Devilfish by Jenny Higgins wins 2024 Ed Roberts Book Award

Devilfish by Jenny Higgins wins 2024 Ed Roberts Book Award

Devilfish, by Jenny Higgins and published by Boulder Books, wins 2024 Edward Roberts History Award from Historic Sites Association of NL.

Giant squid took centre stage today as Boulder Books’ and author Jenny Higgins were announced winner of the 2024 Edward Roberts Book Award for Devilfish: When Giant Squid Ruled the Northern Sea.

The Historic Sites Association of Newfoundland and Labrador recognizes an outstanding work of non-fiction that enriches the knowledge of the general public in the history and / or heritage of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Devilfish: When Giant Squid Ruled the Northern Sea is a richly illustrated history. Higgins reveals the history and lore of one of nature’s most mysterious creatures.

The world did not truly believe in giant squid until the 1870s, when record numbers of the mysterious creatures appeared in the waters and beaches around the island of Newfoundland.

Thrilling tales and images of “devilfish” spread around the globe and shaped the animal’s public image of an animal suspended at the boundary of fable and fact. The public imagination cloaked the mollusc in mystery; a real-life sea monster who had acquired the attributes of a sea serpent.

Devilfish contains more than 130 images and 10 pull-out facsimile documents. They are meant in equal parts to inform and delight—to explain the remarkable history of the giant squid while building a sense of wonderment and fun. Also included are dozens of bite-sized sidebars. Consider this a pop-up book for adults, grounded in research and reaching for the wondrous.

Author Information:

Jenny Higgins is a writer and researcher who has worked extensively for the Maritime History Archive and the Department of Education. Her previous books include Perished: the 1914 Newfoundland Sealing Disaster (Winner of the Democracy 250 Atlantic Book Award for Historical Writing); Newfoundland in the First World War (Nominated for the 2018 Historic Sites Association, Heritage and History Award; winner of the 2017 Newfoundland and Labrador Book Award, non-fiction); and Agnes Ayre’s ABCs of Amazing Women.