Our writers, poets, historians and illustrators have once again proven they are of the highest calibre making it no easy task for the judges to select 30 incredible and diverse books from more than 470 entries.
Many Australians have turned to books now more than ever to enrich their lives and escape the challenges of restrictions, lockdowns and border closures.
While many of us may not be able to physically travel far, Australia's storytellers and historians continue to take us on journeys to the past, present and future.
The Prime Minister's Literary Awards recognise and celebrate the cream of Australian writing and the 2021 shortlist offers us a selection of thoughtful, inspiring and entertaining books to help us through challenging times.
The nominated books follow quite different and engaging paths, often tackling current issues, especially environmental crisis and challenges of modern families and social lives. The styles range from mastery of traditional form towards 'magical realist' and experimental.
The Awards recognise and celebrate the exceptional literary talents of established and emerging Australian writers.
They highlight the important role the arts have in connecting us to Australian society and culture.
We congratulate each and every author, illustrator, poet and historian selected for this year's shortlists.