Canada Reads began today. If you are unfamiliar with previous versions, five books are chosen for the short list of the book which everybody in Canada should read (but I think my American and British friends should get involved as well). Each book is pitched by an advocate. Each day one book is dropped from the list (Survivor for the literary set) and the book left standing at the end of the week is declared "the book everybody in Canada should read".
Here's the list:
- Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden - advocated by Nelofer Pazira (the tale of aboriginal Canadians fighting in the First World War)
- Rooms for Rent in the Outer Planets by Al Purdy - advocated by Susan Musgrave (first poetry book to be listed)
- A Complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews - advocated by John K Samson (the tale of a rebellious teenager in a small religious community)
- Deafening by Frances Itani - advocated by Maureen McTeer (set during WWI, a girl loses her hearing as a young child)
- Cocksure by Mordecai Richler - advocated by Scott Thompson (satire of the entertainment industry in 60's London)
So far Scott Thompson (of Kids in the Hall fame - or infamy) has been the most outrageous and the sassiest (as would be expected). Love him as I do, I am firmly behind my hero, John K Samson, frontman of the Weakerthans, songwriter, poet, publisher, and avid curler. A Complicated Kindness was the best book I read last year and if it's good enough for JKS, it's good enough for me.
<---- the lovely and talented John K Samson
I'll keep you posted as the week progresses.