Entertainment

Book on Afghan war wins Canadian prize for political writing

A book about how Canada was drawn into the war in Afghanistan, The Unexpected War: Canada in Kandahar has won the Shaughnessy Cohen prize for political writing.

A book about how Canada was drawn into the war in Afghanistan, The Unexpected War: Canada in Kandahar, has won the Shaughnessy Cohen prize for political writing.

Authors Janice Gross Stein of Toronto and Eugene Lang of Ottawa were awarded the $15,000 prize at the Politics and the Pen gala Wednesday in Ottawa.

"The Unexpected War takes us inside the doors of our federal government to tell an untold story — the genesis of Canada's participation in the war in Afghanistan," the jury said in its citation.

Historian Robert Bothwell, Globe and Mail columnist Lawrence Martin and freelance writer and broadcaster Brigitte Pellerin were on this year's jury.

The four other finalists for the award each receive $2,000. They are:

  • Clive Doucet of Ottawa for Urban Meltdown: Cities, Climate Change and Politics as Usual.
  • Richard Gwyn of Toronto for John A: The Man Who Made Us; The Life and Times of John A. Macdonald, Volume One: 1815-1867.
  • David E. Smith of Regina for The People's House of Commons: Theories of Democracy in Contention.
  • Andrea Mandel-Campbell of Toronto for Why Mexicans Don't Drink Molson.

The award, named for an outspoken Windsor, Ont., MP who died in 1998, is administered by the Writers Trust of Canada.

now