• Home
  • SWCC Book Awards Winners

SWCC Book Awards Winners

09 May 2017 9:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

The Science Writers and Communicators of Canada is pleased to announce the winners of this year's awards for books published in 2016.

In the youth category the winner is:

Faster Higher Smarter by Simon Shapiro

It takes a lot of talent, skill, and hard work to become a world-class athlete. But it takes even more to make a sport better: it takes smarts! And whether innovators are aware of it or not, it takes an understanding of physics, mechanics, and aerodynamics to come up with better techniques and equipment. From swimming, soccer, and basketball to skateboarding and wheelchair sports, Faster Higher Smarter looks at the hard science behind many inventions and improvements in sports. 

In the general audience category the winner is:

The Killer Whale Who Changed The World by Mark Leiren-Young

Killer whales had always been seen as bloodthirsty sea monsters. That all changed when a young killer whale was captured off the west coast of North America and displayed to the public in 1964. Moby Doll — as the whale became known — was an instant celebrity, drawing 20,000 visitors on the one and only day he was exhibited. He died within a few months, but his famous gentleness sparked a worldwide crusade that transformed how people understood and appreciated orcas. Because of Moby Doll, we stopped fearing “killers” and grew to love and respect “orcas.”

'The Killer Whale Who Changed the World'  is a riveting and uniquely Canadian science story  about how the first observations of a captive orca transformed the understanding of this species and inspired an international conservation effort.  It unfolds through lively narrative filled with suspense, clarity and humour to reveal the pivotal role played by a group of Canadian scientists, businessmen and the founding director of the Vancouver Aquarium.  The author, science journalist Mark Leiren-Young, chased the story for almost 20 years.  We unanimously wish to honour his effort and persistence in chasing and investigating this story, as well as underlying the originality and ongoing relevance of the story.  'The Killer Whale Who Changed the World’ is a must read by all who care about nature, species conservation, and animal welfare, and an eloquent example of excellent science journalism.

Science Writers and Communicators of Canada offer two annual book awards to honour outstanding contributions to science writing 1) intended for and available to children/middle grades ages 8-12 years, and 2) intended for and available to the general public. Books are judged on literary excellence and scientific content and accuracy. In addition the two book juries look for initiative, originality, clarity of interpretation, relevance and value in promoting greater understanding of science by the general reader. The independent juries are composed of writers, scientists and members of the intended audience. Winners receive a certificate and cash prize of $1,000. The prizes will be presented at the SWCC annual conference in Ottawa, Sept 13-16.