Canada Reads 2011: The Long List

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Canada Reads 2011: The Long List

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Out 27, 2010, 8:47 am

Have you voted yet? CBC is holding a contest where you can suggest a Canadian novel for the long list of potential Canada Reads 2011 contenders. Unfortunately, only one vote per person...which hard!

I suggested The Dominion of Wyley McFadden by Scott Gardiner because it could only be Canadian, and I don't think it's as well known as it should be.

Out 27, 2010, 10:29 am

Ohh fun. Here's the website:

If I find the spot to vote, my nominee is Kiss of the Fur Queen by Tomson Highway.

Out 27, 2010, 10:31 am

Nope, no luck finding where to vote. Can you post the link LynnB?

Out 27, 2010, 2:56 pm

I don't know how to do that.

The contest for the top 40 is closed, and the results will be posted tomorrow (Thursday, Oct. 28). That's when the second contest will start: voting on the short list -- choosing 10 of the 40. The panelists will choose the books they'll defend from that list of 10.

You can read about it if you click on the link in Message 2 from Nickelini, then click on the "Blog" item "We Want You Again".

Out 27, 2010, 8:36 pm

This will be fun! Thanks for the updates :)

Out 28, 2010, 11:25 am

Here's the long list. We have until Nov. 9 to vote.

A Complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews
Bottle Rocket Hearts by Zoe Whittall
Clara Callan by Richard B. Wright
Come, Thou Tortoise by Jessica Grant
Conceit by Mary Novik
Crow Lake by Mary Lawson
Drive-by Saviours by Chris Benjamin
Elle by Douglas Glover
Essex County by Jeff Lemire
Far to Go by Alison Pick
February by Lisa Moore
Galore by Michael Crummey
Heave by Christy Ann Conlin
Inside by Kenneth J. Harvey
Late Nights on Air by Elizabeth Hay
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O'Neill
Moody Food by Ray Robertson
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Pattern Recognition by William Gibson
Room by Emma Donoghue
Shelf Monkey by Corey Redekop
Skim by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
Sweetness in the Belly by Camilla Gibb
The Best Laid Plans by Terry Fallis
The Birth House by Ami McKay
The Bishop's Man by Linden MacIntyre
The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou
The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill
The Day the Falls Stood Still by Cathy Marie Buchanan
The Fallen by Stephen Finucan
The Girls Who Saw Everything by Sean Dixon
The Last Crossing by Guy Vanderhaeghe
The Stone Carvers by Jane Urquhart
The Way the Crow Flies by Ann-Marie MacDonald
The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood
Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden
Through Black Spruce by Joseph Boyden
Twenty-Six by Leo McKay Jr.
Unless by Carol Shields

I've read 18 of them, so voting for only one will be a challenge for sure!

Out 28, 2010, 12:26 pm

I am impressed that you have read 18 of them!

I have only read a handful, with 8 more here in mount TBR. I am hoping this will prompt me to read through a few more on mount TBR before voting :)

"you can cast your one and only vote any time before midnight on Sunday, November 7"

Guess I have my work cut out for me :P

Out 28, 2010, 12:30 pm

What books are you surprised not to see on there?

I would have thought The Cellist of Sarajevo might be likely to make the list.

Just a fun idea for discussion.

Out 28, 2010, 12:44 pm

I'm surprised there's nothing by Timothy Findlay.

Out 28, 2010, 12:45 pm

Very true! Was just thinking that myself.

Out 28, 2010, 1:04 pm

No David Adam Richards either, which surprised me.

Out 28, 2010, 1:26 pm

Apparently three of the books are missing from the voting poll (e.g. The Birth House) so if I were you I would wait a day or two to vote. Just an fyi.

Out 28, 2010, 1:42 pm

The books had to be written in the last 10 years, which may explain the absence of Findlay.

Out 28, 2010, 5:52 pm

I've only read a few of the books above - so it's hard to decide. For the moment I think The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill would take my vote. That's a powerful book and it's resonated with me since I read it nearly 8 - 9 months ago. Thanks for the heads up re this thread, Bcteagirl :)

Out 28, 2010, 5:59 pm

Name the books you think will be in the top 10 here and you could win a 40 book library from CBC:

Out 28, 2010, 6:03 pm

Didn't The Book of Negroes already win CanadaReads?

