Canada Reads 2014

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Canada Reads 2014

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Nov 27, 2013, 10:33 am

Nov 27, 2013, 9:24 pm

I'm excited that Samantha Bee is one of the panelists.

Well, that piece of news caught my attention! ;-)

Nov 28, 2013, 8:32 am

We have some excellent panelists, for sure. I've already read Annabel and The Orenda, so only three to go. I was definitely NOT going to read The Year of the Flood, but guess this is part of the "Canada Reads Effect"!

Nov 29, 2013, 4:05 pm

re: #3 - lynn:

hi lynn! i am glad to see there is a group here on LT for canada reads! i think the 2014 debates are going to be very interesting! i was able to attend the launch event in toronto, and meet the panelists & authors ahead of time. it was really great.

i had to laugh at your YotF comment. i was hoping it wouldn't be chosen, haha!! but i will read it, now that it's in for 2014.

Nov 29, 2013, 4:45 pm

Year of the Flood is a fabulous book! I loved it. I've also read Annabel, and I own the Orenda. I might pick up a copy of Cockroach, but I'm not likely to hunt down Half Blood Blues.

Dez 22, 2013, 3:06 pm

I"ve already read three of the nominees: Year of the Flood (liked it), Half-Blood Blues (really liked) and Annabel (enjoyable, with a few weird aspects, but over all v good).
Of the other two, I've read books by those authors and liked them. What a great collections of books and authors! I'm number 2 at the library for Cockroach, and it's a book I've been meaning to read since I loved DeNiro's Game.

Sam Bee, Donovan Bailey, and Stephen Lewis? That is an impressive varied collection of awesomeness.

Jan 19, 2014, 1:16 am

I've already read Year of the Flood (liked it) and Half-Blood Blues (it was ok, but I wasn't crazy about it), and I have Annabel on my tbr already. I will listen to the debates and decide then whether or not I want to add the other two to my tbr.

Jan 19, 2014, 9:13 am

I've read Annabel, which was ok, but I couldn't help but compare it to Middlesex which was much better. I've also read The Orenda, which was fantastic!

I'll be reading the other three. I would not have read Year of the Flood if Canada Reads had not chosen it.

Jan 19, 2014, 2:58 pm

8. I'm planning to read both Annabel and Middlesex. This makes me think I should read Annabel first, so I can enjoy them both rather than comparing thing and finding Annabel a disappointment in comparison!

Fev 18, 2014, 9:30 pm

I've read Year of the Flood (loved it) and am working my way through Annabel and liking it so far. I bought Orenda and am looking forward to it. HBB and Cockroach are both a bit out of my preferred style of writing, but I intend to check them out if I have time. I love that this competition brings works to my attention that I wouldn't have read otherwise. Definitely looking forward to the discussions!

Fev 19, 2014, 8:27 am

Me, too! I plan to start Cockroach, Year of the Flood and Half Blood Blues next week. I've already read the other two.

Fev 19, 2014, 5:33 pm

CBC has a contest where you can make your predictions about which books will be eliminated when! Might be worth a shot if you're the armchair prognosticator type ;)

Fev 20, 2014, 12:32 pm

Thanx for the link. I voted...but am just guessing as I've yet to read 3 of the books!

Fev 23, 2014, 1:03 pm

I loved Half Blood Blues, which I wouldn't have read if not the Canada Reads. Wonderful characters, great story and the writing really evokes the atmosphere of jazz as WW2 breaks out.

But, I don't see how this is a "book that could change Canada", which is the theme for the debates???

Fev 23, 2014, 8:59 pm

After hearing so many "meh" comments about Half Blood Blues when it was up for all those awards, I wrote it off. But now I'm hearing so many good things about it! I don't need more books in my wish list, but I might have to change my mind here.

Read the first page of both The Orenda and Cockroach today, and wanted to read both . . . but I picked The Orenda. I bought the first edition hardback (sale table at Costco), so it looks dauntingly long, but now that I've started I think it will actually go fast--lots of short chapters, which I find easier to read than big long chapters. On one hand, that makes no sense. But it's true.

Fev 26, 2014, 7:48 am

Finished Year of the Flood and liked it a lot more than I thought I would! It will be, I believe, a strong contender.

Started Cockroach last night, but didn't get far.

Mar 1, 2014, 5:06 pm

Here is my list:

Annabel - Meh, I found it uneven, but it certainly generated a lot of discussion in my book club a couple of years ago.
Year of the Flood- I enjoyed parts of this a lot, especially listening to the original hymns on the audiobook version, but Atwood already is a legend, so I would prefer another author to benefit from winning
Half-Blood Blues- While I really liked the writing, I agree that it might not top the list of books to change Canada.
Cockroach-Not a book I would normally pick up, and I struggled to finish it because I didn't like the characters, but I think the subject of integration of immigrants into our society is timely, especially in Quebec
The Orenda Amazing! I've never read a book quite like it- so many layers of love, violence, misunderstandings, myth and history. Unfortunately, I predict that the panlists will knock this one out early because of the perceived threat, but I am so thankful that Canada Reads introduced me to Boyden's writing.

