The 2014 Real Giller Prize winner is…


The Real Giller jury actually agreed with the Shadow Giller jury — what more can I say?

Then again, they read all the books and we read all the shortlist, so maybe the decision(s) shouldn’t be such a surprise — although I certainly was when I heard the announcement.

Keep scrolling to discovery how the Shadow Jury reached its decision. And you will find links to both Kimbofo and my reviews of Us Conductors.


12 Responses to “The 2014 Real Giller Prize winner is…”

  1. Dave Margoshes Says:

    You must be gloating, Kevin. I think the Globe’s expert panel gave Michaels zero points. And you guys got it on the nose!


  2. kimbofo Says:

    Oh. My. Goodness. Got woken up by a noise (it’s 5.30am GMT) and thought I should check who had won the Giller! Absolutely delighted to see Michaels name. How wonderful for him! It *IS* the best book on the list!


    • KevinfromCanada Says:

      Regular visitors might remember that in two recent years we would have agreed with the jury if we had listened to you — Half Blood Blues and 419. We were wise enough to pay attention this year.

      The Real Giller may have to consider whether they want to hire you away from the Shadow.


      • kimbofo Says:

        Well, if the Real Giller want to offer me a job they will have to pry me away from my Shadow Giller obligations, assuming you still want me onboard next year 😉


      • KevinfromCanada Says:

        Of course we still want you on board. And as much as you have developed an affection for (and knowledge of) Canadian fiction, I don’t think you want to undertake reading 161 titles in an eight month period — which is what this year’s jury had to do.


  3. Lisa Hill Says:

    Well done Shadow Jurors!


    • KevinfromCanada Says:

      Thanks, Lisa — we have certainly agreed with the Real Jury before (my count is nine out of 20 times, but that may be one or two low) but this one was particularly satisfying because no one else was choosing Us Conductors in the advance predictions.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Ray Garraty Says:

    I’m pleased to say that I was able to see Sean’s talent while reading his novel in manuscript, and Sean was kind and thoughtful to accept my corrections (dealing with Soviet life) into the final edit before the book was published. It is truly a beautiful novel.


    • KevinfromCanada Says:

      Thanks for those thoughts — the Shadow Jury obviously agrees with your assessment.


      • Lee Monks Says:

        Please help out an unbeknownst Englander, if you will, as to why a lot of pundits (other than yourselves) decided against Us Conductors. I’m merely curious as to what happened as, apart from Bezmogis, I know nothing about the eligible titles. Is this an unpopular choice? How has it gone down? Apologies for the level of querulousness, I’m genuinely interested.


      • KevinfromCanada Says:

        I am far away from Toronto, Lee, so I can’t say how the choice has been received in publishing circles — beyond it being a surprise. My hypothesis would be that it was overlooked by the “pundits” because it was a debut novel, but that is speculation on my part. Frankly, all of the shortlist had some flaws (including the winner) and I think you had to read them all to come up with a reasonable choice and your eventual choice would probably be a reflection of your own taste as much as anything else. As you’ll note from our results, Us Conductors had one vote each for first, second, third and fourth — that’s probably a reflection that the top four on the shortlist were fairly evenly matched. All were good, but none were great.


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