2022 Scotiabank Giller Prize Winner Suzette Mayr announced the 2023 longlist of nominees on Wednesday at a special event celebrating the prize's 30th anniversary. Photo: Ryan Emberley
Scotiabank Giller Prize Longlist Recognizes 12 Authors Who Demonstrate “the Power of Human Imagination”
The 2023 longlist includes the prize's 2005 winner David Bergen and debut novelist Deborah Willis. / BY Andrew Wright / September 6th, 2023
The Scotiabank Giller Prize announced their 2023 longlist on Wednesday at a special event in St. John’s celebrating the prestigious award’s 30th anniversary.
Suzette Mayr — who took home the $100,000 award last year for her novel The Sleeping Car Porter — announced the 12 authors, who were selected from 145 submissions, an all-time high for the literary prize that recognizes the best in Canadian fiction.
The panel of judges — which included 2019’s winner, Canadian author Ian Williams — described the list as “a party of Canadian literature” featuring both established and emerging writers.
“They discuss family, friendships, the climate crisis, war, privilege, good intentions. Neat, quiet, intimate, introverted stories of relationships brush against loud messy globetrotting stories. These books made the jury think about them long afterward; sometimes they haunted us, sometimes they were like earworms we couldn’t stop singing,” read a press release of the selections.
“This longlist is unafraid of being censored or misunderstood. The writers ask for our patience and sophistication; they stand up against all threats, AI included, and remind us of the unmatchable power of the human imagination.”
Among the hopefuls are David Bergen, who won the 2005 Giller Prize for his novel The Time in Between, Sarah Bernstein for her second novel, Study for Obedience, and Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer for her novel Wait Softly Brother.
The list also includes Deborah Willis for her debut novel, Girlfriend on Mars, which tells the story of a young woman who competes on a reality TV show for a trip to Mars.
The short list for the prize will be announced on Oct. 11.
Here are the 14 titles chosen for the long list by the jury:
David Bergen for his novel Away From the Dead
Sarah Bernstein for her novel Study for Obedience
Eleanor Catton for her novel Birnam Wood
Kevin Chong for his novel The Double Life of Benson Yu
Nina Dunic for her novel The Clarion
Erum Shazia Hasan for her novel We Meant Well
Dionne Irving for her short story collection The Islands: Stories
Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer for her novel Wait Softly Brother
Menaka Raman-Wilms for her novel The Rooftop Garden
CS Richardson for his novel All The Colour in the World
Kasia Van Schaik for her short story collection We Have Never Lived on Earth
Deborah Willis for her novel Girlfriend on Mars