Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

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ABIAs 2018 shortlists announced

The shortlists for the 2018 Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIAs) have been announced.

The titles in each category are:

General fiction book of the year

  • Force of Nature (Jane Harper, Macmillan)
  • The Dark Lake (Sarah Bailey, A&U)
  • The Inaugural Meeting of the Fairvale Ladies Book Club (Sophie Green, Hachette)
  • The Secrets She Keeps (Michael Robotham, Hachette)
  • The Trip of a Lifetime (Monica McInerney, Michael Joseph)

Literary fiction book of the year

  • A Long Way from Home (Peter Carey, Hamish Hamilton)
  • First Person (Richard Flanagan, Knopf)
  • See What I Have Done (Sarah Schmidt, Hachette)
  • The Choke (Sofie Laguna, A&U)
  • Wimmera (Mark Brandi, Hachette)

General nonfiction book of the year

  • Being 14 (Madonna King, Hachette)
  • Depends What You Mean By Extremist (John Safran, Hamish Hamilton)
  • First, We Make the Beast Beautiful (Sarah Wilson, Macmillan)
  • Saga Land (Richard Fidler & Kári Gíslason, ABC Books)
  • The Trauma Cleaner (Sarah Krasnostein, Text)

Biography of the year

  • Danger Music (Eddie Ayres, A&U)
  • Tracker (Alexis Wright, Giramondo)
  • Unbreakable (Jelena Dokic & Jess Halloran, Ebury)
  • Unmasked (Turia Pitt, Ebury)
  • Working Class Man (Jimmy Barnes, HarperCollins)

Book of the year for older children (ages 13+)

  • Beautiful Mess (Claire Christian, Text)
  • Begin, End, Begin: A #LoveOzYA Anthology (ed by Danielle Binks, HarperCollins)
  • My Life as a Hashtag (Gabrielle Williams, A&U)
  • Tales from a Tall Forest (Shaun Micallef, illus by Jonathan Bentley, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • The Silent Invasion (James Bradley, Pan)

Book of the year for younger children (ages 7-13)

  • Frankie Fish and the Sonic Suitcase (Peter Helliar, illus by Lesley Vamos, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Funny Kid for President (Matt Stanton, ABC Books)
  • Nevermoor (Jessica Townsend, Lothian)
  • Polly and Buster: The Wayward Witch and the Feelings Monster (Sally Rippin, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • The 91-Storey Treehouse (Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton, Pan)

Children’s picture book of the year (ages 0-6)

  • Do Not Lick This Book (Idan Ben-Barak, illus by Julian Frost, A&U)
  • Florette (Anna Walker, Viking)
  • I’m Australian Too (Mem Fox, illus by Ronojoy Ghosh, Scholastic)
  • No One Likes a Fart (Zoë Foster Blake, Viking)
  • Pig the Star (Aaron Blabey, Scholastic)

Illustrated book of the year

  • Basics to Brilliance Kids (Donna Hay, Fourth Estate)
  • Maggie’s Recipe for Life (Maggie Beer & Ralph Martins, A Julie Gibbs Book for Simon & Schuster)
  • Native: Art and Design with Australian Plants (Kate Herd & Jela Ivankovic-Waters, Thames & Hudson)
  • Ostro (Julia Busuttil Nishimura, Plum)
  • Paris: Through a Fashion Eye (Megan Hess, Hardie Grant Books)

The Matt Richell Award for new writer of the year

  • Nevermoor (Jessica Townsend, Lothian)
  • Terra Nullius (Claire G Coleman, Hachette)
  • The Girl from Munich (Tania Blanchard, S&S)
  • The Trauma Cleaner (Sarah Krasnostein, Text)
  • Wimmera (Mark Brandi, Hachette)

Small publishers’ adult book of the year

  • Call of the Reed Warbler (Charles Massy, UQP)
  • Cardinal (Louise Milligan, MUP)
  • The Australian Bird Guide (Peter Menkhorst, Danny Rogers, Rohan Clarke et al, CSIRO Publishing)
  • The Restorer (Michael Sala, Text)
  • Museum of Words (Georgia Blain, Scribe)

Small publishers’ children’s book of the year

  • Big Fella Rain (Beryl Webber, illus by Fern Martins, Magabala)
  • Hello, Melbourne! (Megan McKean, Thames & Hudson)
  • It’s OK to Feel the Way You Do (Josh Langley, Big Sky Publishing)
  • The Elephant (Peter Carnavas, UQP)
  • Under the Love Umbrella (Davina Bell, illus by Allison Colpoys, Scribble)

International book of the year

  • Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine (Gail Honeyman, HarperCollins)
  • Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls (Elena Favilli & Francesa Cavallo, Particular Books)
  • Home Fire (Kamila Shamsie, Bloomsbury)
  • La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Volume One (Philip Pullman, David Fickling Books)
  • Lincoln in the Bardo (George Saunders, Bloomsbury)

Audiobook of the year

  • The Attachment: Letters from a Most Unlikely Friendship (Ailsa Piper & Tony Doherty, Wavesound)
  • Try Hard: Tales from the Life of a Needy Overachiever (With Extra Sass), (Em Rusciano, Wavesound)
  • Marge and the Great Train Rescue (Isla Fisher, Bolinda)
  • Working Class Boy (Jimmy Barnes, Bolinda)
  • The 91-Storey Treehouse (Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton, narrated by Stig Weymss, Bolinda)

For the first time, a new ABIA award for Rising Star of the Year will be presented to recognise emerging talent within the publishing industry. The five shortlisted candidates, chosen from 22 entries, are:

  • Ali Hammond (category manager, Dymocks Booksellers)
  • Cate Blake (commissioning editor, PRH)
  • Lex Hirst (commissioning editor, PRH)
  • Patrizia Di Biase-Dyson (publicity manager, A&U)
  • Shalini Kunahlan (marketing manager, Text)

The winners in all categories will be announced on Thursday, 3 May at a ceremony at the International Convention Centre Sydney. The hosts of the evening will be Ben Jenkins and Zoe Norton-Lodge.

The ABIAs celebrate the ‘best books of the year’ and ‘the best of Australian storytellers, booksellers and publishers’. For more information, visit the ABIA website.


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