The Governor General's Award for literature's fiction award has had to compete with the glitzier Giller Prize since the latter award was created in 1994. But the two shortlists were decidedly different, with only [Montreal writer Rawi Hage's debut novel] De Niro's Game making both lists.Fair enough. Different strokes for different folks, right? Oho, but what have we here?
"I have a strong suspicion the Giller Prize did not look at three of the books that made our shortlist because otherwise I don't see how they could have passed them over," said [author and Governor General's Award juror Leon] Rooke...Meee-OW.
If you're not able to follow any of this, I don't blame you. Neither can I, what with not having read ANY of the novels on either shortlist and all. But that's okay. If you're in Vancouver, you can get up to speed quickly, because the International Writers & Readers Festival starts today, and a few of the shortlisted authors from both lists are in attendance, including Gaétan Soucy, Rawi Hage, and Bill Gaston.
If you want to shake things up a bit, I'd also recommend checking out David Sedaris, Anita Rau Badami, and Lisa Moore, as well as spoken word poet Shane Koyczan (and I'm not a person who recommends spoken word lightly). No word yet on whether Jackie Collins will be in attendance, but I think they're hashing out the final details of her rider. Apparently her chihuahua hates blue M&Ms.