Out 28, 2010, 6:07 pm

Yes last year. I think this is for the 'book of the decade' though.

I wonder if this means they will have two different Canada Reads competitions this year?

Editado: Nov 1, 2010, 5:43 am

I think Under This Unbroken Sky by Shandi Mitchell should be there.

Good question, Bcteagirl. I would think there should be two Canada reads competitons -but what do I know?

Nov 1, 2010, 1:52 pm

I posted the question to them, but received no reply. I think it is great to have a best book of the decade, my concern is that the books of this particular year may not get the recognition they deserve.

Anyway, so far my vote will be with Clara. However I am trying to read through more of them before the vote. I am reading The Life of Pi and am just up to the point where the tiger entered the lifeboat :P

Nov 1, 2010, 2:05 pm

Reading an interesting article written by the author of Shelf Monkey discussing this years format. Thoughts?

Nov 1, 2010, 7:32 pm

I just read that shelf monkey blog. Wise and reasonable. He proposes an interesting line-up of ten books:

"Inside by Kenneth J. Harvey
Come Thou Tortoise by Jessica Grant
Skim by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
The Best Laid Plans by Terry Fallis
Pattern Recognition by William Gibson
Bottle Rocket Hearts by Zoe Whittall
Conceit by Mary Novik
Elle by Douglas Glover
The Fallen by Stephen Finucan
Moody Food by Ray Robertson
Now that would be an interesting selection. Some well-known, some esoteric, all winners, all deserving."

I wouldn't mind reading that list (or, for that matter, submitting it for a chance to win the 40-book library, which you can do after you vote here: I am ashamed to admit I've only read one of the books on the list, Conceit, which I rather liked. How about the rest of you?

Nov 1, 2010, 8:57 pm

I have entered with a list, but am not voting until the last minute, as I am trying to read through one or two more books first.

I have read Clara Callan (One of my favourites, it actually was the book that got me back into Canlit after a long absence), Late Nights on Air (Fine, but not my favourite) and The Way the Crow Flies (Very well written, just not a large fan of the subject matter of child abuse).

My goal is to read through The Life of Pi and perhaps The Birth House before voting.. these are the ones on the CanadaReads list that have been on mount TBR the longest. I am 1/3 of the way through The Life of Pi now. Given its popularity, I have no doubt it will be in the top 10 since it is a vote this year. Once the top 10 are announced it will be interesting to see how close my guess was :)

Nov 2, 2010, 4:55 pm

I' ve just read 5 of the books - The Birth House - really enjoyed it - but I'm not sure if it worthy of the book of the decade -though I thorougly enoyed it The Bishop's Man - really an interesting book, but a bit slow and depressing The Book of Negroes - I loved that book and that's the one that got me back into CanLit and I've also read Clara Callan which I truly enjoyed. I will look for more by that author.

I tried to get into The Sweetness of the Belly but though I think it could be a good book - I abandoned it for now. I also skimmed A Complicated Kindness but could not really get into it either. I started into Late Nights on Air and I still hope to read it - but so far I could not get into it.

Nov 2, 2010, 5:09 pm

Vancouverdeb - I'm surprised you didn't like A Complicated Kindness. That was a five star read for me. She nailed so many aspects of Mennonite culture perfectly--you know she got it right because my mom and her friends found the book so offensive. S

Nov 6, 2010, 12:27 pm

Voting ends soon, so vote now if you haven't yet!

Am headed to the used bookstore, so went to the list to find 3 that I might want to watch out for to buy later.. and came away with a list of 7... wups :P

Which of these books had you not heard of before but now really want to read?

I am finding Shelf Monkey and Essex Country by Jeff Lemire (Touchstone not working) to be two of the most likely new finds for me :)

Nov 8, 2010, 4:11 pm

Hoping the top 10 list will be posted later today. In the meantime, there is a fun blog post talking about the campaign:

Editado: Nov 8, 2010, 8:31 pm

Oh no! I've just added about 30 books to my list!...

Nov 8, 2010, 11:17 pm

I know the feeling :P

Editado: Nov 9, 2010, 12:29 pm

The list is up!

