On 12 October 2015 the Australian Minister for the Arts Joy Burch announced the shortlisted nominations to the 2015 ACT Book of the Year Award. Musa's 2014 book which was chosen from a selection of 24 entries had previously been listed for the Miles Franklin Literary Award.
For full list of the books in the shortlist, click HERE.
About the book: (from Penguin Books Australia)
In small town suburbia, three young men are ready to make their mark.
Solomon is all charisma, authority and charm, down for the moment but surely not out. His half-brother, Jimmy, bounces along in his wake, underestimated, waiting for his chance to announce himself. Aleks, their childhood friend, loves his mates, his family and his homeland, and would do anything for them. The question is, does he know where to draw the line?
Solomon, Jimmy and Aleks: way out on the fringe of Australia, looking for a way in. Hip hop and graffiti give them a voice. Booze, women and violence pass the time while they wait for their chance. Under the oppressive summer sun, their town has turned tinder-dry. All it'll take is a spark.
As the surrounding hills roar with flames, the change storms in. But it's not what they were waiting for. It never is.
About Omar Musa:
Musa is a Malaysian-Australian rapper and poet from Queanbeyan. A former winner of the Australian Poetry Slam and Indian Ocean Poetry Slam. Omar has released three hip hop albums and two poetry books, including Parang, 2013. He was a panellist on ABC's Q&A in 2012, performing a poem for its conclusion, and was a star performer at the TEDx Sydney event in 2013 at the Sydney Opera House. Omar has also run creative workshops in remote Aboriginal communities, youth centres and rural schools. and he was named one of the Sydney Morning Herald's Young Novelists of the Year in 2015.