Avenue of Champions by Conor Kerr won the novel category of the 2022 Relit Awards! Congratulations, Conor! The Relit Award mandate is to reignite passion in literature. Their focus remains on writers just beginning their careers and independent presses. 

Avenue of Champions is about Daniel, a young Métis man, searching for a way to exist in a world of lateral violence, intergenerational trauma and systemic racism. Facing obstacles of his own at every turn, he observes and learns from the lived realities of his family members, friends, teachers and lovers. He finds hope in the inherent connection of Indigenous Peoples to the land, and the permanence of culture, language and ceremony in the face of displacement. 

Set in Edmonton, this story considers Indigenous youth in relation to the urban constructs and colonial spaces in which they survive—from violence, whitewashing, trauma and racism to language revitalization, relationships with Elders, re-staking land claims and ultimately, triumph. Based on Papaschase and Métis oral histories and lived experience, Conor Kerr’s debut novel will not soon be forgotten.

Conor is represented by Carolyn Forde and Cody Caetano. 

To see a full list of awardees, please visit: http://www.relitawards.com/