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The Books in Canada First Novel Award is a literary award given annually to the best first novel in English published the previous year by a citizen or resident of Canada. It has been awarded since 1976.

According to Wiki , the Award has a tumultuous history. It was founded by the literary magazine Books in Canada but when money ran short the award was managed by Smithbooks and became the "Smithbooks/Books in Canada First Novel Award". When Smithbooks was acquired by Chapters Books Inc., it became the "Chapters/Books in Canada First Novel Award". In 1999 the magazine decided to end its affiliation with Chapters. It is now officially the Amazon.ca/Books in Canada First Novel Award

2010 Amazon.ca First Novel Award Winner:

2010 - Jessica Grant, is winner of the 34th annual Amazon.ca First Novel Award for Come, Thou Tortoise. Head judge Stuart Woods--editor of the award's co-presenter, Quill & Quire magazine--called the book "a heartfelt tale full to the brim with warm sentiment and the gentle absurdities of contemporary life. The novel introduces a memorable, utterly unique character in Canadian fiction, and in its author, a singular talent to watch."

2009- Amazon.ca First Novel Award Winner: Joan Thomas for Reading by Lightning

Amazon.ca First Novel AwardReading by Lightning

The winner of the 33rd annual Amazon.ca First Novel Award is Reading by Lightning by Joan Thomas. Head judge Aritha van Herk called the book "a fabulous novel, full of grace and delicious discovery, haunted by the flavour of memory and the prairies in World War II. Read more about Reading by Lightning, and browse all the finalists below.

The Amazon.ca First Novel Award recognizes the outstanding achievement of a Canadian first-time novelist. Since 1976, the award has launched the careers of some of Canada's most beloved novelists, including Michael Ondaatje, Joan Barfoot, Joy Kogawa, W.P. Kinsella, Nino Ricci, Rohinton Mistry, Anne Michaels, André Alexis, Michael Redhill, Mary Lawson, Colin McAdam, and Joseph Boyden

  • Other Shortlisted
    Chase & Haven by Mike Blouin - details
  • Stunt by Claudia Dey - details
  • Red Dog, Red Dog by Patrick Lane - details
    The Boys in the Trees by Mary Swan - details
    Reading by Lightning by Joan Thomas -details
    The Toss of a Lemon by Padma Viswanatha - details

2008 Toronto's Gil Adamson adamson_gil

Toronto October 2 , 2008 — Toronto author Gil Adamson has won thethe_outlander $7,500 Amazon.ca/Books in Canada First Novel Award for her 2007 novel The Outlander.

Adamson, 47, received her cheque at a ceremony last night in Toronto. The Outlander was one of six novels shortlisted for the prize, which is marking its 31st anniversary this year.

The other finalists were: David Chariandry for Soucouyant, Kyo Maclear (The Letter Opener), CS Richardson (The End of the Alphabet), Brian Tucker (Big White Knuckles) and Andrew Wedderburn (Milk Chicken Bomb).

Outlander by Gil Adamson : Part historical novel, part western Gothic, and part adventure story, The Outlander is astonishing in its portrayal of crime and retribution, and survival and love.

2008 Other Finalists

Final lists were selected by Aritha van Herk, who is an award winning Canadian novelist, a member of the Royal Society of Canada, and a professor of Canadian literature and creative writing in the Department of English at the University of Calgary.

Soucouyant by David Chariandy: Said to wear the skin of an old woman by day and take the form of a wandering fireball by night, the specter of the Soucouyant haunts Adele, the Trinidad-born mother at the center of Vancouver novelist Chariandy's debut.

The Letter Opener by Kyo Maclear: Naiko works in theUndeliverable Mail Office, a cavernous space that resembles agiant,congestedpawnshop. Immersed in things lost and missing, she searches for clues to match undeliverable mail with addresses, until her co-worker Andrei, an enigmatic Romanian refugee who has become the unlikely object of Naiko's fascination, suddenly vanishes..

The End of the Alphabet by C.S. Richardson: When Ambrose Zephyr is told by his doctor that he has only a month to live, he decides to contradict his impending death by embarking on a wild journey, an alphabetical grand tour of allthe places on the globe that demand visiting. Thus begins a frantic odyssey, from Amsterdam to Berlin to Chartres to Paris to Florence and onwards.tucker_brian

bi_white_knucles_coverBig White Knuckles by Brian Tucke (right): The older Dagan gets, the more he begins to suspect that he can't be like his Da. His Da's hands are powerful, stained by the earth and blood, while his own hands are soft and stained with paint and pastel. Dagan's hands can draw, and as his abilities as an artist expand, so do his expectations.

