announces 36th Annual First Novel Award finalists

Since 1976, has recognized the outstanding achievements of Canadian first-time novelists with its First Novel Award. For the past 36 years, it's launched the careers of many of Canada's most recognized and read novelists. They include Michael Ondaatje, Joan Barfoot, Joy Kogawa, W.P. Kinsella, Nino Ricci, Rohinton Mistry, Anne Michaels, Andre Alexis, Michael Redhill, Mary Lawson, Colin McAdam, Joseph Boyden, Joan Thomas and Jessica Grant.

This year' five finalists include: Fraser Nixon's The Man Who Killed (Douglas & McIntyre); Autobiography of a Childhood (Coach House Books) by Sina Queyra; Dancing Lessons (Cormorant Books) by Olive Senior; Touch (Knopf Canada) by Alexi Zentner; and The Free World (HarperCollins Canada) by David Bezmozgis. The winner will be announced in April and receive $7,500.

The jury includes head judge Stuart Woods, Quill & Quire editor; book editor, author and publisher Douglas Gibson; novelist and Toronto Life editor Nathan Whitlock; and Kelly Duffin, executive director of The Writers' Union of Canada.

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