Shadowing the Best of CanLit

Featuring the Shadow Giller

The History of the Shadow Giller

The Shadow Giller was created in 1995 by Kevin from Canada. We are honoured to continue this tradition of shadowing the Giller Prize each year. Please find Kevin’s full legacy on his literary blog Kevin From Canada.

Kevin had deep and abiding love of good fiction, in particular Canadian fiction. When the Giller prize was created in 1994, he was concerned that the Toronto-based jury might not give due consideration to writers from the rest of the county, so convened a Shadow Giller jury in 1995. That jury mirrored the work of the real jury, and read and reviewed all the long listed books, and published their selection for the prize the day prior to the real jury’s announcement. The Shadow Giller deliberated every year from 1995 to 2015 under Kevin’s chairmanship — and continues to this day, albeit without him at the helm.

In 2009, Kevin began his award-winning literary blog KevinfromCanada, a pursuit which gave him great joy, and a rich community, helping him create a new reality after he lost his mobility and was confined to his home for the last 10 years.

He was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in 2014 and died on March 31, 2016.

The Shadow Giller jury continues without Kevin’s guiding light. It is carried on to honour his legacy in not only championing great Canadian literature, but in inspiring others to be their better selves. (Sections taken from Kevin’s About on his blog.)

New for 2020 and with permission and the blessing of Sheila, Kevin’s wife, we look forward to continuing the tradition of championing Canadian literature on this new site dedicated to shadowing the best of CanLit. Sheila has expressed her enthusiasm for this project and has said it is, “one of which Kevin would enthusiastically approve“.

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