Timothy Winegard's choices for novels that could change Canada


Since Canada Reads is about finding novels to inspire change, we thought we'd turn to people actually making positive change in the world to share their book recommendations with us! 

Today we turn to historian, professor and former Canadian Forces officer Timothy Winegard. He's also the author of For King and Kanata: Canadian Indians and the First World War, which was published last year.

Here are novels Timothy thinks has what it takes to change Canada:

The Orenda by Joseph Boyden: "The Orenda is a fascinating journey of 'contact,' and its enduring legacies, between First Peoples and newcomers within the dynamics of the early settler-state society and native-newcomer relations, candidly written by Joseph Boyden, who is fast becoming the leading voice of contemporary Canadian literature."

The Alford Saga, Vol. 1-4 by Paul Almond: "The Alford Saga is an eight-book voyage of Canada from pre-Confederation immigration and Native-Newcomer relations, through our wars of nationhood (Boer War, WWI), through the Great Depression, as seen through the eyes and lives of generations of the Alford family."

The Stone Carvers by Jane Urquhart: "The Stone Carvers fixes the frameworks of immigration, war, remembrance and nationhood in a story written through the eyes and experiences of three generations of family, with the building and unveiling of the imposing Vimy Memorial as the backdrop."

The Hockey Sweater by Roch Carrier, translated by Sheila Fischman: The Hockey Sweater pulls at the heartstrings of remembrance, of our national game, of the innocence of childhood, and of a nation that grew up on frozen ponds and backyard rinks, impersonating our hockey heroes such as Maurice Richard, Gordie Howe, Bobby Orr, and Wayne Gretzky."

Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood: Alias Grace is part CSI, part Sigmund Freud, and part Susan B. Anthony and Margaret Sanger wrapped into the pages of one novel. Using the 1843 murders of Thomas Kinnear and his housekeeper Nancy Montgomery in Upper Canada/North York as the backdrop, Atwood depicts the cultural and social norms and changes of Canada during this time period in the fashion we have all become accustomed to from one of Canada's most prolific writers."

We put Timothy's picks to the Canada Reads test and he gets an all-clear, with the exception of The Alford Saga. Since The Alford Saga is technically a series (with four more books on the way), the Canada Reads team has decided that only the first book in this series, The Deserter, will be put to the vote. So which novel will it be, Canada? Cast your vote below by Sunday, October 20, at 11:59 p.m. ET!

What is the one novel that could change our nation?

Once you've voted, don't forget to submit your own recommendations here and enter our inspiring reads contest here!

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