Today, I finally finished listening the last Canada Reads debate for this year. The 2007 winner is Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill which was defended by John K. Samson of the Weakerthans and the winner from 2006. I enjoyed the debates. I had only read one of the books: Natasha and Other Stories by David Bezmozgis which I enjoyed very much. Steven Page from the Barenaked Ladies did a great job defending but, as in many of the previous Canada Reads, literature that isn’t a ‘novel’ is often biased against in Canada Reads. I personally don’t think that the form of ‘short stories’ and ‘poetry’ should be allowed to be brought up as a criticism. C’mon the novel is only one format, people. There are others that just as valid and often more popular with readers.
The picks this year seemed pretty dark with the possible exception of Children of My Heart (Ces Enfants de ma vie) by Gabrielle Roy (defended by Denise Bombardier who I l always like to hear from). I’m not sure which book I am inspired to read after the debates; Jim Cuddy‘s choice (Stanley Park by Timothy Taylor) sounded very interesting as did Donna Morrissey‘s (The Song of Kahunsha by Anosh Irani). I wasn’t as interested in Lullabies for Little Criminals.
I’ve started listening in to Le combat des livres too (the french-Canada version of Canada Reads). I was very surprised by how good Sheila Copps is in french. Wow. I wish I was as bilingue as she!