The Koffler Centre of the Arts has announced the shortlist for the 2019 Vine Awards for Canadian Jewish Literature. The Vine Awards honour the best Canadian Jewish writers and Canadian authors who deal with Jewish subjects in five categories.
• Fiction: Claire Holden Rothman, Lear’s Shadow (Penguin Random House Canada); Aaron Kreuter, You and Me, Belonging (Tightrope Books; and ) Natalie Morrill, The Ghost Keeper (HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.)
• Non-Fiction: Anne Michaels, Infinite Gradation (Exile Editions); Sarah Weinman, The Real Lolita (Knopf Canada); and Lezli Rubin-Kunda, At Home: Talks with Canadian Artists about Place and Practice (Goose Lane Editions).
• Poetry: Linda Frank, Divided (Wolsak and Wynn Publishers); Anne Michaels, All We Saw (McClelland & Stewart); and Suzannah Showler, Thing Is (McClelland & Stewart)
• History: Benjamin Carter Hett, The Death of Democracy (Allen Lane Canada/Penguin Random House Canada); Robert Harris, Song of a Nation: The Untold Story of Canada’s National Anthem (McClelland & Stewart); and Sarah Wobick-Segev, Homes Away from Home: Jewish Belonging in Twentieth Century Paris, Berlin and St. Petersburg (Stanford University Press).
• Children’s/Young Adult: Jonathan Auxier, Sweep (Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers); Cary Fagan, Wolfie and Fly: Band on the Run (Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers); and Ellen Schwartz, Princess Dolls (Tradewind Books).
Winners will receive $10,000 and will be announced on Oct. 23 at an award luncheon at the Windsor Arms Hotel in Toronto. The 2019 Jury – poet Ayesha Chatterjee, children’s author Melanie J. Fishbane, and author Eric Beck Rubin – reviewed 84 entries.
“This year’s Vine Awards shortlist embodies the diversity of Canadian Jewish writing, characterized by the universal themes of home, family, and finding a place to belong,” said Fishbane. “These authors dive deep into generational trauma, challenge popular historical narratives, and ask the difficult questions about not only what it means to be Jewish, but to be human.”
The Vine Awards for Canadian Jewish Literature are made possible by a donation by the Lillian and Norman Glowinsky Family Foundation to support Canadian Jewish literature, a tradition they established with the original awards in 2004, building on the Canadian Jewish Book Awards founded in 1988 by Adam Fuerstenberg. The Vine Awards are a loving tribute to Lillian’s parents – Helen and Stan Vine – who were passionate about the arts and the Jewish community throughout their lives.