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Prime Minister’s Literary Awards 2017 shortlists announced

The shortlists for the 2017 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards have been announced.

The shortlisted titles in each category are:


  • The Easy Way Out (Steven Amsterdam, Hachette)
  • The Last Days of Ava Langdon (Mark O’Flynn, UQP)
  • Their Brilliant Careers (Ryan O’Neill, Black Inc.)
  • Waiting (Philip Salom, Puncher & Wattmann)
  • Extinctions (Josephine Wilson, UWAP)


  • Painting Red Orchids (Eileen Chong, Pitt Street Poetry)
  • Year of the Wasp (Joel Deane, Hunter)
  • Content (Liam Ferney, Hunter)
  • Fragements (Antigone Kefala, Giramondo)
  • Headwaters (Anthony Lawrence, Pitt Street Poetry)

Australian history

  • A Passion for Exploring New Countries: Matthew Flinders and George Bass (Josephine Bastian, Australian Scholarly Publishing)
  • Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent (Neil McDonald, NewSouth)
  • Evatt: A Life (John Murphy, NewSouth)
  • Atomic Thunder: The Maralinga Story (Elizabeth Tynan, NewSouth)
  • A Handful of Sand: The Gurindji Struggle after the Walk-off (Charlie Ward, Monash University Publishing)


  • Mick: A Life of Randolph Stow (Suzanne Falkiner, UWAP)
  • The Art of Time Travel: Historians and their Craft (Tom Griffiths, Black Inc.)
  • Our Man Elsewhere: In Search of Alan Moorehead (Thornton McCamish, Black Inc.)
  • Quicksilver (Nicolas Rothwell, Text)
  • The Art of Rivalry: Four Friendships, Betrayals and Breakthroughs in Modern Art (Sebastian Smee, Text)

Children’s fiction 

  • Home in the Rain (Bob Graham, Walker Books)
  • Blue Sky, Yellow Kite (Janet A Holmes, illus by Jonathan Bentley, Little Hare)
  • My Brother (Dee Huxley, illus by Oliver Huxley, Working Title Press)
  • Figgy and the President (Tamsin Janu, Scholastic)
  • Dragonfly Song (Wendy Orr, A&U)

Young adult fiction

  • Words in Deep Blue (Cath Crowley, Pan Macmillan)
  • The Bone Sparrow (Zana Frailon, Hachette)
  • The Stars at Oktober Bend (Glenda Millard, A&U)
  • Forgetting Foster (Dianne Touchell, A&U)
  • One Would Think the Deep (Claire Zorn, UQP).

The winners in each category will receive $80,000 and the shortlisted writers will receive $5000. All prizes are tax-free.

The winners will be announced on 1 December in Canberra. For more information about the awards, click here.



Category: Awards Local news