amelia westlake wins ethel turner prize at nsw premier’s literary awards

Amelia Westlake has won the Ethel Turner Prize for Young People’s Literature at the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards.

Judges’ comments

Erin Gough has […] created a fiercely funny narrative that sits well in the contemporary young adult niche, raising issues of feminist intersectionality, queerness and racism, shedding timely commentary on the #MeToo movement. While the novel explores gender politics and the mechanics of power, at its heart it works well as an uplifting romance novel that is delightful to read.

One of the many strengths of this novel is the dialogue which is taut, sassy and authentic. Gough creates three-dimensional characters who are flawed, yet full of heart. Amelia Westlake goes further, encouraging dialogue and camaraderie, reiterating the importance of creating inclusive, affirming environments. While the setting is an elite Australian private school, this should serve a global readership well exploring universal issues with flair, humour and intelligence.

Ultimately, much-applauded author Erin Gough has once again created a fresh, intelligent and edgy narrative that resonates well with her readers. Erin Gough continues to be an important voice in Australian YA fiction. This is a smart and very readable rom-com… and so much more!

 See the full story at the State Library of NSW website

NSW Premier’s Literary Awards 2019 held in the Mitchell Reading Room, honoring Australian writers