Posted by: Lisa Hill | November 2, 2018

2018 Barbara Jefferis Award winner

The Barbara Jefferis Award celebrates women in literature and is awarded biennially for “the best novel written by an Australian author that depicts women and girls in a positive way or otherwise empowers the status of women and girls in society.”

The Award is named for highly regarded author Barbara Jefferis, a founding member and executive director of the Australian Society of Authors (ASA), and it is made possible by the generosity of John Hinde’s bequest (Barbara’s husband).  (I have recently acquired two of Barbara Jefferis’s novels: Solo for Several Players (1961) and Three of a Kind (1982). I can’t decide which one to read first.)

It’s a generous prize: the winner receives a prize of $50,000 and the shortlisted authors share $5,000.

This year the shortlist consisted of:

The Trapeze Act by Libby Angel (Text Publishing)
Troppo by Madelaine Dickie (Fremantle Press), update 1/10/20, see my review
Storyland by Catherine McKinnon (HarperCollins), see my review
From the Wreck by Jane Rawson (Transit Lounge), see my review
Goodwood by Holly Throsby (Allen & Unwin).

And the winner is: Libby Angel for The Trapeze Act.  Congratulations!


  1. Ah, I was looking out for this but hadn’t put the date in my reminder system. I’ve only read two too. I don’t think I’ve seen reviews of the winner, but as you say, congratulations, to her anyhow.


    • I was a bit disappointed to see how little attention it got at Twitter. This is a good prize, and it deserves better publicity than it’s getting.

      I have to confess that I had a copy of the winner, and read about 50 pages of it but didn’t finish it. Just not the right book for me, was what I wrote at Goodreads, or maybe not the right time. Travellin’ Penguin has a copy, so maybe a fresh opinion on it will pique my interest again?


  2. I recently won The Trapeze Act from the Tas Writers Centre. Guess I should read it. It does sound interesting.


    • Please let me know when/if you review it and I’ll link to it from here:)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This should be the Australian Legend’s favourite prize (though I have a sneaking affection for the Stella). Next time I’m home I’ll get Troppo and write a report (hope it’s as good as my previous new WA-ian, Rubik).


    • Yes, well, one can make a case that the Stella has stolen the BJA’s thunder because we don’t see social media light up for it as it should even though the BJA is a long-standing award that has the feminist agenda at its heart. So I’m glad to hear you’ll being doing Troppo and will link to yours as soon as your review is up:)


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