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January 2011

Homerun celebrates Jeff Lemire and the graphic novel

Can graphic novels be considered another form of literature? Or are they a unique genre that shouldn't be lumped in with the traditional novel? And what does the buzzworthy term "graphic novel" mean anyway? How is it changing the......

Meet actor Lorne Cardinal

Last week, we visited Essex County by Jeff Lemire. This week, we move from the country to the suburbs as we explore Carol Shields's Unless, which will be defended by actor Lorne Cardinal. One of Canada's most recognizable actors, with numerous......

The Canada Reads advice contest

Last week, we asked you which Canadian author you would most like to meet. The answers you sent in were as varied and diverse as the authors themselves! This week's winner is Bev Church. Bev chose a Canada Reads author, Terry......

The Canada Reads team offers advice

The Canada Reads team has stepped up to the plate to defend their chosen title every week. They're now experts on the subtleties of strategy, how to dodge punches (both metaphorical and physical) and what it takes to give it......

Listen to Fresh Air's Canada Reads panel

On Sunday, January 23, Mary Ito of Fresh Air talked to two of the biggest Canada Reads fans around. Mark Lefebvre is the manager of Titles Bookstore at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. Mark is not only a Canada Reads......

Listen to Island Morning's Battle of the Book Clubs

  Every year, Island Morning, the CBC Radio morning show on Prince Edward Island, hosts the Battle of the Book Clubs. Five book clubs across the province choose a Canada Reads contender to defend, and then share their thoughts with the......

Podcast: Sara Quin defends Essex County

There are only two weeks left until the Canada Reads contenders duke it our for the coveted title. Until then, we've got you covered, offering you a first look at this year's panelists, and how they plan to take down......

The Beguiling bookstore gives us the inside scoop on Essex County

Editor's note: The Beguiling, a comic book store in Toronto, is a long-time supporter of Jeff Lemire's career. We touched base with the shop's owner, Peter Birkemoe, and manager Chris Butcher, to find out their thoughts on Essex County cracking......

Brian Francis visits Essex County

There's a golden rule when it comes to writing; one that most writers need to be reminded of time and time again, regardless of what stage they're at in their careers. Show, don't tell. In a nutshell, the "show, don't......

Jeff Lemire gives us a tour of Essex County

It's been a while since I left Essex County. By that I mean both the fictional version of the place as well as the real Essex County where I grew up. Yet I keep getting pulled back. I finished writing......

Meet indie artist Sara Quin

Last week, we dove into The Bone Cage by Angie Abdou. This week, we turn our attention to Essex County by Jeff Lemire. We'll talk to his title's defender, Sara Quin, and hold a live chat with the author. It should......

The Canada Reads weekly contest: Who's your favourite Canadian author?

One of the favourite topics of conversation in the Canada Reads offices is our favourite bookish places: great places to read, our cherished library nooks, an undiscovered bookstore or friendly bookseller. Literary landmarks are all over this great country, so......

The Canada Reads team sizes up the competition

This week we asked the Canada Reads defenders to take the measure of their competition: who would be their chosen book's toughest opponent in the debates? All were equally respectful of their rivals, but they certainly had different notions of......

Podcast: Georges Laraque makes a splash with The Bone Cage

The countdown to Canada Reads is on. We're less than a month away to the battle of the books. We visited Nova Scotia with Debbie Travis. She's championing The Birth House by Ami McKay. We climbed to the top of......

Editor Suzette Mayr and designer Ruth Linka on The Bone Cage

Editor's note: We wanted to dive a little deeper into how Angie Abodu's The Bone Cage came together, and its editor, Suzette Mayr, and its designer, Ruth Linka, were kind enough to talk about how they helped shape Angie's manuscript......

Brian Francis gets into The Bone Cage

I think Angie Abdou deserves a gold medal for The Bone Cage because she managed to achieve something I never thought possible. She made me feel like a jock. I've never been much of an athlete. The closest I ever......

Angie Abdou on embracing her 'inner dumb jock'

I hear people talk about embracing their inner book geek, but there's nothing inner about my book geek. I've long made a full-time living out of loving books and encouraging others to do the same. What I've had to work......

