I have just finished listening to the fifth show and Miriam Toews book "A Complicated Kindness" won but surprise! surprise! Al Purdy's book "Rooms for Rent in the Outer Planets" lasted until today. Wow! A book of poetry actually made it that far. It was the only book on the list that I have read so I can't really comment on the others although this week's commentary on the other 4 books has made me very interested in reading them as well.
The defender of Al Purdy's book was Susan Musgrave who I took a creative writing course from back in the 80's at the University of Waterloo. I think the years have worn her down a bit: she might have been a more passionate promoter of this book then but it was good hearing her voice again. I really enjoyed Scott Thompson's participation, he was hilarious, wonderfully honest and certainly made me want to read Mordecai Richler's Cocksure. And the cat fight between Nelofer Pazira and Maureen McTeer was both embarrassing and funny at the same time. John K. Samson proved himself a gentleman throughout the 5 days and perhaps that is why his book won… who knows.
I look forward to the show next year, the 6th year, when the winners of the first 5 years including Mr. Samson from The Weakerthans will be put head to head. He'll be joining 2 other musicians. That will be something! It's programs like this that help me know how much I love CBC radio.