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Indie Book Awards 2021 shortlists announced

Leading Edge Books has announced the shortlists for the 2021 Indie Book Awards.

The shortlisted titles in each category are:


  • All Our Shimmering Skies (Trent Dalton, HarperCollins)
  • The Living Sea of Waking Dreams (Richard Flanagan, Knopf)
  • Mammoth (Chris Flynn, UQP)
  • Honeybee (Craig Silvey, A&U)


  • Phosphorescence (Julia Baird, Fourth Estate)
  • The Happiest Man on Earth (Eddie Jaku, Macmillan)
  • People of the River (Grace Karskens, A&U)
  • Truganini (Cassandra Pybus, A&U)

Debut fiction

  • The Bluffs (Kyle Perry, Michael Joseph)
  • Song of the Crocodile (Nardi Simpson, Hachette)
  • A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing (Jessie Tu, A&U)
  • The Dictionary of Lost Words (Pip Williams, Affirm)

Illustrated nonfiction

  • Sam Bloom: Heartache & Birdsong (Samantha Bloom, Cameron Bloom & Bradley Trevor Greive, ABC Books)
  • Plantopedia (Lauren Camilleri & Sophia Kaplan, Smith Street Books)
  • Beatrix Bakes (Natalie Paull, Hardie Grant Books)
  • In Praise of Veg (Alice Zaslavsky, Murdoch Books)


  • The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Dangerous Animals (Sami Bayly, Lothian)
  • Sing Me The Summer (Jane Godwin, illus by Alison Lester, Affirm)
  • The Grandest Bookshop in the World (Amelia Mellor, Affirm)
  • Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow (Jessica Townsend, Lothian)

Young adult

  • Future Girl (Asphyxia, A&U)
  • Catch Me If I Fall (Barry Jonsberg, A&U)
  • The Left-Handed Booksellers of London (Garth Nix, A&U)
  • This One is Ours (Kate O’Donnell, UQP).

The shortlisted titles are nominated by independent booksellers from around the country. This year, for the first time, Leading Edge opened up nominations to all independent Australian bookshops in addition to Leading Edge members.

The category winners and overall book of the year will be announced at a virtual awards event on Monday, 22 March 2021.


Category: Awards Local news