The interviews with the authors were streamed live online and replays are available to watch below.
The 2021 longlist will be announced on Sept. 8 at 10 a.m. ET.
How to Pronounce Knife is a collection of idiosyncratic and diverse stories, from a young man painting nails in a salon to a housewife learning English from soap operas. In describing the daily lives of immigrants, Souvankham Thammavongsa captures their hopes, disappointments, trauma and acts of defiance.
Souvankham Thammavongsa is a writer and poet. Her stories have won an O. Henry Award and appeared in Harper's, Granta, The Paris Review and NOON. She has published four books of poetry, including 2019's Cluster. CBC Books named Thammavongsa a writer to watch in 2020.
Ridgerunner is a novel about William Moreland, the notorious thief known as Ridgerunner, as he moves through the Rocky Mountains, determined to secure financial stability for his son. His son, Jack Boulton, is trapped in a life not of his own making. Semi-orphaned and under the care of a nun, Sister Beatrice, Jack has found himself in a secluded cabin in Alberta. Little does he know, his father is coming for him.
Gil Adamson is a writer and poet. Her first novel, The Outlander, won the Amazon.ca First Novel Award and was a Canada Reads finalist in 2009, when it was championed by Nicholas Campbell. She has published several volumes of poetry, including Primitive and Ashland.
Abandoning the city for the picturesque countryside, Priya and Alexandra attempt to give themselves a new lease on life in the novel Polar Vortex. That is, until Priya reveals that she is running from a fraught relationship with a friend who kept pursuing her: Prakash. After Priya feels safe enough to once again establish an online presence, Prakash communicates with her. Inexplicably, Priya invites Prakash to visit them.
Shani Mootoo is a writer and visual artist who has been longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. Her debut novel was 1997's Cereus Blooms at Night.
In Five Little Indians, Kenny, Lucy, Clara, Howie and Maisie were taken from their families and sent to a residential school when they were very small. Barely out of childhood, they are released and left to contend with the seedy world of eastside Vancouver. Fuelled by the trauma of their childhood, the five friends cross paths over the decades and struggle with the weight of their shared past.
In Consent, Sara becomes her intellectually disabled sister Mattie's caregiver after their mother dies. But when Sara returns home, she surprisingly finds Mattie married to her mother's handyman, Robert. Sara gets the marriage annulled, driving a wedge between herself and Mattie. When Robert re-enters their lives, Sara and Mattie get entangled with him and another set of sisters, twins Saskia and Jenny.
Annabelle Lyon is a writer from Vancouver. Her novel The Golden Mean won the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize, and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction. Her other books include the short story collection Oxygen, the novella collection The Best Thing for You and the young adult novels All-Season Edie and Encore Edie.
Indians on Vacation is about a couple named Bird and Mimi, who decide to travel through Europe after discovering postcards from Mimi's long-lost Uncle Leroy, who sent them while on his own European adventure almost 100 years earlier.
Thomas King is a Canadian-American writer of Cherokee and Greek ancestry. His books include Truth & Bright Water, The Inconvenient Indian, Green Grass, Running Water and The Back of the Turtle. He also writes the DreadfulWater mystery series.
One morning, Stacey wakes up to the police pounding on her door in All I Ask. They claim they are looking for "illegal digital material" and seize her phone and computer. Worried for her safety, Stacey bands together with her friends to seek a way to an authentic, unencumbered way of life.
Eva Crocker is a novelist and short story writer from Newfoundland. Her first book was the short story collection Barrelling Forward. CBC Books named Crocker a writer to watch in 2020.
In Here the Dark, David Bergen delivers short stories that explore faith, loss and complex moral ambiguities in a range of settings and scenarios. From Danang, Vietnam, to Honduras and the Canadian Prairies, the book offers narratives about place and heart.
David Bergen is a Canadian novelist and short story writer. In 2005, his novel The Time in Between won the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His other books include The Matter with Morris and Stranger in 2016. His novel The Age of Hope was defended by Ron MacLean on Canada Reads in 2013.
In this collection of stories, Dominoes at the Crossroads, Kaie Kellough navigates Canada's Caribbean diaspora, as the characters seek music and a connection to their past. Through a broad cast of characters — including jazz musicians, hitchhikers, suburbanites, student radicals, secret agents, historians and their fugitive slave ancestors — Kellough stretches the stories from Montreal's Old Port to the South American rainforests.
Kaie Kellough is a writer based in Montreal. His novel Accordéon was a finalist for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award in 2017. He is also the author of the poetry collection Magnetic Equator, which won the 2020 Griffin Poetry Prize.
In Watching You Without Me, the death of her mother sends Karen home to Nova Scotia. Her elder sister Kelli, born with a developmental disability, requires full-time care. Karen is quickly overwhelmed, regretting the distance she'd always put between herself and her family. She gratefully accepts help from Trevor, a support worker, who was close with her mother. Gradually, though, Trevor's true nature is revealed.
Lynn Coady is a short story writer and novelist originally from Nova Scotia. Her other books include the novels Strange Heaven, Saints of Big Harbour, Mean Boy and The Antagonist, and the short story collection Hellgoing, which won the 2013 Scotiabank Giller Prize.
Emily St. John Mandel's new book, The Glass Hotel, interweaves several complex narratives. Vincent is a bartender in a prestigious hotel on Vancouver Island. When the owner — Jonathan Alkaitis — passes Vincent his card, it becomes the beginning of their story together. Meanwhile, a hooded figure scrawls a cryptic note on a wall in the hotel, and a shipping executive for a company called Neptune-Avramidis — Leon Prevant — sees the note and is shaken. Thirteen years later, Vincent disappears from a Neptune-Avramidis ship.
Emily St. John Mandel is a New York-based Canadian writer. Her fourth novel, Station Eleven, was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award and won the 2015 Toronto Book Award.
Seth's Clyde Fans illustrates the quiet desperation of two brothers struggling to keep their family's increasingly irrelevant business afloat. As homes adopt air conditioning, selling oscillating fans proves challenging — and less than fulfilling — for Simon Matchard, who struggles to shake off his dutiful brother's criticism.
Seth, who hails from Guelph, Ont., has contributed to publications such as The New Yorker and New York Times Magazine. He has twice won the Doug Wright Award for best book.
Butter Honey Pig Bread is a novel about twin sisters Kehinde and Taiye, and their mother, Kambirinachi. Kambirinachi believes she was a spirit who was supposed to die as a small child. By staying alive, she is cursing her family — a fear that appears to come true when Kehinde experiences something that tears the family apart, and divides the twins for years. But when the three women connect years later, they must confront their past and find forgiveness.
Francesca Ekwuyasi is a writer, filmmaker and visual artist. Her writing has appeared in the Malahat Review, Guts and Brittle Paper, and she was longlisted for the 2019 Journey Prize. Butter Honey Pig Bread is her first book.
The Pull of the Stars, set in a war- and disease-ravaged Ireland during the 1918 Spanish flu outbreak, tells the story of three women — a nurse, a doctor and a volunteer helper — working on the front lines of the pandemic in an understaffed maternity ward of a hospital, where expectant mothers infected with the virus are quarantined. The timely tale explores how these women change each other's lives in unexpected ways, while witnessing loss and delivering new life.