The Governor General's Literary Awards were first awarded in 1936 and have since grown to become one of Canada's most prestigious literary prizes. Awards are presented in both French and English in seven categories: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Drama, Children's Literature (Text), Children's Literature (Illustration), and Translation.
Books must be first edition trade books that have been written, translated or illustrated by Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada. In the Translation category, the original work, written in French, must also be a Canadian-authored title. Peer assessment committees review all eligible titles in each of the seven categories. Composed of writers, critics and/or independent book professionals, the peer assessment committees examine the eligible books according to literary and artistic merit.
Beginning in 1951, the prize was $250 and has grown steadily over subsequent years. Currently, the award consists of $25,000 in prize money and a special edition of each winner's book, bound by Montreal bookbinder, Lise Dubois.
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