WCA is thrilled to announce that Rosemary Sullivan and John Ibbitson are finalists for the BC National Non-Fiction Award, one of the largest non-fiction book prizes in the country.
John Ibbitson is nominated Stephen Harper, and Rosemary Sullivan for Stalin’s Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva. Congratulations to Rosemary and John!
The finalists were chosen by an independent jury and the winner of the 2016 prize will be announced at a special presentation ceremony in Vancouver on February 4, 2016.
The finalists are described in the following citations from the jury panel:
“This book describes a contradictory prime minister in a contradictory country, and is narrated with great skill, executed with exacting even-handedness, and founded on detailed research that will tell most readers far more than they already know. Ibbitson describes the Harper we think we know – as mean, and as taking little pleasure in others. Then he tells us what we might not know – that Harper loves to talk to and play with children; that he favoured Israel in part to win the approval of his father, that despite ‘despicable acts’ that included a public scrap with Chief Justice Beverly McLaughlin and cancelling Statistic Canada’s long-form census, he handled the economy well (at least until oil prices plummeted). A more difficult biography to undertake would be hard to imagine, but John Ibbitson, Ottawa columnist for The Globe and Mail, has pulled off the near impossibility of a first rate biography of a man who inspired anger and fear, and whose departure from politics is little mourned.”
“This comprehensive biography delivers sharply observed and meticulously researched revelations about Svetlana Alliluyeva, daughter of Josef Stalin. Born in 1921, Svetlana defected from the USSR to the United States in her 40s – leaving her young son and daughter behind – but she was never able to escape her father’s brutal legacy or avoid being used by governments and others in furtherance of their own goals and ideologies. Sullivan draws from many sources, including KGB, CIA, and Soviet archives and Svetlana’s family and friends, to create an intimate portrait of a participant in and victim of some of the greatest geo-political upheavals of the 20th Century. This book provides unique insights, and deeply contributes to our understanding of many significant events of the past century.”