The Milk Chicken Bomb by Andrew Wedderburn: In small-town Alberta, there are just too many roman-candle fights, retaliatory river diversions, black-market submarines, exploding boilers, meat-packing-plant suicides, and recess-time lightning strikes for one lonely kid to get any attention. Then the adults in his life start disappearing....

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· Certainty by Madeleine Thien--Winner!
· The Law of Dreams by Peter Behrens
· The Uninvited Guest by John Degen
· Stolen by Annette Lapointe
· Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O'Neill
· Empress of Asia by Adam Lewis Schroeder


· Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden--Winner!
· The City Man by Howard Akler
· Gotta Find Me an Angel by Brenda Brooks
· The Sad Truth About Happiness by Anne Giardini
· The Nettle Spinners by Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer
· The Rent Collector by B. Glen Rotchin


· Some Great Thing by Colin McAdam--Winner!
· Sunday Afternoon by David Elias
· Skinny by Ibi Kaslik
· What's Remembered by Arthur Moyer
· Bishop's House by Catherine Safer

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· Black Bird by Michel Basilières--Winner!
· The Expedition by Clayton Bailey
· The Island Walkers by John Bemrose
· Kalyna's Song by Lisa Grekul
· Ten Thousand Lovers by Edeet Ravel
· Blue Becomes You by Bettina von Kampen


· Crow Lake by Mary Lawson--Winner!
· Heave by Christy Ann Conlin
· Stay by Aislinn Hunter
· The Beautiful Dead End by Clint Hutzulak
· Cumberland by Michael V. Smith
· Spelling Mississippi by Marnie Woodrow


· Martin Sloane by Michael Redhill--Winner!
· The Ash Garden by Dennis Bock
· River Thieves by Michael Crummey
· Open Arms by Marina Endicott
· Strong Hollow by Linda Little
· Ten Good Seconds of Silence by Elizabeth Ruth


· Necessary Lies by Eva Stachniak--Winner!
· Finnie Walsh by Steven Galloway
· The Dominion of Wyley McFadden by Scott Gardiner
· Alice, I Think by Susan Juby
· This Place Called Absence by Lydia Kwa

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· Summer Gone by David Macfarlane--Cowinner!
· Before the Flood by Alan R. Wilson--Cowinner!
· No Great Mischief by Alistair MacLeod
· Kit's Law by Donna Morrissey
· Flyboy Action Figure Comes with Gasmask by Jim Munroe
· A Fine Daughter by Catherine Simmons-Niven


· Childhood by André Alexis--Winner!
· The Handless Maiden by Loranne Brown
· Kiss of the Fur Queen by Tomson Highway
· Beneath That Starry Place by Terry Jordan
· The Electrical Field by Kerri Sakamoto


· Opium Dreams by Margaret Gibson--Winner!
· Elephant Winter by Kim Echlin
· The Blood Libel by Allan Levine
· Homer in Flight by Rabindranath Maharaj
· Angel Falls by Tim Wynveen

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· Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels--Winner!
· The Cure for Death by Lightning by Gail Anderson-Dargatz
· Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald
· Self by Yann Martel
· Cereus Blooms at Night by Shani Mootoo


· Popular Anatomy by Keath Fraser--Winner!
· Highways and Dancehalls by Diana Atkinson
· The Jade Peony by Wayson Choy
· When Fox Is a Thousand by Larissa Lai
· Daughters of the Red Land by Yan Li


· Funny Boy by Shyam Selvadurai--Winner!
· Kitchen Music by Charles Foran
· In the Language of Love by Diane Schoemperlen
· How Insensitive by Russell Smith
· Alex & Zee by Cordelia Strube


· Losing Eddie by Deborah Joy Corey--Winner!
· Minus Time by Catherine Bush
· The Crew by Don Dickinson
· Blow Up the Trumpet in the New Moon by Douglas How
· If I Knew I'd Tell You by Carol Malyon

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· The Afterlife of George Cartwright by John Steffler--Winner!
· Amnesia by Douglas Cooper
· Voice-over by Carole Corbeil
· Brud by Kenneth J. Harvey
· Spin Dry by Greg Hollingshead


