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Australian independent booksellers are thrilled to announce their Shortlist for the Indie Book Awards 2022, their favourite Australian books published in 2021!

Established in 2008, the Indie Book Awards recognize and celebrate this country’s incredible literary talent and who better to nominate and judge the best-of-the-best than indie booksellers – the ultimate champions of great Australian writing!

Who will win each category in 2022?

Who will take out the overall ‘2022 Book of the Year’ Award?!

The Category Winners and the Overall Book of the Year Winner will be announced at a virtual awards event on Monday 21 March 2022.

The Shortlist for the Indie Book Awards 2022 is:

Treasure and Dirt by Chris Hammer (Allen & Unwin)

Devotion by Hannah Kent (Picador Australia)

Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy (Hamish Hamilton Australia)

The Last Woman in the World by Inga Simpson (Hachette Australia)


Love Stories by Trent Dalton (Fourth Estate Australia)

Who Gets to Be Smart by Bri Lee (Allen & Unwin)

Toxic: The Rotting Underbelly of the Tasmanian Salmon Industry by Richard Flanagan (Penguin Australia)

Larrimah by Caroline Graham and Kylie Stevenson (Allen & Unwin)


When Things Are Alive They Hum by Hannah Bent (Ultimo Press)

We Were Not Men by Campbell Mattinson (HarperCollins Australia)

Love & Virtue by Diana Reid (Ultimo Press)

The Silent Listener by Lyn Yeowart (Viking Australia)

Where the River Bends by Jane and Jimmy Barnes (HarperCollins Australia)

Still Life by Amber Creswell Bell (Thames & Hudson Australia)

Garden Like a Nonno by Jaclyn Crupi (Affirm Press)

Costa's World by Costa Georgiadis (ABC Books, HarperCollins Australia)


Dragon Skin by Karen Foxlee (Allen & Unwin Children's)

Somebody's Land: Welcome to Our Country by Adam Goodes & Ellie Laing, illustrated by David Hardy (Allen & Unwin Children's)

Rabbit, Soldier, Angel, Thief by Katrina Nannestad (ABC Books, HarperCollins Australia)

Wandi by Favel Parrett (Lothian Children's Books)

The Monster of Her Age by Danielle Binks (Lothian Children's Books)

The Boy from the Mish by Gary Lonesborough (Allen & Unwin Children's)

The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni (Penguin Australia)

If Not Us by Mark Smith (Text Publishing)

The twenty-four shortlisted books, the best titles of the year as nominated by Australian independent booksellers themselves, will be vying for the top spot as the Overall Indie ‘Book of the Year’ for 2022. Panels of expert judges (all indie booksellers and avid readers) will choose the winners in the six book categories – Fiction, Debut Fiction, Non-Fiction, Illustrated Non-Fiction, Children’s books (up to 12yo) and Young Adult (12+). Independent booksellers from around the country will then vote to select their favourite book of the year from the six category winners.

Since the Awards inception in 2008, the Indies have a well-deserved reputation for picking the best of the best in Australian writing. Past Book of the Year winners have gone on to be bestsellers and win other major literary awards. Previous winners include: The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams, There Was Still Love by Favel Parrett, Boy Swallows Universe by Trent Dalton; Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend; The Dry by Jane Harper; The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood; The Bush by Don Watson; The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan; The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman; All That I Am by Anna Funder; The Happiest Refugee by Anh Do; Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey; and Breath by Tim Winton.

The Awards recognise and celebrate indie booksellers as the number one supporters of Australian authors. What makes our Indies uniquely placed to judge and recommend the best Aussie books of the past year to their customers and readers, is their incredible passion and knowledge, their contribution to the cultural diversity of the Australian reading public by recommending books beyond the big brands, and their love of quality writing.

The Indie Book Awards would like to gratefully acknowledge the 2022 Awards Sponsors: Shawline Publishing Group, Pan Macmillan Australia, Affirm Press, Penguin Random House Australia, Thames & Hudson Australia, Simon & Schuster Australia, Text Publishing and Award partner: Hachette Australia. The Indie Book Awards are proudly coordinated by Leading Edge Retail.


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