It’s been a great year for the Sunshine Coast’s Harbour Publishing.
Last week, the prestigious BC Book Prizes shortlist was released and Har-bour received numerous nominations, not only for its own titles, but also for its latest acquisition, Douglas & McIntyre (D & M).
Last month they acquired the B.C. publishing imprint, giving them 500 new books and 300 writers to promote — a major adjustment for the Madeira Park publisher, now one of the biggest in the province.
One book that rose to the top of the list in two nomination categories is Bruno and the Beach: The Beachcombers at 40, by Marc Strange, script writer, and Jackson Davies, starring actor. The book that tells the story of the long running CBC TV series filmed on the Sunshine Coast flew out of bookstores in December.
Harbour Publishing publisher Howard White is gratified at the response.
“I knew it was a really good book, but I was worried that it might be dismissed as something lightweight about a long ago series,” White said.
White regards the show as a watershed in Canadian TV and is gratified that the book’s driving force, Davies, has had his faith in the project rewarded.
The Bill Duthie Book-sellers’ Choice Award category, presented to the publisher and author of the best book in terms of public appeal, initiative, design, production and content, includes the following nominations along with the Beachcombers’ book: British Columbia: A New Historical Atlas by Derek Hayes (D & M), Exploring Vancouver: The Architectural Guide, by Harold Kalman and Robin Ward (D & M) and Trucking in British Columbia: An Illustrated History, by Daniel Francis (Harbour).
Harbour and Douglas & McIntyre both received nominations in the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Book Prize category that honours books that contribute to the enjoyment and understanding of BC. The nominations were for: British Columbia: A New Historical Atlas by Derek Hayes (D & M), Bruno and the Beach: The Beachcombers at 40 and Undesirables: White Canada and the Komagata Maru--An Illustrated History, by Ali Kazimi (D & M).
White was also pleased to receive a nomination for the Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize that goes to the best original non-fiction literary work written by a BC author for The Art of the Impossible: Dave Barrett and the NDP in Power, 1972 to 1975, by Geoff Meggs and Rod Mickleburgh.
“We always like to be nominated in this category as it’s an award for quality of writing,” White added.
The winners will be announced in Victoria at an awards gala at Government House on Saturday, May 4. White will be there.
“The entire book world turns out in force,” White said, and it’s a chance for him to get together with other publishers and booksellers. The annual awards carry a cash prize of $2,000 plus a certificate.