AustLit logo
Australian Book of the Year
Subcategory of Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA)
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

Latest Winners / Recipients

Year: 2021

winner Julia Baird

Year: 2020

winner y separately published work icon The Beach Bluey : The Beach Melbourne : Puffin , 2019 18743284 2019 single work picture book children's

'While Mum is off for a walk along the beach, Bluey discovers a beautiful shell. She runs to show Mum and has a series of encounters that will both excite and test her in unexpected ways.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

Year: 2019

winner y separately published work icon Boy Swallows Universe Trent Dalton , Sydney South : Fourth Estate , 2018 13529833 2018 single work novel

'Brisbane, 1983: A lost father, a mute brother, a mum in jail, a heroin dealer for a stepfather and a notorious crim for a babysitter. It's not as if Eli's life isn't complicated enough already. He's just trying to follow his heart, learning what it takes to be a good man, but life just keeps throwing obstacles in the way - not least of which is Tytus Broz, legendary Brisbane drug dealer.

'But if Eli's life is about to get a whole lot more serious. He's about to fall in love. And, oh yeah, he has to break into Boggo Road Gaol on Christmas Day, to save his mum.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

Year: 2018

winner y separately published work icon Nevermoor : The Trials of Morrigan Crow Jessica Townsend , Sydney : Lothian , 2017 11160400 2017 single work children's fiction children's fantasy

'Morrigan Crow is cursed. Having been born on Eventide, the unluckiest day for any child to be born, she's blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks–and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on her eleventh birthday. But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away into the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor. It's then that Morrigan discovers Jupiter has chosen her to contend for a place in the city's most prestigious organisation: the Wundrous Society. In order to join, she must compete in four difficult and dangerous trials against hundreds of other children, each boasting an extraordinary talent that sets them apart–an extraordinary talent that Morrigan insists she does not have. To stay in the safety of Nevermoor for good, Morrigan will need to find a way to pass the tests–or she'll have to leave the city to confront her deadly fate.' (Publication summary)

Year: 2017

winner y separately published work icon The Dry Jane Harper , Sydney : Macmillan Australia , 2016 9592721 2016 single work novel detective

'WHO REALLY KILLED THE HADLER FAMILY?

'Luke Hadler turns a gun on his wife and child, then himself. The farming community of Kiewarra is facing life and death choices daily. If one of their own broke under the strain, well ...

'When Federal Police investigator Aaron Falk returns to Kiewarra for the funerals, he is loath to confront the people who rejected him twenty years earlier. But when his investigative skills are called on, the facts of the Hadler case start to make him doubt this murder-suicide charge.

'And as Falk probes deeper into the killings, old wounds are reopened. For Falk and his childhood friend Luke shared a secret ... A secret Falk thought long-buried ... A secret which Luke's death starts to bring to the surface ...' (Publication summary)

Works About this Award

Magda Szubanski May Leave Australia If Changes to Book Industry Go Ahead Steph Harmon , Lucy Clark , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 20 May 2016;

'Magda Szubanski said she would consider leaving the country and called for writers to go on strike. Richard Flanagan called for the resignation of arts minister, Mitch Fifield. Tim Winton said the Turnbull government was about to kick a “massive own goal”.'

'On a night designed to celebrate the triumphs of Australian literary culture, there was no escaping the overriding message of doom: that the Australian book industry is in peril because of proposed changes to copyright law and import restrictions. ...'

Magda Szubanski's Memoir Reckoning Finds Its Place in the World of Winners Susan Wyndham , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: Brisbane Times , 20 May 2016;
'Magda Szubanski began the week at the State Library of NSW with Premier Mike Baird holding up her mobile phone so her mother could hear her acceptance speech when she won the non-fiction prize in the NSW Premier's Literary Awards for her memoir Reckoning. ...'
X