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Christopher Cheung (left) discusses his provocative new book about race and representation in Canadian media in this exclusive BCBookLook interview.” FULL STORY


Victoria Prizes shortlist announced

September 14th, 2016

One of the benefits of book awards, beyond serving as a good excuse for writers and supportive book folks to break bread, is they can introduce emerging authors such as Laura Trunkey who first received a Social Work degree before veering towards her MFA in Creative Writing through UBC’s Optional Residency program.

Now a freelance editor and an Artistic Associate of the Victoria Festival of Authors, she has written a children’s novel, The Incredibly Ordinary Danny Chandelier (Annick 2008) and had stories appear in Darwin’s Bastards: Astounding Tales from Tomorrow (D&M, 2010) and Pennies in My Pocket: Stories of My Brother (Brindle & Glass 2012).

The appearance of her first short fiction collection, Double Dutch (House of Anansi $19.95) hasn’t made her a household name yet either. But now the Victoria resident has been shortlisted for the $5,000 City of Victoria Butler Book Prize for Greater Victoria authors.

trunkey-laura-book-jacketAppropriately dubbed as weird and wonderful, Trunkey’s stories can delve into bizarre storylines: An elephant named Topsy is killed on Coney Island by Thomas Edison in 1903. Ronald Reagan’s body double falls in love with the first lady. A single mother believes her toddler is the reincarnation of a terrorist. A man grieves for his wife after a bear takes over her body. But other stories can be touching and realistic: A young deaf girl visits Niagara Falls before she goes blind.  9781770898776


Celebrating 13 years, the Victoria Book Prize Society is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2016 City of Victoria Butler Book Prize and the Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize.

The $5,000 City of Victoria Butler Book Prize is awarded to a Greater Victoria author for the best book published in the preceding year in the categories of fiction, non-fiction or poetry.

The five finalists are:

Dower, Tricia red jacket

Tricia Dower

Frances Backhouse – Once They Were Hats: In Search of the Mighty Beaver, non-fiction (ECW Press)
Tricia Dower – Becoming Lin, fiction (Caitlin Press)
Pauline Holdstock – The Hunter and the Wild Girl, fiction (Goose Lane)
Arleen Paré – He Leaves His Face in the Funeral Car, poetry (Caitlin Press)
Laura Trunkey – Double Dutch, fiction (House of Anansi)

The ninth annual $5,000 Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize is awarded to an author or illustrator for the
best children’s book published in the preceding year.

The three finalists are:

Dawn Green – In the Swish, ages 13+ (Red Deer Press)
Jenny Manzer – Save Me Kurt Cobain, ages 12+ (Delacorte Press)
Robin Stevenson – The Summer We Saved the Bees, ages 9+ (Orca Book Publishers)

Two independent juries comprised of representatives from the literary arts community adjudicated the
entries for literary merit.

The winners will be announced at the Awards Gala to be held on Wednesday, October 12 at 7:30 p.m. at the Union Club of British Columbia at 805 Gordon Street. Tickets are $20 and are available now at Bolen Books, Munro’s Books, Ivy’s Bookshop and the Victoria Book Prize Society by calling 250.595.8430.

Stevenson, Robin green shirt

Robin Stevenson

Founded in 2004, the City of Victoria Butler Book Prize is a partnership between the City of Victoria and Brian Butler of Butler Brothers Supplies.

Sponsored by Bolen Books, the Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize was founded in 2008.

Additional sponsors include the Union Club of British Columbia, Greater Victoria Public Library, Island Blue Print, Magnolia Hotel and Spa, Friesens Corporation and CBC Radio.

The Victoria Book Prize Society establishes policy and criteria for the prizes, administers the competition and appoints the juries. For more information: or

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