This is an update to my previous blog You’re Invited: 2011 Toronto Book Awards Reading Event & Gala.

Congratulations to Rabindranath Maharaj for winning the 2011 Toronto Book Award of $11,000!

Last night at the awards gala in Toronto Reference Library’s Appel Salon, Rabindranath Maharaj received the 2011 Toronto Book Award for his novel, The Amazing Absorbing Boy (Knopf Canada).

The Amazing Absorbing Boy was chosen from 78 book submissions because:

  • it’s a great story about Toronto;
  • the novel gives a unique perspective about our diverse city, Toronto;
  • Maharaj creates a complex, witty and hopeful portrait of an imaginative youth determined to forge his own path in multi-cultural Toronto.
  • and fulfills the Toronto Book Awards theme: “to get a new read on Toronto as well as give the community an opportunity to discover Toronto’s diversity through the eyes of authors.”

Please click here for more information about the Toronto Book Awards and what the jury members said about all of the books.

2011 Toronto Book Award: "The Amazing Absorbing Boy" Novel

2011 Toronto Book Award: "The Amazing Absorbing Boy" Novel

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

News Release

October 13, 2011

Rabindranath Maharaj named recipient of the 2011 Toronto Book Award

Rabindranath Maharaj was named the recipient of the 2011 Toronto Book Award for his novel The Amazing Absorbing Boy tonight at a reception at Toronto Reference Library’s Appel Salon.

“I want to congratulate Rabindranath Maharaj for his wonderful novel The Amazing Absorbing Boy,” said Councillor Gary Crawford, representing Mayor Rob Ford and Toronto City Council. “His book gives a unique perspective about our diverse city, and was selected from 78 book submissions. All of these authors tell great stories about Toronto and can be very proud of their work.”

Toronto Public Library’s City Librarian Jane Pyper commented, “In this clear-eyed look at Toronto as it appears to a young Trinidadian immigrant, Rabindranath Maharaj has given all of us a new way of seeing our city. I congratulate him on this fine novel.”

The 2011 Toronto Book Awards Committee, made up of members Michael Booth, Tina Edan, Angela Rebeiro, Kristine Thornley and Karen Tisch, volunteered their time to read all of the books and select the shortlist and winner. They commented on how Maharaj creates a complex, witty and hopeful portrait of an imaginative youth determined to forge his own path in multi-cultural Toronto.

Rabindranath Maharaj is the author of five novels and three short story collections. His books have been nominated for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, the Rogers Fiction Prize, the Chapters/Books in Canada First Novel Award, and the Bocas Literature Award. His most recent novel also won the 2011 Trillium English Language Fiction Prize. Maharaj’s The Amazing Absorbing Boy (Knopf Canada) was chosen from a list of finalists that included James FitzGerald for What Disturbs Our Blood (Random House Canada); James King for Étienne’s Alphabet (Cormorant Books Inc.); Nicholas Ruddock for The Parabolist (Doubleday Canada); and Alissa York for Fauna (Random House Canada).

This year marks the 37th anniversary of the Toronto Book Awards. Established by Toronto City Council in 1974, the Toronto Book Awards honour authors of books of literary or artistic merit that are evocative of Toronto. The annual awards offer $15,000 in prize money. Each finalist receives $1,000, and the winning author receives $11,000. For more information about the awards and what the jury members said about all of the books, visit www.toronto.ca/book_awards.

Toronto Public Library is the world’s busiest urban public library system. Every year, more than 18 million people visit branches in neighbourhoods across the city and borrow more than 32 million items. As cornerstones of their neighbourhoods, our libraries connect people to each other and to their community, inspiring the spirit of exploration, the joy of reading and the pursuit of knowledge for people of all ages and backgrounds. To learn more, please visit www.torontopubliclibrary.ca or call Answerline at 416-393-7131.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. Toronto’s government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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You’re Invited: 2011 Toronto Book Awards Reading Event & Gala

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