Winners of the Indie Book Awards 2020

The winners of the Indie Book Awards 2020 have been announced.

Each year, independent booksellers from around Australia get together and vote for their favourite titles in six different categories, as well as their favourite book overall. Here are the winners for each category.


The Fiction winner and and the overall Indie Book of the Year winner is…
There Was Still Love by Favel Parrett

Ludek and Liska are twin sisters, separated at fifteen by the Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1938 and then kept apart by the Cold War. In the 1980s, each sister raises a grandchild; Liska in Melbourne and Ludek in Prague. Based on the experiences of Parrett’s own grandparents, There Was Still Love spans timelines and locations, focussing on the strong women who bind families together and touching on themes of separation, exile and identity.


The Non-Fiction winner is…
Tell Me Why by Archie Roach

No one has lived as many lives as Archie Roach - stolen child, seeker, lover, leader, and musical and lyrical genius - but, as a member of the Stolen Generations, it took him almost a lifetime to find out who he really was. In this intimate, moving and often shocking memoir, Roach’s story is an extraordinary odyssey through love and heartbreak, family and community, survival and renewal - and music. Running throughout is Roach’s resilience and strength - and the great love he shared with his life partner.


The Debut Fiction winner is…
Allegra in Three Parts by Suzanne Daniel

Eleven-year-old Allegra shuttles between her grandmothers who live next door to one another but couldn’t be more different. Matilde works all hours and instils discipline, duty and restraint. Meanwhile free-spirited Joy is full of colour, possibility and emotion, encouraging Ally to explore broad horizons and live her ‘true essence’. Allegra is left to orbit these three worlds wishing they loved her a little less and liked each other a lot more. Until one day the unspoken tragedy that’s created this division explodes within the person they all cherish most.


The Illustrated Non-Fiction winner is…
The Lost Boys by Paul Byrnes

This extraordinary book captures the previously untold stories of forty underage Anzac boys who fought in the First World War, from Gallipoli to the Armistice. Featuring haunting images taken at training camps and behind the lines, these tales are both heartbreaking and rousing, full of daring, ingenuity, recklessness, random horror and capricious luck. The Lost Boys is military history made deeply personal, a powerful homage to youthful bravery and a poignant reminder of the sacrifice of war.


The Children’s winner is…
The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Ugly Animals by Sami Bayly

Marvel as you enter the fascinating hidden world of ugly animals in this illustrated encyclopaedia of the animal kingdom’s most unusual and beauty-challenged species. With more than sixty ugly animals to explore, from the naked mole rat to the goblin shark, aye-aye, sphinx cat and blobfish, this compendium of the unusual celebrates the beauty in ‘ugliness’. Children and adults alike will pore over the breathtaking scientific illustrations of unusual animals, debating their relative ugliness and merits, learning about science and nature along the way.


The Young Adult winner is…
The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling by Wai Chim

Anna Chiu has her hands pretty full looking after her brother and sister and helping out at her dad’s restaurant, all while her mum stays in bed. Dad’s new delivery boy, Rory, is a welcome distraction and even though she knows that things aren’t right at home, she’s starting to feel like she could just be a normal teen. But when Mum finally gets out of bed, things go from bad to worse. And as Mum’s condition worsens, Anna and her family question everything they understand about themselves and each other.

You can read more about Indie Book Awards here.

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There Was Still Love

There Was Still Love

Favel Parrett

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