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RBC Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction Announces its 2014 Shortlist

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RBC Taylor Prize

From our friends at the RBC Taylor Prize

Today, jurors Coral Ann Howells, James Polk and Andrew Westoll nominated five masterfully written and important works — on subjects ranging from a Victorian murder to Canada in Afghanistan — for the prestigious RBC Taylor Prize for Non-Fiction (formerly known as the Charles Taylor Prize for Non-Fiction).

Prize founder and chair of the Charles Taylor Foundation Noreen Taylor announced the 2014 RBC Taylor Prize Shortlist this morning in a press conference at the King Edward Hotel in Toronto. The following five shortlisted books were culled from 124 Canadian-authored non-fiction books submitted to this year’s Prize by 45 publishers in 2013.

The 2014 RBC Taylor Prize finalists are:

  • Charlotte Gray (Ottawa, Ontario) for The Massey Murder: A Maid, Her Master, and the Trial That Shocked a Country (HarperCollins)
  • Thomas King (Guelph, Ontario) for The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America (Doubleday Canada)
  • J.B. MacKinnon (Vancouver, BC) for The Once and Future World: Nature As It Was, As It Is, As It Could Be (Random House Canada)
  • Graeme Smith (Afghanistan) for The Dogs Are Eating Them Now: Our War in Afghanistan (Alfred A. Knopf Canada)
  • David Stouck (Vancouver, BC) for Arthur Erickson: An Architect’s Life (Douglas & McIntyre)
  • In terms of the non-fiction prize landscape, the RBC Taylor Prize list shares three titles with the Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for Nonfiction but none with the Governor General's Literary Award for non-fiction, making for an exciting and unpredictable prize announcement.

    New to the RBC Taylor Prize this year is the addition of the RBC Taylor Prize Emerging Writers Award, to be given to a promising Canadian author of non-fiction selected by the winner of the 2014 RBC Taylor Prize. The recipient of the Emerging Writers Awards will receive $10,000 and the opportunity to be mentored under the 2014 RBC Taylor Prize winner.

    About the RBC Taylor Prize:

    2014 marks the thirteenth awarding of Canada’s most prestigious award for non-fiction works. Awarded annually to the author whose book best combines a superb command of the English language, an elegance of style, and a subtlety of thought and perception, the Prize recognizes excellence in Canadian non-fiction writing and emphasizes the development of the careers of the authors it celebrates.

    The prize commemorates the life and work of the late Charles Taylor, one of Canada’s foremost essayists and a prominent member of the Canadian literary community. Charles Taylor was a foreign correspondent with The Globe and Mail and the author of four books: Radical Tories; Reporter in Red China; Six Journeys: A Canadian Pattern; and Snow Job.

    The winner of the RBC Taylor Prize receives $25,000 and the remaining finalists each receive $2,000. Finalists will be supported by extensive publicity and promotional opportunities, and will appear at The Globe and Mail / Ben McNally Authors’ Brunch on Sunday, March 9th. For tickets visit:

    The winner of the 2014 RBC Taylor Prize will be announced at a gala luncheon celebrating each of the finalists at the Omni King Edward Hotel in Toronto on Monday, March 10th. For more information visit: and follow us at

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