Monday, November 8, 2010

Winner of the Young Adult 2010 Prime Minister's Literary Awards

For a refresher, here's the list of books nominated for the award:

Young adult fiction

It's the first year there has been a Young Adult prize, so no previous winners :) 

It's a really tough competition with the standard of the short lists being so high. 

  • My personal favourite on this list is Beatle Meets Destiny
  • I thought Stolen was exceptional
  • Jarvis 24 and Swerve are two brilliant male POV's (Jarvis 24 won the CBCA for older readers this year)
  • I've read all except for two: The Museum of Mary Child by Cassandra Gold, and Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God by Bill Condon.

Anyways, on to the winner (which includes a 100k tax free cash prize)

I have this annoying problem that gives me a lot of trouble: a conscience. 

Neil Bridges attends a Catholic boys’ school in which teachers rule with iron fists and thick leather straps. Some crumble under the pressure but Neil toughs it out, just as his Vietnam-bound older brother has done before him. He has to be a man, after all. But at sixteen, how can he be sure of himself when he’s not sure of anything else? 
He loses a friend and finds another, falls in love and unwittingly treads a path that leads to revenge and possibly murder . . . (from goodreads)
And the judge's comments:

Judges’ comments

Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God is a poignant, funny and deeply insightful rite of passage novel. Set in 1967, the author makes it seem contemporary, skilfully employing a nuanced first-person narration. Neil Bridges attends a Catholic boys’ school where classmate Ray (Zom) is accused by a Brother of stealing a wallet and is expelled after a fight with his accuser. Neil knows who stole the wallet, but refuses to tell. Ray’s father is so ashamed that Ray is cut off from his family – save for his older sister Sylvana. Neil falls in love with Sylvana, but, implicated in Ray’s disgrace, his loyalties and motives are deeply conflicted. The pain of first love, and the morality attached to individual life choices, is evoked with real empathy. Confessionsof a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God also portrays the strength of ordinary families and the love even between warring brothers. There’s a poignant hint too, of more loss ahead, in Neil’s brother Kevin’s conscription for the Vietnam War. Condon declines to indulge in historical revisionism, while the economical prose attains a rhythm that is almost poetry. The short, chiselled chapters ensure that not a word is wasted. Condon is a writer of considerable craft who eschews the flamboyant in search of deeper truths.

Congrats to Bill Condon and to all authors short-listed :)


  1. I haven't read anything on that list. I am going to have to add Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God to my list.

    Thanks for sharing the results :)

  2. Confessions sounds really interesting! I haven't read any of the books listed so I'll have to check those out. :)

  3. it sounds really good. jarvis 24 was great, a really believable male protag.


Thanks for the commenty love :)