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Press Release | Literature

Press Release: Carol Matas a 2014 National Jewish Book Awards Finalist

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Carol Matas is the only Canadian nominated in the Children's & Young Adult Literature category of the 2014 National Jewish Book Awards, the most prestigious literary awards in the Jewish book world.

Tucson Jo by Carol Matas, 2014 National Jewish Book Awards Press Release (01/18/2015) Gabriola Island, BC - Fictive Press, a small Canadian digital and print-on-demand publisher, has won literary recognition from the most prestigious organization in the Jewish book world: the National Jewish Book Awards. Tucson Jo by Carol Matas - only Fictive Press' sixth published title - has just been named a 2014 National Jewish Book Awards Finalist for Children's and Young Adult Literature. Matas is the only Canadian honoured in this category.

"This recognition is particularly sweet because traditional publishers had turned down Tucson Jo, and because it was the result of a close collaboration between Carol and me," said Fictive Press publisher Morri Mostow.

"Morri helped me see what this book was really all about," added Matas. "She was a much tougher editor than I expected from a best friend of almost 60 years, but our friendship weathered this collaboration unscathed."

Set in the American Wild West of 1882, Tucson Jo is a fast-paced historical novel for Middle Grades packed with action and deeds of derring-do, shootouts and holdups, while dealing with Jewish themes and such moral issues as right and wrong, law and order, and women's rights. Josephine - known as Jo - the feisty 14-year-old protagonist, challenges her father at every turn, especially when he decides to run for mayor of Tucson. (The novel is inspired by the life of Charles Strauss, the first Jewish mayor of Tucson, Arizona.)

Tucson Jo, Matas' 45th book, now joins the ranks of the hundreds of well-respected, classic Jewish books that have been National Jewish Book Awards finalists. Now in its 64th year, the National Jewish Book Awards is the longest-running program of its kind in North America. It is sponsored by the Jewish Book Council, based in New York City.

While this National Jewish Book Awards honour is the first major recognition for Fictive Press, Carol Matas has won numerous awards for her books for children and young adults. Just last year, Pieces of the Past: The Holocaust Diary of Rose Rabinowitz (Scholastic Canada) took the prestigious 2014 Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award in the youth category and a 2014 Sydney Taylor Honor Award for Older Readers (from the Association of Jewish Libraries). Matas' books are read all over the world in more than a dozen languages, and have been best-sellers in Japan, Germany and Spain.

Since 2012, Fictive Press has published seven titles: a whimsical collection of 55-word stories, two poetry collections, a religious-philosophical work in translation, a meditation on death (also by Matas), and an historical play about a Canadian aboriginal World War I hero. Palm Springs Paranormal, Matas' New Adult thriller series set in California, is scheduled for autumn 2015.

Fictive Press, a small digital and print-on-demand publisher, was launched in 2011 by Morri Mostow as a division of BizNet Communications, a corporate and marketing communications firm that she and her husband, Doug Long, have been running since the early 1980s, first in Quebec and, since 2005, on Gabriola Island, BC.

To request a digital review copy, or to interview Carol Matas or Morri Mostow, contact:

Morri Mostow, Editor/Publisher
Tel: (250) 247-7104
Twitter: @mhmostow
Fictive Press blog:


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