The top five Canada Reads 2012 books were revealed yesterday, as well as the five Canadians who will advocate on their behalf.
Despite my frustrations with how things went down last year and my initial resistance to an all non-fiction Canada Reads, I'm excited.
The books look interesting and their defenders seem passionate. And almost as diverse as Canadians can be.
I really enjoyed reading last year's book choices. It was the actual debates that set my teeth on edge. If I had been one of the authors of last year's books, I would have been very disappointed in the quality of discussion (except for Sara Quin defending Essex County - she was wonderful). The conversations were generally at the level of a school yard taunts ("Oh yeah! Well I'm going to vote against your book because you didn't like mine!" "I didn't even finish reading your book but I'm going to tear it down anyway!"). There was so little discussion about the actual content of any of the books. How is it that the Canada Reads debates made me less interested in novels I had already read and enjoyed?
But that was last year.
The best part of Canada Reads in any year is reading the books. It's also the biggest commitment. And I've decided to do it.
Will you join me?
The books chosen for 2012 are:
The Game by Ken Dryden (defended by Allan Thicke)
On a Cold Road by Dave Bidini (defended by Stacey McKenzie)
Prisoner of Tehran by Marina Nemat (defended by Arlene Dickenson)
Something Fierce by Carmen Aguirre (defended by Shad)
The Tiger by John Vaillant (defended by Anne-France Goldwater)