Winners of the 2011 Victoria Book Prizes Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Victoria (October 12, 2011) – A Greater Victoria author and illustrator were recognized for their literary achievements this evening at the 2011 Victoria Book Prize Awards Gala. Kristi Bridgeman, illustrator of Uirapurú (pronounced oor-a-pur-u), was named winner of the 4th annual Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize. The winner of the 8th annual City of Victoria Butler Book Prize was awarded to Jack Hodgins for his book, The Master of Happy Endings.

Samantha Holmes, owner and general manager of Bolen Books, presented Kristi Bridgeman with a $5,000 cheque for her illustration of the children’s book Uirapurú, written by P.K. Page and published by Oolichan Books.

Uirapurú is a magical story based on a Brazilian legend about a songbird reputed to sing the most beautiful song in the world. P.K. Page’s retelling of this tale is beautifully reiterated by Kristi Bridgeman’s illustrations.

Jurors for the Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize were Tracy Kendrick, librarian; Barbara Nickel, writer; and Pat Oldroyd, bookseller. Their comments on Uirapurú included, “Kristi Bridgeman’s extraordinary accomplishment in Uirapurú is to tell a story with illustrations so richly-layered and complex, so warm with colour, humour and detail so as to draw the reader into its haunting magic and back again, each rereading a discovery.”

Born and raised on the west coast, Bridgeman now resides and paints in Saanich, British Columbia where she lives with her husband and two children. Her work has been shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award for illustration. Bridgeman’s fine art pieces can be found at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria and Sooke Harbour House Gallery.

The two other finalists for the Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize were Sarah N. Harvey and Arthur John Stewart. Held at the Union Club of British Columbia, the gala featured readings by the finalists, offering guests the opportunity to meet the writers and have their books autographed. The event was emceed by Jo-Ann Roberts of CBC Radio.

Founded in 2004, the City of Victoria Butler Book Prize is a partnership between the City of Victoria and Brian Butler of Butler Brothers Supplies. The Bolen Books Children’s Book Prize was founded in 2008 and is funded by Bolen Books. This year’s sponsors include the Greater Victoria Public Library, the Magnolia Hotel and Spa, the Union Club of British Columbia, the Victoria Marriott Inner Harbour Hotel, CBC Radio and Island Blue Print.

The Victoria Book Prize Society establishes the policy and criteria for the prizes, appoints the juries and administers the competitions.


For more information, please contact:

Lorna MacDonald, President
Victoria Book Prize Society
1333 Fairfield Road
Victoria, BC V8S 1E4
Tel: 250-382-1058