2017 Giller Prize longlist — and the long-awaited return of the Shadow Jury!


Hello friends, it’s that time of year again: the longlist for the 2017 Scotiabank Giller Prize has been unveiled. And the Shadow Jury is going to be following along as per usual. Hooray!

Before naming the 12 titles on the list, let me explain a bit about how the Shadow Jury works in case you’ve not followed along before.

There are three of us on the jury: Toronto-based Alison Gzowski, who is an editor at The Globe and Mail; Novia Scotia-based Naomi MacKinnon, who blogs at Consumed by Ink; and myself, Kim Forrester, who blogs at Reading Matters and lives in London, UK.

Our late chairman Kevin began chairing a “shadow jury” in 1995 when he was publisher of the Calgary Herald  — you can find the story of its history here. When he died last year, we decided to honour his memory by continuing to run the Shadow Giller jury and now, with the blessing of Kevin’s widow, Sheila, we continue to use Kevin’s blog to promote and champion the Canadian literature he loved so much every Giller Prize season.

Over the next couple of months we will post excerpts of reviews by Naomi and myself (with links back to our own blogs). Alison also promises to contribute a few guest posts and be actively involved in the comments, too.

Because of the short timing between the longlist and shortlist announcement on 2 October, it’s unlikely we’ll be reviewing the entire longlist, but we will endeavour to read every title on the shortlist and take it from there…

In the long-established tradition of the Shadow Giller Jury, we will announce our winner a few days in advance of the official Giller Prize announcement on November 20.

Shadow Giller logo

In the meantime, here’s the longlist, which was announced earlier today:

  • David Chariandy for his novel Brother, published by McClelland & Stewart
  • Rachel Cusk for her novel Transit, published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
  • David Demchuk for his novel The Bone Mother, published by ChiZine Publications
  • Joel Thomas Hynes for his novel We’ll All Be Burned in Our Beds Some Night, published by HarperPerennial, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
  • Andrée A. Michaud for her novel Boundary, published by Biblioasis International Translation Series, translated by Donald Winkler
  • Josip Novakovich for his story collection Tumbleweed, published by Esplanade Books/Véhicule Press
  • Ed O’Loughlin for his novel Minds of Winter, published by House of Anansi Press
  • Zoey Leigh Peterson for her novel Next Year, For Sure, published by Doubleday Canada
  • Michael Redhill for his novel Bellevue Square, published by Doubleday Canada
  • Eden Robinson for her novel Son of a Trickster, published by Alfred A. Knopf Canada
  • Deborah Willis for her story collection The Dark and Other Love Stories, published by Hamish Hamilton Canada
  • Michelle Winters for her novel I Am a Truck, published by Invisible Publishing

Please do add comments and chime in with your own thoughts on the titles as we review them. Taking part in the Shadow Giller is always a highlight of my reading year, but it’s made all the better when booklovers from across the world jump in and take part, too. We’ll be delighted and honoured to have you along…


12 Responses to “2017 Giller Prize longlist — and the long-awaited return of the Shadow Jury!”

  1. Mary Says:

    Great to see this back for another year! I’m a librarian and always follow along – and look forward to the reviews and comments. Thanks for keeping it going.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Jessie May Keller Says:

    I am happy to see the Shadow Jury back! Good memories – good reading.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Pat Schneider Says:

    Great way to honour Kevin. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. carolebesharah Says:

    So excited that you are back!

    I celebrated the long list by taking a quick walk to a bookstore during my lunch break to buy Next Year, For Sure. It sounds like a fun read.

    So many new-to-me authors this year. Bring on the reviews, Shadow Giller!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Lisa Hill Says:

    Yes, good to see you back:)
    Can I help with a review of one of these that you might not have time to get to? I haven’t read any of them, so pick one and as long as I can get it on Kindle (and not short stories, please) I’d be happy to help.
    PS I still miss him. I miss him heaps.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Deborah Says:

    Great to see you back! Most of the titles are new to me. I appreciate you reviewing the Giller books!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Lisa Hill Says:

    I can get Transit by Rachel Cusk, The Bone Mother by David Demchuk, Boundary by Andrée A. Michaud, Minds of Winter by Ed O’Loughlin, and I am a Truck by Michelle Winters. Want me to do any of those?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. kimbofo Says:

    Sorry, Lisa, only just seen this! You’re welcome to read Transit (I’m not a Cusk fan) 😉


  9. readerlane Says:

    Delighted to see this tradition carried on! I look forward to it each year as a way of learning about some of the best of current Canadian writing.

    Liked by 1 person

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