Posted by: Lisa Hill | February 22, 2021

2021 Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) Longlist

My goodness, it’s a busy night tonight!

The 2021 Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) Longlist has been announced. A shortlist will be released on Monday 12 April, with winners announced on Wednesday 28 April.

Though some are on my TBR, I’ve read only two of them.  But then, I tend not to, with nominees for this award, because I read a lot from small publishers, and it’s the big conglomerates that dominate these awards.  But Theresa Smith has read quite a number of them, so visit her site to see her reviews. 

Literary Fiction Book of the Year

  • A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing, Jessie Tu (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin)
  • A Room Made of Leaves, Kate Grenville (Text Publishing, Text Publishing)
  • All Our Shimmering Skies, Trent Dalton (HarperCollins Publishers, Fourth Estate)
  • Honeybee, Craig Silvey (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin)
  • Infinite Splendours, Sofie Laguna (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin)
  • Song of the Crocodile, Nardi Simpson (Hachette Australia Pty Ltd, Hachette Australia), on my TBR, see my review
  • Sorrow and Bliss, Meg Mason (HarperCollins Publishers, Fourth Estate)
  • The Last Migration, Charlotte McConaghy (Penguin Random House, Hamish Hamilton)

General Non-fiction Book of the Year

  • Fire Country, Victor Steffensen (Hardie Grant Publishing, Hardie Grant Travel)
  • My Tidda, My Sister, Marlee Silva; Illustrated by Rachael Sarra (Hardie Grant Publishing, Hardie Grant Travel)
  • One Day I’ll Remember This: Diaries 1987–1995, Helen Garner (Text Publishing, Text Publishing)
  • Phosphorescence: On awe, wonder and things that sustain you when the world goes dark, Julia Baird (HarperCollins Publishers, Fourth Estate)
  • The Golden Maze: A biography of Prague, Richard Fidler (HarperCollins Publishers, ABC Books)
  • The Space Between, Michelle Andrews and Zara McDonald (Penguin Random House, Viking)
  • Un-cook Yourself: A Ratbag’s Rules for Life, Nat’s What I Reckon (Penguin Random House, Ebury Australia)
  • Women and Leadership, Julia Gillard and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (Penguin Random House, Vintage Australia)

The Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year

  • A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing, Jessie Tu (Allen & Unwin)
  • Lucky’s, Andrew Pippos (Pan Macmillan Australia, Picador Australia), see my review
  • My Tidda, My Sister, Marlee Silva; Illustrated by Rachael Sarra (Hardie Grant Publishing, Hardie Grant Travel)
  • Song of the Crocodile, Nardi Simpson (Hachette Australia Pty Ltd, Hachette Australia), on my TBR, see my review
  • The Coconut Children, Vivian Pham (Penguin Random House, Vintage Australia), abandoned
  • The Grandest Bookshop in the World, Amelia Mellor (Affirm Press, Affirm Press)
  • The Happiest Man on Earth, Eddie Jaku (Pan Macmillan Australia, Macmillan Australia)
  • The Morbids, Ewa Ramsey (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin), on order, see my review

Small Publishers’ Adult Book of the Year

  • Glimpses of Utopia: Real ideas for a fairer world, Jess Scully (Pantera Press, Pantera Press)
  • Living on Stolen Land, Ambelin Kwaymullina (Magabala Books), on my TBR, see my review
  • Stone Sky Gold Mountain, Mirandi Riwoe (University of Queensland Press, UQP), on my TBR
  • The Animals in That Country, Laura Jean McKay (Scribe Publications, Scribe Publications)
  • The Rain Heron, Robbie Arnott (Text Publishing, Text Publishing), on my TBR
  • What Is To Be Done: political engagement and saving the planet, Barry Jones (Scribe Publications, Scribe Publications)
  • Where the Fruit Falls, Karen Wyld (UWA Publishing, UWA Publishing), see my review
  • Yornadaiyn Woolagoodja, Yornadaiyn Woolagoodja (Magabala Books), see my review

Biography Book of the Year

  • A Bigger Picture, Malcolm Turnbull (Hardie Grant)
  • A Repurposed Life, Ronni Kahn with Jessica Chapnik Kahn (Allen & Unwin, Murdoch Books)
  • Boy on Fire: The Young Nick Cave, Mark Mordue (HarperCollins Publishers, Fourth Estate)
  • Fourteen, Shannon Molloy (Simon & Schuster Australia, Simon & Schuster Australia)
  • Paul Kelly, Stuart Coupe (Hachette Australia Pty Ltd, Hachette Australia)
  • Soar: A Life Freed by Dance, David McAllister with Amanda Dunn (Thames & Hudson Australia )
  • The Happiest Man on Earth, Eddie Jaku (Pan Macmillan Australia)
  • Truganini, Cassandra Pybus (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin), on my TBR

General Fiction Book of the Year

  • The Bluffs, Kyle Perry (Penguin Random House, Michael Joseph)
  • The Dictionary of Lost Words, Pip Williams (Affirm Press, Affirm Press), see my review
  • The Godmothers, Monica McInerney (Penguin Random House, Michael Joseph)
  • The Good Turn, Dervla McTiernan (HarperCollins Publishers, HarperCollins Publishers)
  • The Morbids, Ewa Ramsey (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin), on order, see my review
  • The Mother Fault, Kate Mildenhall (Simon & Schuster Australia, Simon & Schuster Australia)
  • The Survivors, Jane Harper (Pan Macmillan Australia, Macmillan Australia)
  • Trust, Chris Hammer (Allen & Unwin, Allen & Unwin

Responses

  1. A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing and The Morbids being in the same category… hhmmmm!

    Like

  2. I’ve only read The Happiest Man, Phospherescence and Truganini. A couple of others are on our book club list for later in the year. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

    • I must get to Trugannini… what did you think of it?
      (And yay for your book club getting back together again!!)

      Like

  3. I hope Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason is on you TBR list Lisa? The more people who hear about this book the better. I agree with Theresa Smith when she says “If there is one book you should read this year this is it”. The title is so apt; one minute your heart is breaking for the main character and then you can’t help laughing at the antics of her “no- holds- barred” sister. It’s the most deliciously described sister relationship you’ll find in a modern novel.

    Like

    • Ah, no, sorry, it’s not. It doesn’t appeal at all.
      And as you say, Theresa loved it, and so does Kate from Books are My Favourite and Best, so it’s getting plenty of love elsewhere.

      Like

  4. I have read a few of these. ‘Song of the Crocodile’ is my current favourite.

    Liked by 1 person


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