NZ Book Trade Industry Awards: A&U named Publisher of the Year
The 2016 New Zealand Book Trade Industry Awards were announced at the Booksellers NZ Conference in Auckland on 2 July.
Time Out Bookstore in Mt Eden was named Bookseller of the Year due in part to its ‘whole-hearted backing’ of local author Ted Dawe, whose 2013 YA novel Into the River was placed under an interim ban in September 2015 following complaints about its portrayal of teenagers having sex and taking drugs.
Judge and NZ Book Council CEO Catriona Ferguson said Time Out’s banned book display ‘became one of the most enduring images of New Zealand bookselling in 2015’. ‘Time Out Bookstore nudged ahead of the other finalists with its focus on a lively digital programme, headline-grabbing responses to issues in the book world, and an enthusiasm for embracing and engaging readers from all areas of the community,’ said Ferguson.
The Publisher of the Year award went to Allen & Unwin for its ‘dedication to New Zealand publishing in a difficult time’. ‘These publishers have plans and vision for the future,’ said judge and bookseller Helen Parsons. ‘They are sound. And they continue to diversify … they are producing very fine books.’
Other bookseller award winners were the Women’s Bookshop in Ponsonby, which won the Marketing Strategy of the Year for its ‘fantastic’ NZ Bookshop Day event; and Rachel Eadie from Scorpio Books in Christchurch, who won the Young Book Retailer of the Year for her ‘enthusiasm and careful consideration of books’.
Louise Crisp from Penguin Random House NZ was named Sales Representative of the Year for ‘having aplomb, commitment, engagement, helpfulness, [and] a sense of humour’; while HarperCollins NZ won Marketing Strategy of the Year for its ‘exceptionally successful’ promotion of They Let Me Write a Book by Jamie Curry, with a campaign that included a ‘magic selfie machine’ at each of the book’s launches, with 438 photos generating over 16 million post views.
The NZ Book Industry Special Award went to Bridget Williams Books for its ‘consistent publication of splendid books which beautifully represent New Zealand culture’. Paul Greenberg from Greene Phoenix Marketing was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award for his ‘tireless championing, through ill health and well, of his publishers’ books’.
The Book Industry Awards are sponsored by Book Tokens Ltd and Nielsen Book, and were administered by the Book Trade Liaison Committee via Booksellers NZ.