Congratulations to the winners of the 2022 Victoria Book Awards!

Esi Edugyan and Wendy Proverbs have won the 2022 Victoria Book Prizes.

City of Victoria Butler Book Prize Winner

The City of Victoria Butler Book Prize, worth $5,000, was awarded to Esi Edugyan for Out of the Sun: On Race and Storytelling (House of Anansi Press). Now in its 19th year, this award is presented to an author from Greater Victoria for the best published book in the categories of fiction, non-fiction or poetry.

Out of the Sun: On Race and Storytellingis an insightful exploration and moving meditation on the identity, artistry and belonging of one of the most celebrated writers of the past decade. out of the sun offers new perspectives to challenge us, examining black stories in art through the lens of visual arts, literature, film, and the author’s lived experience. In this groundbreaking, thoughtful, and scholarly book, Esi Edugyan illuminates the myriad varieties of the black experience in global culture and history.

A graduate of Johns Hopkins University and the University of Victoria, Esi Edugyan is also the author of Half-Blood Blues, Dreaming Elsewhere and Washington Black, which won the 2018 Scotiabank Giller Prize and was shortlisted for the Rogers Writers’ Trust and Man Booker Awards. She has been a fellow in the United States, Scotland, Iceland, Germany, Hungary, Finland, Spain and Belgium.

Winner of the City of Victoria Children’s Book Award

The $5,000 City of Victoria Children’s Book Prize went to Wendy Proverbs for Aggie and Mudgy: the journey of two children Kaska Dena (Heritage House). Now in its 15th year, this award is given to an author or illustrator from Greater Victoria for the best children’s book.

Aggie and Mudgy is based on the true story of the author’s biological mother and aunt. This novel for young readers traces the long and frightening journey of two Kaska Dena sisters as they are taken from their home to attend boarding school. When Maddy discovers an old photo of two little girls in her grandmother’s belongings, she wants to know who they are. Nan reluctantly agrees to tell her the story, though she’s not sure if Maddy is ready to hear it. The girls in the photo, Aggie and Mudgy, were taken from their families at a young age to attend boarding school, where they endured years of isolation and abuse.

Wendy Proverbs is an emerging Indigenous writer of Kaska Dena descent. She holds a BA and MA in Anthropology from the University of Victoria. Like thousands of Indigenous people across Canada, as a child she was caught up in the wave of Indigenous children taken from their biological families and only reunited with her biological family members as than a young adult. She has acted as a community liaison with Indigenous communities and strives to help younger generations, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, learn more about their past. Aggie and Mudgy is his first novel.

Find out more about the Victoria Book Prizes here.

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