Giller Prize Longlist, 2012
Annotation:**WINNER** When Laura's father gets caught up in a swindle and pays with his life, she is forced to leave the comfort of North America to make a journey deep into the dangerous back streets and alleyways of the Lagos underworld to confront her father's killer. What she finds will change her life forever.
Annotation:**Short-listed title** When a young, enigmatic woman arrives in post-war Montreal, it is immediately clear that she is not who she claims to be. Her attempt to live out her life as Lily Azerov shatters as she disappears, leaving a new husband and baby daughter, and a host of unanswered questions. Who is she really and what happened to the young woman whose identity she has stolen? It is left to the daughter she abandoned to find the answers to these questions as she searches for the mother she may never find or really know.
Annotation:**Short-listed title** Poignantly explores the manifold dangers and imperatives of making ourselves available to, and indeed responsible for, those dearest to us. Four complex characters travel from Montreal and New York to Hollywood and Rwanda, each of them with a consciousness that is utterly distinct and urgently convincing.
Annotation:**Short-listed title** Kim Thuy's Governor General's Literary Award-winning Ru is a lullaby for Vietnam and a love letter to a new homeland. In vignettes of exquisite clarity, sharp observation and sly wit, we are carried along on an unforgettable journey from a palatial residence in Saigon to a crowded and muddy Malaysian refugee camp, and onward to a new life in Quebec.
Annotation:**Short-listed title** Stories showing what happens when people's personal coping skills go awry. These are people who discover their anchor-chain has broken: characters safe in the world of self-deception or even self-delusion, forced to face the fact that their main line of defence has become their greatest weakness.
Annotation:When a rich American doctor decides to build a gargantuan new radio tower in a tiny Mexico border town, fortunes change overnight. Yet not all for the good - word of the new prosperity spreads, and Corazon is overrun by the impoverished, the desperate, and the criminal-minded.
Annotation:Like his father before him, Octavio runs the Notre-Dame bakery, and knows the secret recipe for the perfect Parisian baguette. But, also like his father, Octavio has never mastered the art of reading and his only knowledge of the world beyond the bakery door comes from his own imagination. Just a few streets away, Isabeau works out of sight in the basement of the Louvre, trying to forget her disfigured beauty by losing herself in the paintings she restores and the stories she reads. The two might never have met, but for a curious chain of coincidences involving a mysterious traveller, an impoverished painter, a jaded bookseller, and a book of fairytales, lost and found . . .
Annotation:After a car crash leaves their friend Marcus dead and his wife Sarah in a coma, Ana and James are shocked to discover that they have become the legal guardians of the couple's toddler, Finn. Finn's crash-landing in their lives throws into high relief deeply rooted and long-hidden truths about themselves both as individuals and as a couple. A fresh and perceptive examination of ambivalence toward parenthood.
Annotation:Cary Fagan began his writing career with the short story and now, after five novels, he returns to his first love. A woman leaves her husband, a retired judge, when he refuses to give up his passion for performing as a magician. A young man exiled from the downtown arts scene finds himself living in the suburbs in a community of new immigrants. A widow moves to New York to confront the woman who was her late husband's mistress. A bank manager in a bad situation turns to his childhood obsession with Jane Goodall for inspiration.
Annotation:The child of 2 con artists, 16-year-old Sammie Bell always prided herself on knowing the score. But now she finds herself backed into a corner.With her mother an aloholic and her father missing in action, she has nowhere else to go but the home of a friend with 2 parents who seem to actually love their daughter and each other--and who awkwardly try to extend some semblance of family to Sammie.
Annotation:The Erskine clan has lived in isolation on North Mountain for generations. Now, one man decides to come down off the mountain hoping to change the future for his brothers and sisters.
Annotation:“The intimate and the infinite are tangled together in this incandescent book, lit by Aristotle’s bright spark of a daughter. Lucid even in nightmare, The Sweet Girl slips sideways around the philosopher to examine the lives of girls and women when we were not yet human.” —Marina Endicott, author of The Little Shadows and Good to a Fault
Annotation:"My life begins at the Y." So begins the story of Shannon, a newborn baby dumped at the doors of the YMCA. Bounced between foster homes, Shannon defines life on her own terms even as she longs to uncover her roots. The answers lie in the heartbreaking tale of her mother, a girl herself and one with a desperate fate.
Enjoy this "wonderfully diverse collection of fiction by formidably talented writers," as announced by the jurors of the 2012 Scotiabank Giller Prize on September 4, 2012. Will Ferguson's novel, 419, was chosen as the winner on October 30th.