Launched by the Saskatchewan Foundation For the Arts in June of 2021, the Glengarry Book Award supports Saskatchewan’s literary culture. The $20,000 (CAD) prize celebrates authors with Saskatchewan roots; the 2021 award celebrates nationally recognized Canadian author Dianne Warren.
The award was the vision of donor and booklover Claire Kramer, a founding trustee of the Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts (SFFA). The Glengarry Book Award is an annual award for a first edition English language novel or book of short fiction.
Dianne Warren is an author from Regina. Warren won the National Magazine Gold Award for Fiction and the Western Magazine Award for Fiction. She also won the Marian Engel Award from the Writers’ Trust of Canada in 2004. Her first novel, Cool Water, won the Governor General’s Award for English-language fiction in 2010 and was also long-listed for the Scotia bank Giller Prize.
2021 GLENGARRY BOOK AWARD JURY SHORT LIST for ‘Recognition of Literary Excellence’
The jury, comprised of a Canadian author, publisher and former judge and diplomat, also selected the 2021 Glengarry Book Award Jury Short List for ‘Recognition of Literary Excellence’.
The following three Saskatchewan authors and their works are being recognized: Lori Hahnel for Vermin-Stories, Karin Melberg Schwier for Small Reckonings, and Leona Theis for If Sylvie had Nine Lives.
The stories in Vermin span from the 1840s to the present, and are linked by themes of loss, longing, and music: a restaurant server in Tofino restaurant reflects on the nature of men in her past and present; a woman prepares to marry a brooding artist unpopular with both her parents and her small-town community; a new homeowner has strange encounters with a previous owner struggling to let go. Stories in this collection have appeared in Joyland, The Saturday Evening Post, Room, The Antigonish Review, and other journals and anthologies
Physical and emotional isolation shape the Burke family story in the 1920s and 1930s when homesteaders scratched out a new existence on the western Canadian prairie. William, an adventurer from New Zealand, brings his city bride Louise to the freshly broken earth of his farm near Watrous, Saskatchewan. Their story unfolds against the sweep of Saskatchewan prairie, and with the birth of a son, the couple believes their future is optimistic. Then Violet, the child born ‘feebleminded,’ plunges her mother—a woman burdened with a secret—back to a time of guilt and regret. The child draws out goodness, and weakness, in farmers Nik and Hanusia Yuzik, and loyalty in neighbours Hank and Emily. But tragedy and an unspeakable betrayal by William’s trusted friend upend the Burke family, taking all these characters at breakneck speed toward forgiveness and the realization that no one is infallible. So many choices, seemingly insignificant decisions, and twists of fate all have their reckonings. Based on a true story, Small Reckoningsmost recently won a 2021 Saskatchewan Book Award.
Meet Sylvie –funny, sly, sensual, and flawed. She can’t always count on herself to make good choices. She may or may not recognize a life-or-death moment, may or may not cancel her own wedding with a day to spare, might just try to walk past store security with a little something in her pocket. Like all of us, Sylvie must make decisions that have reverberations for years to come. Unlike the rest of us, Sylvie gets to live more than one life.
In airy prose imbued with humour, this novel asks the big questions: is there a right path and a wrong path, or does each possibility hold its share of pleasure and pain? Does a person have an immutable self, or is her essence dependent on circumstances? In this energetic and innovative book, Leona Theis creates a world without the usual limits and a protaganist who is conflicted, charismatic, brave, and full of curiosity. If Sylvie Had Nine Lives is for everyone who has ever asked, What if…?
Winner of the High Plains Book Award and the Saskatchewan Fiction Award. An innovative, gorgeously written story about the small decisions that shape our lives