· Such a Long Journey by Rohinton Mistry--Winner!
· Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture by Douglas Coupland
· Woyzeck's Head by Ekbert Faas
· Kleinberg by Michael Kenyon
· News from a Foreign Country Came by Alberto Manguel


· Lives of the Saints by Nino Ricci--Winner!
· Deadly Appearances by Gail Bowen
· The Dark Jewels by Rita Donovan
· Grace Lake by Glen Huser
· Homework by Margot Livesey
· Sniper's Moon by Carsten Stroud


· The Missing Child by Sandra Birdsell--Winner!
· To All Appearances a Lady by Marilyn Bowering
· The Way the Angel Spread Her Wings by Barry Callaghan
· Madeleine and the Angel by Jacqueline Dumas
· The Prowler by Kristjana Gunnars
· Distant Relations by Kenneth Radu

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· A Man of Little Faith by Rick Salutin--Winner!
· A Casual Brutality by Neil Bissoondath
· The Victory of Geraldine Gull by Joan Clark
· Electrical Storms by David Homel
· Constellations by Janice Kulyk Keefer
· January, February, June or July by Helen Fogwill Porter


· The Butterfly Chair by Marion Quednau--Winner!
· Fire Eyes by D.F. Bailey
· Squatters' Island by W.D. Barcus
· The Blackbird's Song by Pauline Holdstock
· Selakhi by Seán Virgo


·The Life of Helen Alone by Karen Lawrence--Winner!
· Downfall People by Jo Anne Williams Bennett
· Momentum by Marc Diamond
· Back on Tuesday by David Gilmour
· The Late Great Human Road Show by Paulette Jiles


· The Story of Bobby O'Malley by Wayne Johnston--Winner!
· A Nest of Singing Birds by Susan Charlotte Haley
· A Certain Mr. Takahashi by Ann Ireland
· Master and Maid by Frank Jones
· Wales' Work by Robert Walshe

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· Perdue: Or How the West Was Lost by Geoffrey Ursell--Winner!
· Country of the Heart by Sharon Butala
· Precious by Douglas Glover
· Dazzled by John Gray
· I Hear the Reaper's Song by Sara Stambaugh
· The Salvation of Yasch Siemens by Armin Wiebe


· Willie: A Romance by Heather Robertson--Winner!
· Tolerable Levels of Violence by Robert G. Collins
· The Biggest Modern Woman in the World by Susan Swan
· Not Working by George Szanto
· Figures on a Wharf by Wayne Tefs


· Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella--Winner!
· Coming for to Carry by Lorris Elliott
· Preparing for Sabbath by Nessa Rapoport
· Blue by Geraldine Rahmani
· The Bee Book by Ann Rosenberg


· Obasan by Joy Kogawa--Winner!
· Streethearts by Jim Christy
· Final Decree by George Jonas
· Sunday's Child by Edward Phillips
· Always Tip the Dealer by Gary Ross

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· Gentle Sinners by W.D. Valgardson--Winner!
· Laughing War by Martyn Burke
· The Charcoal Burners by Susan Musgrave
· Seahorse by Graham Petrie
· Fat Woman by Leon Rooke


· Lunar Attractions by Clark Blaise--Winner!
· Mrs. Job by Victoria Branden
· Peckertracks by Stan Dragland
· A Man Without Passion by Florence Evans
· Everything in the Window by Shirley Faessler
· Random Descent by Katherine Govier
· Crossings by Betty Lambert


· Abra by Joan Barfoot--Winner!
· The Double-Cross Circuit by Michael Dorland
· Disneyland, Please by Clive Doucet
· Parade on an Empty Street by Margaret Drury Gane
· Hold Fast by Kevin Major
· The Italians by Frank Paci


· Sandbars by Oonah McFee--Winner!
· Sidehill Gouger by Shane Dennison
· Child of the Morning by Pauline Gedge
· The Invention of the World by Jack Hodgins
· I Do Remember the Fall by M.T. Kelly
· A Small Informal Dance by Helen Levi
· The Abramsky Variations by Morley Torgov


· The Seventh Hexagram by Ian McLachlan--Cowinner!
· Coming Through Slaughter by Michael Ondaatje--Cowinner!
· Eileen McCullough by Alice Boissoneau
· The Falling World of Tristram Pocket by David Kellum
· Middlewatch by Susan Kerslake
· The True Story of Ida Johnson by Sharon Riis
· Small Ceremonies by Carol Shields
· The Descent of Andrew McPherson by Mary Soderstrom

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