Mar 3, 2014, 5:11 pm

HannahJo - interesting comments, especially about the Atwood and Boyden books. Having listened to the first round of debates and actually thinking about the books in relation to the theme of "the book that will change Canada," I actually think that Year of the Flood would be my top choice. Of course, now we know that a few of the panelists couldn't relate to it and--whoosh--it's gone. But like HannahJo says, Atwood doesn't exactly need the publicity anyway, so I'm okay with it.

Anyone else have thoughts about today's program?

Mar 3, 2014, 6:24 pm

I just listened to the program. I'm not sure what to think. I had a better answer, but I can't remember how to do spoilers and I have to go out. I'm okay with the decision today. What a great panel this year!

Mar 3, 2014, 6:29 pm

#19 - you do spoilers the same way you do bold, italics, or strikeout, but you use the word "spoiler" instead. For your future reference.

Mar 3, 2014, 9:30 pm

Back from watching a basketball game.
I thought the show today was very good. Sometimes I feel like it's all fluff, and no content, just talking around the books, but today felt substantial. I don't even know which book I'm cheering for. I've read all but The Orenda, and after Web Kenow's opening verse, I can't believe I didn't read it. I'm definitely going to look for it. I love how invested Sam Bee was in her book Cockroach, and she was right when she was so upset and crying. I didn't like Web dismissing the immigrant experience - clearly some immigrants feel like the character in Rawi Hage's book, and to dismiss that is just as disrepectful as dismissing the native experience.

I did it! Thanks, Joyce

About the book that was voted off: I think it was half not feeling connected to the characters, and half scared of Stephen Lewis' speaking ability. I liked The Year of the Flood more than I thought I would, and as a book that will change Canada, it has potential. But as a great story? Not so much.

I like how the panelists all seemed to actually like each other's books for varied reason.
I can't wait to listen to tomorrow's broadcast (on podcast later in the day)

Mar 4, 2014, 8:11 am

I was a bit surprised at what was voted off, but not personally disappointed.

I think the debate was great!

Mar 4, 2014, 2:14 pm

Comments on day 2, Tuesday March 4

******warning: I'm not hiding spoilers***********

So what do you think after today's show? I agree with the book that they voted off in that it doesn't appear to fit the theme, and I don't think its panelist was able to show how it did. I haven't read it, so I'm just going by what I hear in the debate.

The only other comments I have are about The Orenda--I have a couple of issues with the book and its place in the debate. When the book was published I was very eager to read it and bought it right away, which is something I almost never do. Life got in the way and I didn't get to read it until now -- I have 78 pages left that I hope to knock back today. I have to say I'm disappointed with the book. In some places I found the writing to be poor, but overall I find it sort of boring. And when Bird wrestles down the buck, it occurs to me that he is a superhero cartoon character. Further, I'm finding Wab Kinew is too much in my face and overly aggressive, maybe even a bit of a bully. He's not winning me over to his side. That said, I did agree with his comments about the veracity of Annabel (even though he was rather aggressive in his technique!). I liked Annabel when I read it--I think I even gave it 5 stars--but it's a flawed book for sure, and I'm not sure it inspires change. So at this point I think I have to cheer for Cockroach, even though I haven't read it. But Samantha Bee's tears yesterday touched me (does that make me a sap?).

Just my thoughts--I'm sure you will all disagree!

Mar 4, 2014, 3:22 pm

I am enjoying the debates very much. I'm surprised Year of the Flood was dispatched so quickly! And while I loved Half Blood Blues, I can't see it as a book to change Canada. I agree with the comments that Annabel is unrealistic, but at this point, any of the three books would be a good choice, I think.

Mar 5, 2014, 10:57 am

Just dropping by to say I finished the Orenda. I liked the first 30 pages or so, and the last chapter and really, really, really disliked everything in between! The unrelenting violence was just over the top for me.

Mar 5, 2014, 1:23 pm

Just like the Stephen Lewis said yesterday!

I haven't listened to today's yet. Yesterday the podcast wasn't available til supper time.

Mar 6, 2014, 12:11 pm

The Orenda just won Canada reads over Cockroach- the debates were excellent.

Mar 6, 2014, 12:57 pm

The debates were indeed excellent. I was especially impressed by Samantha Bee despite her blubbering. She is one intelligent and compassionate person.

Mar 8, 2014, 7:36 am

I saw the last day on TV -- what a great show. I'm so glad The Orenda won and that Cockroach did so well.

Mar 16, 2014, 1:27 am

It always airs when I'm at work, so normally I come home and listen to the podcast in the evenings. Last week when it was on, my computer decided it was just going to give up on life! Sigh... didn't get my new computer set up till last Sunday, so I avoided this thread and listened to the podcasts earlier this week (though I was doing other things at the same time, so I didn't pay complete attention, and I'm sure I missed lots of things!).

I'm still unsure whether or not I will add Cockroach and The Orenda to my tbr. I'm guessing I'll likely add both, but I haven't actually done so quite yet.

Going with the theme, I agree that Half Blood Blues doesn't really fit. I was surprised Cockroach managed to stay in the running as long as it did! I guess, with it staying under the radar as long as it did, that may have helped?

As always, it was an enjoyable debate!