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The Tasmania Book Prizes celebrate works published in the previous two years. In 2005 the inaugural Tasmania Prize was won by David Hansen's John Glover and the Colonial Picturesque.
The prizes are given in three categories. Tasmania Book Prize ($25,000), the Margaret Scott Prize ($5000), and the University of Tasmania Prize ($5000).
When the 2011 winners are announced grab the books as quickly as you can as they are elusive., particularly those in the The University of Tasmania Prize for the best book by a Tasmanian publisher category. Thank goodness for libraries.
More information can be found, if you are patient enough, on the Arts Tasmania site.
The Tasmania Book Prize for best book with Tasmanian content in any genre - $25 000
The Margaret Scott Prize for best book by a Tasmanian writer - $5 000
The University of Tasmania Prize for the best book by a Tasmanian publisher - $5 000
Judges: Anna Johnston from the University of Tasmania, poet Tim Thorne and retired book retailer Irene McGuire
Winners will be announced at a gala event on Sunday, 3 April 2011 at the Hobart Town Hall, hosted by the ABC’s Walkley Award winning journalist Virginia Trioli.
A history of convict life and settlement in Van Diemen's Land has won the AUD$25,000 Tasmania Book Prize. The 2009 award has been presented as part of the Ten Days on the Island arts festival.
Hobart author James Boyce spent seven years working on Van Diemen's Land: A History, (James Boyce, Black Inc.)
"When you're writing about Tasmania, people are so interested that you feel like writing within a community and get feedback and ideas and there's a sense of belonging," Boyce explained.
Other prizes, worth AUD$5000, were also announced at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery in Hobart.
Hamish Maxwell-Stewart won the Margaret Scott Prize for the best book by a Tasmanian writer. He pieced together thousands of old records to tell of convict life in the notorious Macquarie Harbour settlement in the writing of Closing Hell's Gates: The Death of a Convict Station, Hamish Maxwell-Stewart, A&U
The University of Tasmania prize went to Lynne Andrews for her Antarctic-inspired art history book, Antarctic Eye: the Visual Journey ,Studio One
The shortlist for the biennial Tasmanian Book Prize has been announced.
In the running for the $25,000 prize, awarded to the best book with Tasmanian content in any genre, are:
Van Diemen's Land: A History, (James Boyce, Black Inc.) - Winner
Tasmanian Visions: Landscapes in Writing, Art and Photography (Roslynn D Haynes, Polymath Press)
Closing Hell's Gates: The Death of a Convict Station(Hamish Maxwell-Stewart, A&U)
Also announced were the shortlists for the Margaret Scott Prize for a writer residing in Tasmania and the University of Tasmania Prize for the best book by a Tasmanian publisher (both $5000). The shortlisted titles are:
Margaret Scott Prize
Tasmanian Visions: Landscapes in Writing, Art and Photography Roslynn D Haynes, Polymath Press- Winner
Jack Thwaites: Pioneer Tasmanian Bushwalker & Conservationist Simon Kleinig, Forty Degrees South
Closing Hell's Gates: The Death of a Convict Station, Hamish Maxwell-Stewart, A&U
The University of Tasmania Prize
Antarctic Eye: the Visual Journey , Lynne Andrews, Studio One - Winner
For the Record: James Bennell’s Buildings in Early Launceston, Helen Davies, Terrace Press
Collection Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
The winners will be announced on 4 April 2009, as part of the Ten Days on the Island Tasmanian Arts Festival.
For the best book with Tasmanian content in any genre.
- In Tasmania: Adventures at the End of the World, by Nicholas Shakespeare (right)(Knopf, 2004)
In this fascinating history of two turbulent centuries in an apparently idyllic place, Shakespeare effortlessly weaves the history of this unique island with a kaleidoscope of stories featuring a cast of unlikely characters from Errol Flynn to the King of Iceland, a village full of Chat wins and, inevitably, a family of Shakespeare's. But what makes this more than a personal quest is Shakespeare's discovery that, despite the nineteen century purges, the Tasmanian Aborigines were not, as previously believed, entirely wiped out.
Shortlisted: The Art of Apple Branding: Australian Apple Case Labels and the Industry Since 1788, by Christopher Cowles and David Walker ........ Not currently available and at a list price of $194, it's only for the true faithful any way. Looks like a fabulous book though.
Short listed: The Line: a Man's Experience; a Son's Quest to Understand, by Arch and Martin Flanagan
Winner: Twilight of Love: Travels with Turgenev, by Robert Dessaix portrait below by Robert Hanford) (Picador, 2004)
Together with Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky, Ivan Turgenev was one of the leadingnovelists of Russia's Golden Age and the first Russian writer to capture a Western audience.
No less sensational than his novels was his personal life. For forty years, until the day he died, he was passionately devoted to the diva Pauline Viardot, following her and her husband around Europe and even living with them amicably at times as part of their household. What, then, did Turgenev mean by "love," the word at the core of his life and work?
Robert Dessaix has had his own forty-year relationship with Turgenev, first as a student of Russian in both Australia and Russia, then as a teacher, and now as what he calls a close friend. In Twilight of Love, Dessaix has come to see Turgenev's life and work as an expression of a turning point in the history of love—the moment the Romantic became rational, love unraveled into sentiment and erotic feelings, and eros became a mere commodity. In this truly remarkable work, Robert Dessaix has found the pulse that quickened Turgenev’s age, but has failed in ours.
Shortlisted: Australia's Quarter Acre: The Story of the Ordinary Suburban Garden, by Peter Timms (The Miegunyah Press, 2006)- A spirited defense of the home garden, this fascinating study explains how Australia became the world's first great suburban nation, why Aussies are so passionate about roses and gladioli, how social and economic developments have altered the layouts of front and back gardens, and reasons for the slow decline of the manicured lawn and the productive home vegetable-garden. The designs, plantings, and hidden meanings of the ordinary garden are thoroughly explored, and the book offers unique new perspectives on everything from fruit trees and woodsheds to rotary clotheslines and illuminated Santas at Christmas.
'Tremors, New and Selected Poems' is the distillation of Andrew Sant's poetry published over the last twenty-five years. Rhythmically engaging, with a passion for sensual observation, his poems shift readily from seriousness to wit, and whether about music, marine biology or Martian meteorites, they reveal a speculative, questing intelligence. Welcoming his recent shorter Selected in the United Kingdom, Christopher Reid wrote 'It's full of excellences - humane, highly intelligent, artistically delicious, witty, cliche.' His wide-ranging new poems explore fresh perceptual territories.
-The Art of Apple Branding: Australian Apple Case Labels and the Industry Since 1788 by Christopher Cowles and David Walker (Apples from Oz, 2005)
- An Imperial Disaster: the Wreck of George the Third, by Michael Roe (Blubber Head Press, 2006)
- The Companion to Tasmanian History, edited by Alison Alexander (Centre for Tasmanian Historical Studies, 2005)
note: Frustratingly, none of these titles seem to be available outside the state, hence the lack of detail. I have included some links to the publishers if you would like to try and get a copy- good luck....
2007 Tasmania Book Prizes Judges
2007 Tasmania Book Prizes Advisory Committee
Prof Ralph Crane, Chair