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Is Truth Stranger Than Fiction?

Canada Reads is an annual literature competition between books chosen by well-known Canadian personalities. This year, for the first time ever, Canada Reads will be focusing on non-fiction books. In celebration of Canada Reads, CBC Thunder Bay has matched five local authors with this year's Canada Reads books. Listen to Superior Morning January 30 - February 4 for their reviews and verdicts on whether the truth really is stranger than fiction.

Canada Reads - Something Fierce Author Carmen Aguirre lived through a childhood of constant flux and constant danger, as part of the Chilean resistance movement. She tells about it in her memoire, Something Fierce, one of this year's Canada Reads books. We'll ask Northwestern Ontario poet Al Hunter whether he thinks the truth is stranger than fiction.
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Canada Reads - Prisoner of Tehran A harrowing story of a young girl, held as a political prisoner. We'll ask local author Duncan Weller what he thinks about the book Prisoner of Tehran
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Canada Reads - On a Cold Road Fans, vans, and beer cans. On A Cold Road by Dave Bidini is all about the gritty experiences of Canadian musicians on tour. We'll ask local author Heather McLeod whether truth is stranger than fiction in the world of travelling rockers.
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Canada Reads - The Game Is truth stranger than fiction, on the ice? We'll ask local author Amy Jones that question when she reviews The Game by Ken Dryden
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Canada Reads - The Tiger A man-eating cat stalks a Siberian village, in "The Tiger." We've tracked down local author Michael Christie, and asked him to sink his teeth into the book for our local version of Canada Reads.
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About the Participants

Jones.jpgOriginally from Halifax, Amy Jones is a graduate of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at UBC. Her short fiction has appeared in several publications, including Maisonneuve, The New Quarterly, Taddle Creek, and Best Canadian Stories 08 and 09. In 2006 she won the CBC Literary Award for Short Story in English. Her first short fiction collection, What Boys Like (Biblioasis, 2009) was the winner of the 2009 Metcalf-Rooke Award, and was short-listed for the 2010 ReLit Award. After living in Toronto, Vancouver, and Scotland, Amy now calls Thunder Bay home. Amy is reading Ken Dryden's The Game.

McLeod.jpgHeather McLeod is the author of Kiss Me! (I'm a Prince!) recently nominated for the 2012 Blue Spruce Award. She is a former CBC host, a journalist, songwriter and recording artist who toured North America throughout the mid-1990s. She now lives and farms at the northern edge of Thunder Bay with her family.Heather is reading Dave Bidini's On A Cold Road.

Weller.jpgDuncan Weller is a writer and visual artist. Primarily, he writes and illustrates children's picture books. His latest work, Rocket Fish, is a book of short stories for adults. Duncan displays his visual art at least once a year. His picture book, The Boy from the Sun, won two of Canada's top awards for children's books, the Governor General's Award and the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Picture Book Award. Nine new picture books will be launched this year as eBooks through his website, followed by a young adult novel, Undercats, as a printed work and eBook. This year Duncan travels to Africa and the Caribbean to do research for a children's graphic novel, Tiger Dream.Duncan is reading Marina Nemat's Prisoner of Tehran.

Hunter.jpgAl Hunter is the author of 3 books of poetry, Spirit Horses; The Recklessness of Love: Dreams & Regrets; and, thirdly, Beautiful Razor: Love Poems & Other Lies, which will be released in 2012. All are published by Kegedonce Press. His work has appeared in many North American and international journals and anthologies. Mr. Hunter is also a former Chief of the Rainy River First Nations. Renowned novelist and poet, Louise Erdich, writes, "Al Hunter's poems are healing songs for the earth and the human spirit. For the sake of the moon, for the sake of our hearts, I am glad he is writing." Al is reading Carmen Aguirre's Something Fierce.

Christie.jpgMichael Christie is the author of The Beggar's Garden, a linked collection of stories that won the Vancouver Book Award, was a finalist for the Rogers Writer's Trust Fiction Prize and was longlisted for the Giller. His work has been twice nominated for the Journey Prize and his book reviews appear semi-regularly in the National Post. He currently lives in his hometown of Thunder Bay, where he teaches creative writing at Lakehead University and is at work on a novel. Micheal is reading John Vaillant's The Tiger.