Meet former NHL tough guy Georges Laraque

Last week, we looked at Terry Fallis's The Best Laid Plans here on the Canada Reads site. This week, we're moving from the political ring to the athletics arena, as we turn our attention to Angie Abodu's The Bone Cage.......

The Canada Reads literary places contest

Last week, the Canada Reads debaters revealed their favourite characters from this year's novels. This inspired us to turn the tables and ask you: who is your favourite fictional character? Everyone from venomous villains to handsome heroes got a vote......

The Canada Reads team chooses their favourite scenes

The Canada Reads defenders are back this week, this time ready to declare their favourite scenes in their chosen books. From hovercrafts to healers, each scene is as striking and memorable as the last. How this team chose a favourite,......

Podcast: Ali Velshi talks The Best Laid Plans

As this year's Canada Reads debates draw closer — have you circled February 7, 8 and 9 on your calendar? — we're gearing up by putting the spotlight on each of the panelists. Last week, we caught up with Debbie......

Terry Fallis spins The Best Laid Plans playlist

Editor's note: We asked Terry to share five songs that he feels are most in tune with The Best Laid Plans. This is his response! A Good Song by Valdi This is a wonderful and largely forgotten song written by......

Brian Francis tackles The Best Laid Plans

I was watching an entertainment show the other night and saw a story most of you may be familiar with by this point. A homeless man from Ohio with a velvety radio voice has become an overnight sensation (a phrase......

Terry Fallis on how his best laid plans turned out better than planned

My best laid plans for my first novel did not unfold as... umm... planned. The idea had been to write a hilarious yet tender side-splitter of a manuscript, send it out to a raft of agents, then sit back and......

Meet CNN broadcaster Ali Velshi

Last week, we looked at Ami McKay's The Birth House here on the Canada Reads site. This week, we're going from small-town gossip to big-time politics as we turn our attention to The Best Laid Plans by Terry Fallis. We'll......

The Canada Reads favourite character contest

Last week, we wanted to know about your literary resolutions and did you ever come through! Many people resolved to read more, whether it was more Canadian books, more non-fiction, more genre books or just more in general. And many......

The Canada Reads team explores their favourite characters

Before the holidays, we had members of the Canada Reads team each pick a current contender to defend. They explored their chosen title's first impressions, essentialness and Canadianness. Now it is 2011 and the team is back in action. The first......

Podcast: Debbie Travis takes us to The Birth House

For the next five weeks, we'll be offering you a sneak peek at this year's panel...how they'll prep for the debates and why they think their book should come out on top. The first panelist we talked to was the......

Inside The Birth House: From design concept to cover

Editor's note: Back in 2006, when The Birth House was originally published, Ami McKay interviewed the talented designer behind the beautiful cover of her book, Random House's Kelly Hill. Ami was kind enough to let us reprint that interview below.......

Brian Francis moves into The Birth House

"We change, whether we like it or not." Ralph Waldo Emerson   Halifax underwent great change after the Halifax Explosion, an event that figures in Ami McKay's The Birth House. Image: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division   It's......

Kitchen ghosts and a birth house

My house stands at the edge of the earth. Together, the house and I have held strong against the churning tides of Fundy. Two sisters, stubborn in our bones. Ami's home in Scots Bay during restoration work Just over a......

Meet design maven Debbie Travis

Greeting the new year is doubly exciting for the Canada Reads team, because it means we're edging closer to the debates. We can't wait to get our panelists in the ring and see what happens! In the meantime, there's plenty......

The Canada Reads resolution contest

We were full of the festive spirit last week and wanted to know which Canada Reads panelist you'd like to have over for dinner. These panelists are all lively people and any one of them would pack a punch (some metaphorically,......

Listen to the Canada Reads 2011 authors on The Next Chapter

Shelagh Rogers interviewed each of the Canada Reads 2011 authors for The Next Chapter. These interviews aired weekly from November 29, 2010 to December 27, 2010. Ami McKay talked about how her own home inspired the story that would becomeThe......
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