2016 Toronto Book Awards finalists announced

The finalists for the 2016 Toronto Book Awards have been announced by the City of Toronto and Toronto Public Library. Established by Toronto City Council in 1974, the awards honour authors of books of literary merit that are evocative of Toronto. The finalists and their books:

• Howard Akler for his memoir “Men of Action” published by Coach House Books
• Ann Y.K. Choi for her novel “Kay’s Lucky Coin Variety” published by Simon & Schuster Canada
• Editors John Lorinc, Michael McClelland, Ellen Scheinberg and Tatum Taylor for “The Ward: The Life and Loss of Toronto’s First Immigrant Neighbourhood” published by Coach House Books
• Cordelia Strube for her novel “On the Shores of Darkness, There is Light” published by ECW Press
• Marnie Woodrow for her novel “Heyday” published by Tightrope Books

“Each year, the Toronto Book Awards inspire us with stories that express our experiences of the city,” said Mayor John Tory. “All the finalists and their stories help us expand our idea of what Toronto is, was and can be.”

“We are thrilled to be working with the Toronto Book Awards to present the winner in October,” said City Librarian Vickery Bowles. “There are magnificent works on the shortlist, reminding us all of how fortunate we are to live in a city with such amazing talent.”

The winner of the 2016 Toronto Book Awards will be announced on October 11 at the Toronto Reference Library. Members of the public are welcome to attend the free awards ceremony hosted by CBC Radio’s Gill Deacon at the Bram and Bluma Appel Salon starting at 7 p.m. on that date.

Ticket reservations are recommended. Tickets will be available via the Toronto Public Library website starting September 13.

The shortlisted authors are scheduled to read from their books at The Word On the Street book and magazine festival at Harbourfront Centre from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, September 25. In addition, they will deliver readings of their works at the Scarborough Civic Centre Library (156 Borough Dr.) on October 5 at 7 p.m.

This year is the 42nd year of the Toronto Book Awards. The annual awards offer $15,000 in prize money. Each finalist will receive $1,000, with $10,000 going to the winner. This year’s Toronto Book Awards Committee is made up of volunteer members Irfan Ali, Ann Jansen, Kilby Smith-McGregor and Conan Tobias.

More information about the awards, reading events and what the jury members said about the shortlisted books is available at http://www.toronto.ca/book_awards. The public can also follow and interact with the awards on Twitter @TOBookAwards and #tobookawards.

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