This House of Grief Garners Top Literary Award

Monday 03 October 2016

Renowned Australian author Helen Garner has won Western Australia's top literary award, the prestigious $25,000 Premier's Prize, at the 2016 Western Australian Premier's Book Awards.

Announcing the winners at the State Library of Western Australia tonight, Premier Colin Barnett paid tribute to the strong field of entries which he said provided a snapshot of the breadth of Australian literary talent.

"These awards recognise the scope of works available to readers today, from traditional novels, non-fiction works and poetry collections in hard copy, to digital narratives available on tablets and smartphones," Mr Barnett said.

"I congratulate Helen Garner on winning both the non-fiction category and the Premier's Prize for This House of Grief, and thank everyone who entered, as well as the judging panel for their work in choosing such worthy winners.

"The Liberal National Government continues to support developing talent, with the Western Australian Emerging Writers Award presented for only the second time. This year it went to Brooke Davis, for her novel Lost and Found, a charming story of three quirky characters on a journey of discovery during a road trip across Australia."

The Premier also took the opportunity to pay tribute to the late historian Emeritus Professor Geoffrey Bolton AO.

"Professor Bolton's magnificent contribution to our understanding of Western Australian history has been well recognised in past Premier's Book Awards and it was heartening to see one of his final works, Paul Hasluck: A life, entered posthumously this year," he said.

Culture and the Arts Minister John Day said there was a big response from readers who voted for their favourite book from the fiction shortlist, in the People's Choice Award.

"This year the Western Australian public chose Miles Allinson's Fever of Animals, a fine example of spirited writing that reflects the lively state of Australian literature," Mr Day said.

Fact File:

  • 792 entries were received in the WA Premier's Book Awards' new biennial format
  • Category entries were:  Fiction 149, Non-fiction 170, WA History 42, Children's Books 186, Poetry 92, Scripts 42, Writing For Young Adults 72, Digital Narrative 20, WA Emerging Writers 19
  • The People's Choice Award is sponsored by The West Australian
  • For more information, visit

Premier's office - 6552 5000

Culture and the Arts Minister's office - 6552 6200


Last updated on: 19 December 2016