The RBC Taylor Prize is a Canadian Literary Award, presented by the Charles Taylor Foundation to the Best Canadian work of literary non-fiction. The prize was inaugurated in 2000, and was presented biennially till 2004, after which it became an annual award.
RBC Taylor Prize 2019 Jurors Camilla Gibb, Roy MacGregor and Beverley McLachlin shared the longlist for the eighteenth awarding of Canada’s most prestigious non-fiction prize.
The jury reviewed over 100 books to reach this longlist and state that “It was no small task whittling down to this longlist of ten, and we anticipate many hours of re-reading and debate before we produce our short list, and, ultimately, the winner. We found the books breath-taking in their range of topics, and happily found so many of them serve as a useful barometer for current issues, from reconciliation to political trust. There is remarkable achievement here and we hope readers will celebrate that with us. “
The longlist books for the 2019 RBC Taylor Prize are:
1. Son of a Critch: A Childish Newfoundland Memoir, by Mark Critch, published by Viking/Penguin Canada
2. Just Let Me Look at You: On Fatherhood, by Bill Gaston, published by Hamish Hamilton/Penguin Canada
3. Jan in 35 Pieces: A Memoir in Music, by Ian Hampton, published by Porcupine’s Quill
4. Lands of Lost Borders: Out of Bounds on the Silk Roads, by Kate Harris, published by Knopf Canada.
5. All Things Consoled: A Daughter’s Memoir, by Elizabeth Hay, published by McClelland & Stewart
6. Trust: Twenty Ways to Build a Better Country, by David Johnston, published by Signal/M&S **
7. Seeking the Fabled City: The Canadian Jewish Experience, by Allan Levine, published by McClelland and Stewart
8. Power, Prime Ministers and the Press: The Battle for Truth on Parliament Hill, by Robert Lewis, published by Dundurn Press.
9. Heart Berries: A Memoir, by Terese Marie Mailhot, published by Doubleday Canada
10. Mamaskatch: A Cree Coming of Age, by Darrel McLeod, published by Douglas & MacIntyre.
Noreen Taylor, chair of the Charles Taylor Foundation and founder of the Prize, commented: “What an amazing breadth of offerings this year. I can hardly wait to dive into the books I haven’t already read! Looking at this list it’s definitely going to be a busy holiday. What is so interesting is that this list reflects what Canadians are experiencing, worrying about and/or enjoying currently, and reminds Canadian readers how fortunate we are to have amongst us so many gifted and unique storytellers. Here’s to our publishers and their many distinct imprints for releasing a panorama of fascinating titles, and bravo to our jurors who performed the Herculean task of selecting this remarkable long list from amongst over 100 titles.”
Vijay Parmar, president of RBC PH&N Investment Counsel, added: “Once again, we have a longlist that showcases our national collective voice and the power that storytelling has to change our understanding and challenge our perspectives. Congratulations to the 2019 long-listed authors and thanks to our esteemed jurors for their time, dedication and reflection.”Key Dates: The RBC Taylor Prize Shortlist will be announced at a news conference on Wednesday, January 9, 2019, and the winner revealed at a gala luncheon on Monday March 4, 2019.