“Annabel Lyon’s Aristotle is the most fully-realized historical character in contemporary fiction. The Golden Mean engenders in the reader the same helpless sensitivity to the ferocious beauty of the world that is Aristotle’s disease. In this alarmingly confident and transporting debut novel, Lyon offers us that rarest of treats: a book about philosophy, about the power of ideas, that chortles and sings like an earthy romance.”
-2009 Jury (Marina Endicott, Miriam Toews and R.M. Vaughan)
“a lively, well-researched blend of memoir and socio-political commentary; a rare celebration of youth, age, and the tumultuous, surprising journey between them.”
– 2009 Jury (Tim Bowling, Anne Hart and Bruce Meyer)
“David Bergen is a writer trying to work things out that interest him. When you read what his characters are doing and thinking, you realize the core of a story is never what the story is about. A man and a woman may be trying to sleep with each other in rural Canada but one of them is thinking of a mare being inseminated then whipped with horseshoes in southern Egypt. This image and its residual feeling suggests the larger world within the intimate one David Bergen’s characters are living in as they learn to love and hate and love each other again.
Bergen’s material is both mundane and wild, tactile and complex, and he combines techniques of craft using flat surfaces with complex patterns of the psyche to create the world as he sees it, which happens to be a way none of us have ever thought of seeing it before. How does Bergen do it? How does he apply his interests and subject matter, so varied and widespread, so fantastic in ways, erotic and psychological, and make them our concerns? This mystery is at the heart of a very well crafted realism, and
David Bergen is, simply put, one of our best modern writers”
-2009 Writers’ Trust Notable Author Award Jury (Diane Schoemperlen, Rudy Wiebe and Michael Winter)
“In her more than twenty books for preschoolers, elementary school children and young adults, Jocelyn demonstrates a rich versatility with genre, medium and style. She has published compelling narratives in a wide range of genres, including young adult realism, historical fiction, biography/memoir, fantasy and picture books. The emotional range of tone in her work is as broad and deep as her exploration of genre: she writes with equal conviction in the voice of satire, comedy and tragedy. Inventiveness, humour, and a sharp understanding of human nature underlie her work for all ages.
She is a visual artist as well as a verbal one, as her numerous picture books show. Her collage art glories in the beauty and grace of the child’s domain, rich in artefacts, objects of play and contemplation. Her subtle use of endpapers and framing, textured materials, fabrics and found objects — her use of real “kid things” — creates a visual world of identity, interest and choice, showing the creative possibilities and thoughtfulness in the child’s world.”
– 2009 Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature Jury (Deirdre Baker, Julie Johnston and Judith Saltman)