The Best Laid Plans by Terry Fallis
The Birth House by Ami McKay
The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou
The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill
Bottle Rocket Hearts by Zoe Whittall
Essex County by Jeff Lemire
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Pattern Recognition by William Gibson
Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden
Unless by Carol Shields

Some I was expecting, and some I am a little surprised at. I could see it if it was a best book of the year.. for best book of the decade some of these books I have not really heard of. But that could be just me.

How many of these have you read? I was also surprised that I had only actually read one of these. The Life of Pi which I read when it came up on the long list. I have copies of The Birth House, Three Day Road and The Book of Negroes on mount TBR.. time permitting I will read through one or more of them while CanadaReads is choosing the top 5 Canadian books of the decade, to be announced on November 24th.

Any guesses as to what will be in the top 5? Do you think they will be less likely to choose a book because it has been on the list before? I can see both sides of that.. it is a different competition so it does seem unfair to 'handicap' them on the basis of winning a separate competition. On the other hand they have already been receiving comments about the overlap. What do you think?

Nov 9, 2010, 4:33 pm

Thanks for the list! I've read The Birth House which I loved -and I'm waiting patiently for her next book - The Cure for Virgins. I've also read The Book of Negoes which I think is a fantastic book. Not having yet read any of the others - thought I've got Three Day Road from the library -it's hard to guess.

I do think The Book of Negroes should be among the top five though.

I agree, BCteagirl, it's hard to know whether a book that's already been chosen for another award will be handicapped or not. I hope not.

Nov 9, 2010, 4:52 pm

The only one I've read is Unless, which I really liked. I own another four from the list but don't know when I'll get around to them.

Editado: Nov 9, 2010, 5:12 pm

I've read 1/2 of them: The Birth House, The Book of Negroes, Life of Pi, Three Day Road and Unless. Of those, my favourite was Unless.

The Best Laid Plans is on my wish list. I can't say I'm anxious to read any of athe other four.

Nov 17, 2010, 8:37 am

You can guess which 5 books will be chosen by the as yet unnamed panelists and win prizes. You could win a trip to Toronto to see the final debate on February 9 live, or copies of teh top ten books. I entered a few days ago, and already forget what I guessed! So, I'll be surprised twice if I win.

Editado: Nov 17, 2010, 12:07 pm

Nov 17, 2010, 12:23 pm

I enjoyed The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou. Because she's a local writer, it got a lot of support from the area of BC where I live. The Best Laid Plans was very good too but I thought it could have been tightened up with some editing.

Editado: Nov 20, 2010, 10:25 pm

Mensagem removida pelo autor.

Editado: Nov 20, 2010, 10:27 pm

Here I was thinking I just found the top 10 contenders for Canada reads -and BCTeagirl has already done so!!Pardon my lack of memory, and my failure to read above me just now! ;)

Nov 25, 2010, 5:51 am

Well, the short list for CBC Reads /Canada Reads has been posted.

The five books are as follows

The Best Laid Plans by Terry Fallis

Birth House by Ami McKay

The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou

Essex County by Jeff Lemire

Unless by Carol Shields

Editado: Nov 25, 2010, 7:50 am

Personally, I'm a bit surprised by the list. I might have thought Room by Emma Donoghue might have made it, or maybe Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden, or perhaps the The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill.

Well, of the 5 picks, I've only read Birth House by Ami Mckay - which I loved. But somehow, it did not strike me as a top pick book. It was a great read - almost too popular. But, perhaps that is why was chosen among the crowd? It's a great read.


Editado: Nov 25, 2010, 7:08 am

I've read The Birth House and Unless. I don't remember too much about the former; loved Unless.

While I don't remember which five I guessed, I'm pretty sure this wasn't the combination, so no prizes for me.

Nov 25, 2010, 2:10 pm

I think one of the issues might be that Room is so very new right now? To make it the best book of the decade might be touchy. Not my opinion, but just a thought as to why it might not be there.

Interesting that they are not debating until February, and a bit of a relief. I want to read The Birth House before then, but do not seem to be in the mood for it at all right now :P Will try again in January. Plenty of other books I should be reading before the year is out.

Nov 25, 2010, 2:16 pm

Canada Reads always works like that--they announce the list in last fall and then discuss in late winter. Gives people a chance to read the books. (at least that's how it's worked since I started paying attention). I agree that Room was too new.

Nov 26, 2010, 6:53 am

I've been reading along for several years. Last year, I decided to read the five books in a row, without other books in between, because I think that's what the panelists will do.