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2005 Vancity Book Prize

“Keep Sweet: Children of Polygamy” wins 2005 Vancity Book Prize

Vancouver, August 31, 2005 – An intimate memoir of girlhood and womanhood within the patriarchal system of a Mormon Fundamentalist community has taken the 2005 Vancity Book Prize.

Written by Debbie Palmer and co-authored by Dave Perrin (Dave Press and Sandhill Book Marketing), this compelling work takes the reader into the plural marriages and daily lives of children, sister-wives, husbands and leaders in communal Mormon Fundamentalist communities in North America. Debbie Palmer grew up in the Mormon Fundamentalist community of Bountiful near Creston, BC. Her father had six wives.

Dave Perrin is known for his popular books about his life as a Kootenay veterinarian.

Vancity Book Prize runners-up include “Winning Choice on Abortion: How British Columbian and Canadian Feminists won the Battles of the 1970s and 1980s” (Trafford) by Ann Thomson and “Mariah Mahoi of the Islands” (New Star) by Jean Barman.

The Vancity Book Prize was founded in 1992 and is one of the most lucrative literary awards in BC. It is designed to raise awareness of women’s issues while recognizing B.C. writers’ contributions to the literary community. Winners receive $3,000 from Vancity, and $1,000 from the BC Ministry of Community Services to be donated to the charity of the winner’s choice.

“Among many excellent books in this year’s submissions, the judges chose “Keep Sweet” because of its powerful subject matter,” says Reva Dexter, Vice-chair of Vancity’s Board of Directors. “The judges ranked this disturbing memoir, not only because of its literary merits, but also because we felt more citizens need to be aware of this phenomenon. This award recognizes a book that will ensure that the plight of children of polygamy will surface.”

For more information on these authors and their books, visit

The award will be presented on September 25 at “Word on the Street” at the Vancouver Public Library Main Branch.

Vancity is Canada’s largest credit union, with $10.5 billion in assets, more than 312,000 members, and 42 branches throughout Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and Victoria. Vancity was chosen as the best place to work in Canada for 2005 by Maclean’s Magazine as part of its annual Canada’s Top 100 Employers issue. Vancity owns Citizens Bank of Canada, serving members across the country by telephone, ATM, and the Internet. Both Vancity and Citizens Bank are guided by a commitment to corporate social responsibility, and to helping members and communities thrive and prosper.