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2016 Shortlist for the Burt Award for Caribbean Literature Announced
The six finalists for the 2016 Burt Award for Caribbean Literature have been announced, and with them have come a little bit of history as two of the three writers were among last year’s winners. Guyana’s Imam Baksh, who won first prize with Children of the Spider and Trinidad and Tobago’s Lynn Joseph whose Dancing in the Rain copped third place both make the return trip to the increasingly coveted prize.
Both Children of the Spider and Dancing in the Rain are slated for publication this summer by Blouse and Skirt Books.
Baksh’s The Demise of the Queen’s College Adventure Club and Joseph’s The Truth Is are joined on the list by Tamika Gibson’s De First Family (Trinidad and Tobago), Danielle Y.C. McClean’s The Protector’s Pledge (Trinidad and Tobago), Carol Mitchell’s Barberry Hill (St. Kitts and Nevis) and Florenz Webbe Maxwell’s Girlcott (Bermuda).
For the second year, the list is dominated by unpublished manuscripts, highlighting that the prize is proving itself a good route for publication. Winning authors receive up to $22,000 CAD. This year the number of copies of winning titles bought by the organizing partner CODE is less than in previous years but remains significant at a total of 6,000 books.
This year’s award is adjudicated by a panel comprising editor in chief of The Caribbean Writer, Alscess Lewis Brown (chief judge), YA author Tracey Baptiste and writer, editor and composer Daniel José Older.
The winners of the 2016 Burt Award for Caribbean Literature will be announced on April 29, during the Bocas Lit Fest, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.