Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

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ABIA 2019 shortlists announced

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

The titles in each category are:

General fiction book of the year

  • Scrublands (Chris Hammer, A&U)
  • The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart (Holly Ringland, Fourth Estate)
  • The Nowhere Child (Christian White, Affirm)
  • The Rúin (Dervla McTiernan, HarperCollins)
  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz (Heather Morris, Echo)

Literary fiction book of the year

  • Boy Swallows Universe (Trent Dalton, Fourth Estate)
  • Bridge of Clay (Markus Zusak, Picador)
  • Shell (Kristina Olsson, Scribner)
  • The Shepherd’s Hut (Tim Winton, Hamish Hamilton)
  • Too Much Lip (Melissa Lucashenko, UQP)

General nonfiction book of the year

  • Any Ordinary Day (Leigh Sales, Hamish Hamilton)
  • Boys Will Be Boys (Clementine Ford, A&U)
  • Dear Santa (Samuel Johnson, Hachette)
  • No Friend But the Mountains: Writing from Manus Prison (Behrouz Boochani, trans by Omid Tofighian, Picador)
  • Welcome to Country: A Travel Guide to Indigenous Australia (Marcia Langton, Hardie Grant Travel)

Biography book of the year

  • Back, After the Break (Osher Günsberg, HarperCollins)
  • Challenge Accepted! (Celeste Barber, HarperCollins)
  • Eggshell Skull (Bri Lee, A&U)
  • Johnathan Thurston: The Autobiography (Johnathan Thurston with James Phelps, HarperCollins)
  • Teacher (Gabbie Stroud, A&U)

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

  • Amelia Westlake, (Erin Gough, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Catching Teller Crow (Ambelin Kwaymullina & Ezekiel Kwaymullina, A&U)
  • Hive (A J Betts, Pan)
  • Jane Doe and the Cradle of All Worlds (Jeremy Lachlan, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Small Spaces (Sarah Epstein, Walker)

Book of the year for younger children (ages 7-12)

  • Lenny’s Book of Everything (Karen Foxlee, A&U)
  • Real Pigeons Fight Crime (Andrew McDonald & Ben Wood, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • The 104-Storey Treehouse (Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton, Pan)
  • The Bad Guys Episode 7: Do-You-Think-He-Saurus?! (Aaron Blabey, Scholastic)
  • Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow: Nevermoor 2 (Jessica Townsend, Lothian)

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

  • All the Ways to be Smart (Davina Bell & Allison Colpoys, Scribble)
  • Cicada (Shaun Tan, Lothian)
  • Claris: The Chicest Mouse in Paris (Megan Hess, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Macca the Alpaca (Matt Cosgrove, Koala Books)
  • Pig the Grub (Aaron Blabey, Scholastic)

Illustrated book of the year

  • A Painted Landscape: Across Australia from Bush to Coast (Amber Creswell Bell, Thames & Hudson)
  • Family: New Vegetable Classics to Comfort and Nourish (Hetty McKinnon, Plum)
  • Mirka & Georges (Lesley Harding & Kendrah Morgan, MUP)
  • Special Guest (Annabel Crabb & Wendy Sharpe, Murdoch Books)
  • The Cook’s Apprentice (Stephanie Alexander, Lantern)

International book of the year

  • Becoming (Michelle Obama, Viking)
  • CIRCE (Madeline Miller, Bloomsbury)
  • Less (Andrew Sean Greer, Abacus)
  • Lost Connections (Johann Hari, Bloomsbury Circus)
  • Ottolenghi Simple (Yotam Ottolenghi, Ebury)

Small publishers’ adult book of the year

  • A Superior Spectre (Angela Meyer, Peter Bishop Books)
  • Blakwork (Alison Whittaker, Magabala)
  • Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia (ed by Anita Heiss, Black Inc.)
  • The Bookshop of the Broken Hearted (Robert Hillman, Text)
  • The Geography of Friendship (Sally Piper, UQP)

Small publishers’ children’s book of the year

  • Black Cockatoo (Carl Merrison & Hakea Hustler, Magabala)
  • I Had Such Friends (Meg Gatland-Veness, Pantera)
  • Rhyme Cordial (Antonia Pesenti, Scribble)
  • The Extremely Weird Thing that Happened in Huggabie Falls (Adam Cece, illus by Andrew Weldon, Text)
  • Whisper (Lynette Noni, Pantera)

The Matt Richell award for new writer of the year

  • Boy Swallows Universe (Trent Dalton, Fourth Estate)
  • The Nowhere Child (Christian White, Affirm)
  • Eggshell Skull (Bri Lee, A&U)
  • The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart (Holly Ringland, Fourth Estate)
  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz (Heather Morris, Echo).

ABIA 2018 Audiobook Award Shortlist

  • Boy Swallows Universe (Trent Dalton, narrated by Stig Wemyss, HarperAudio)
  • Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia (ed by Anita Heiss, narrated by Gregory J Fryer et al, Wavesound)
  • The Clockmaker’s Daughter (Kate Morton, narrated by Joanne Froggatt, Bolinda)
  • The Lost Man (Jane Harper, narrated by Steve Shanahan, Wavesound)
  • The Trauma Cleaner (Sarah Krasnostein, narrated by Rachael Tidd, Audible).

For the second year, an ABIA award for Rising Star of the Year will be presented to recognise emerging talent within the publishing industry. The shortlisted candidates are:

  • Alice Wood (HarperCollins)
  • Catriona Murdie (Penguin Random House)
  • Ella Chapman (Hachette)
  • Mark Campbell (HarperCollins)
  • Sam Cooney (Brow Books).

The winners in all categories will be announced on Thursday, 2 May at a ceremony at the International Convention Centre Sydney. The host of the evening will be Casey Bennetto.

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.


Category: Local news