Cast Your Vote: Witold Rybczynski's picks

UPDATE: This poll is now closed. Check out our other polls on our featured polls page!

There are a lot of great Canadian true stories out there. How is the regular reader going to sift through all of them? Recall the non-fiction classics? Unearth the much-loved but overlooked small press memoir? It's a difficult task. Which is why we aren't going to leave you to do it alone. We asked people from all across the publishing spectrum — booksellers, bloggers, publishers and more — to build their dream Canada Reads: True Stories list. We will roll these lists out through the Top 40 campaign. They can be a source of inspiration and a fantastic reading list, and they give these books an extra bump to make it to the next round in this year's debates. But you also get to have your say.

One of the non-fiction buffs we turned to was architect and author Witold Rybczynski.


Witold Rybczynski is a Canadian-American architect and author. After 20 years spent teaching at McGill University, he now lives in Philadelphia and is the Martin and Margy Meyerson Professor of Urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania. When we asked Witold for his Canada Reads: True Stories picks, these are the books he chose and his reasons why:

Oh Canada! Oh Quebec! by Mordecai Richler


Richler was a great novelist, but he was also Canada's premier non-fiction writer, bar none. Barbed, impassioned and beautifully written, this book of a certain era was first published in The New Yorker and became a national and provocative bestseller in book form. It had many repercussions at home, just as he intended.

The Death and Life of Great American Cities by Jane Jacobs


Written before Jacobs moved to Toronto, it is her great and lasting monument. The best book on North American urbanism written in the 20th century.

Accidental City: The Transformation of Toronto by Robert Fulford


Fulford, longtime editor of the late lamented Saturday Night, writes compellingly about his city. His story of Toronto is an interesting blend of history, urbanism, architecture and city life.

Which one of Witold's picks was your favourite? Vote for the book you'd most like to see on the Canada Reads: True Stories list. This poll closes on Sunday, October 16, at midnight ET.

Each vote counts as one point, and the 40 books with the most support will be named the Canada Reads: True Stories Top 40.

Want to submit a recommendation of your own? You can do so here!

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