Posted by: Lisa Hill | May 29, 2017

2017 Australian Book Design Awards winners

There are too many categories for the 2017 Australian Book Design Awards for me to cover them all here, so I’ll just share the winners of the Literary Fiction and Non Fiction categories.

The winner of the Best Designed Literary Fiction Book sponsored by Inkerman & Blunt is Sandy Cull for The Museum of Modern Love,  (Allen & Unwin).    It’s a terrific book here, collecting prizes all over the place.  See my review here.    

The winner of the Best Designed Non Fiction Book sponsored by Affirm Press is Mary Callahan for The Art of Reading, (Melbourne University Press).    This is a fascinating book for anyone who cares about reading, see my review here.

Sandy Cull took out another award as the winner of the Best Designed Series sponsored by 1010 Printing for The Wisdom Tree Series, (Inkerman & Blunt).  (See my reviews of Venice and Gotham too).  

To see the winners in the other categories visit the ABDA website, and you can also see the shortlisted designs from their LHS menu.


  1. Thanks for this Lisa. I wrote a post recently about the short list, but as you say the categories are never-ending so you really can’t write them all. I think Affirm Press has won before – great to see a small publisher putting such consideration into design. Each of those three covers you show is impressive, and presumably their internal design is excellent as well


  2. I think it’s quite noticeable that small publishers are leading the way with design. It’s the big companies that do those dreary back-view-of-a-woman Getty image covers…


  3. Is the cover of Venice a line drawing? i can’t quite tell from the image here but I’m hoping it is …. I prefer them to graphic design covers


    • I can’t tell either. This was actually a book sent to me in PDF form – and of all forms of eReading I *hate* reading PDFs the most. In proper book form I can imagine running my fingers over the raised lines, I love that feeling under my fingertips when I’m reading.


      • PDF reading smacks too much of ‘work’. Hope this doesnt become a trend


        • I just find them really hard to read. I think it’s amazing that publishers can read a book in MS form and judge whether it’s good for publishing or destined for the slush pile. For me, there’s something about the shape and heft of a real book that’s essential to the reading of it. Maybe I should call myself Lisa the Luddite, but it’s part of what I love about books.


          • If you decide to form a luddite club, I’ll be happy to sign up


            • *chuckle* I’ll bear that in mind. (Though I must say, the fancy things you’ve been doing on your blog don’t look very luddite-ish.)


              • I have a helping hand via my husband ….


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