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2023 Governor General's Literary Awards Announced with Big Wins for House of Anansi Press

the seven books that won the 2023 Governor General's literary awards, side by side

Today the Canada Council for the Arts announced the winners of the 2023 Governor General's Literary Awards in both English and French. Whittled down from the shortlist, which included five books nominated in each of seven categories for English language writing, this year's winners will join past GGbooks alumni like Alice Munro, Mordecai Richler, Margaret Laurence, Rohinton Mistry, and Miriam Toews, to name just a few winners from the venerable awards' 87 year history. Each winning writer, translator or illustrator will also receive a $25,000 prize. Publishers receive $3,000 to promote the winning book; finalists receive $1,000 each. 

Notable this year are two of the awards going to debut authors from the same independent publishing house, Toronto's House of Anansi Press: Anuja Varghese, whose story collection Chrysalis won the fiction prize, and Hannah Green, whose debut collection, Xanax Cowboy, won the poetry award. 

English-language Governor General's Literary Award Winners for 2023:


Chrysalis by Anuja Varghese (Hamilton, Ontario) House of Anansi Press


Xanax Cowboy by Hannah Green (Winnipeg, Manitoba) House of Anansi Press


William Shakespeareʼs As You Like It: A Radical Retelling by Cliff Cardinal (Toronto, Ontario) Playwrights Canada Press


Unearthing by Kyo Maclear (Toronto, Ontario) Knopf, Penguin Random House Canada

Young People’s Literature – Text:

The Probability of Everything by Sarah Everett (Edmonton, Alberta) Clarion Books, HarperCollins

Young People’s Literature – Illustrated Books:

When You Can Swim by Jack Wong (Halifax, Nova Scotia) Scholastic Canada

Translation (from French to English):

Rosaʼs Very Own Personal Revolution by Peter McCambridge (Québec City, Quebec) QC Fiction, Baraka Books. A translation of La logeuse, by Éric Dupont

For more information, including the full list of French language winners, please visit the Canada Council for the Arts online.