2014 Sunburst Winners

The Sunburst Award for Excellence in Canadian Literature of the Fantastic is a juried award to recognize stellar writing in two categories: adult and young adult. The awards are presented annually to Canadian writers with a speculative fiction novel or book-length collection of speculative fiction published any time during the previous calendar year. Named after the first novel by Phyllis Gotlieb (1926–2009), one of the first published authors of contemporary Canadian science fiction, the awards consist of a cash award of Cdn$1,000 and a medallion which incorporates a specially designed “Sunburst” logo. The winners receive their awards in the fall of every year.

Winners for the 14th annual Sunburst Awards for Excellence in Canadian Literature of the Fantastic have been announced: Adult
  • A Tale for the Time Being, Ruth Ozeki (Penguin Canada)
About A Tale for the Time Being, the Sunburst jury said: Cast ashore on Vancouver Island by the Pacific Gyre, a Hello Kitty lunchbox opens upon an ocean of story, connecting Ruth and Nao across space and time. Some books flirt with the fantastic, Ozeki’s dances with it, such that it weaves through the narrative with sinuous grace, embracing evanescence. As Nao declares to the reader at the outset, “You’re my kind of time being, and together we’ll make magic.” All matters therein are given equal weight, yet the novel has a deft touch, often humorous. It is a seriously playful work. A Tale for the Time Being is sui generis, free ranging over fact and fancy, physics and metaphysics, the intimate and the universal; in a true sense it is a Zen koan extended to 422 pages, which is yet another paradox. Like the bumblebee, it shouldn’t fly but it does. Beautifully.         Young Adult

About The Cats of Tanglewood Forest, the Sunburst Jury said: A deceptively simple wish-fulfillment fantasy, The Cats of Tanglewood Forest draws upon the deep tradition of animal fables and fairy tales, upon the folklore of New World and Old, and upon the classic children’s literature of the past two centuries, but distilled into pure de Lint, faithful to its sources yet shaped by his own sensibilities. An enhancement rather than expansion of A Circle of Cats, the collaboration of writer and artist produces a fusion of word and image into a seamless whole, delighting the eye anew with the turning of each page. There are darker tones, to be sure, as snake-bite carries young Lillian past the jaws of death to the tribe of cat, and the magic of the deep wood that restores her humanity will come at a cost, and a debt owed. But that’s what a good fable is, timeless yet always cognisant of time’s passage.

Jurors for 2014 were Camille Alexa, Paul Glennon, Bob Knowlton, Nicole Luiken, and Derek Newman-Stille.

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