Canada Reads, CBC's battle of the books, reveals titles and champions

Canada Reads, CBC's annual battle of the books competition, has revealed this year's roster of panelists and contending books on Tuesday.

Debates for the 14th annual competition take place March 16-19

Canada Reads 2015 kicks off four days of literary debate on Monday. Meet this year's panellists, from left, Cameron Bailey, Kristin Kreuk, Wab Kinew, Martha Wainwright, Elaine 'Lainey' Lui, and Craig Kielburger. (Pascal Chiarello/CBC)

Acclaimed books about teenage sexuality, the immigrant experience, and the treatment of aboriginal people in this country are among the selections for CBC's Canada Reads competition.

The short list of books to be debated by high-profile personalities in the annual literary event includes the young-adult title When Everything Feels Like the Movies by Vancouver-based Raziel Reid, which recently won a Governor General's Literary Award.
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      The novel is inspired by the true story of Lawrence (Larry) Fobes King, an openly gay 15-year-old who was shot to death by an eighth grade classmate inside a school in Oxnard, Calif., in 2008. The incident happened after he'd asked the teen who was convicted in his murder to be his valentine.

      Defending the book will be Elaine Lui, a famed gossip blogger and co-host on the CTV daytime talk show The Social.

      Broadcaster Elaine "Lainey" Lui is championing When Everything Feels like the Movies for Canada Reads 2015. She tells CBC's Jelena Adzic what reading means to her. 3:04
      • On mobile? Watch Lui defend her book here

      Also part of the competition is the Governor General's Award-winning Ru by Montreal-based Kim Thúy, about a Vietnamese family adjusting to a new life in Quebec.

      It will be championed by Cameron Bailey, artistic director of the Toronto International Film Festival.

      TIFF's artistic director, Cameron Bailey, describes his strategy for defending Kim Thúy's Ru, as translated by Sheila Fischman, to CBC's Jelena Adzic. 1:52
      • On mobile? Watch Bailey defend Ru here

      Meanwhile, children's rights activist Craig Kielburger will be on the panel with The Inconvenient Indian by Thomas King of Guelph, Ont., which has won a British Columbia National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction and an RBC Taylor Prize.

      The short list is rounded out by And the Birds Rained Down by Jocelyne Saucier, which will be championed by singer-songwriter Martha Wainwright, and Intolerable: A Memoir of Extremes by Kamal Al-Solaylee, which will be defended by actress Kristin Kreuk.

      Actress Kristin Kreuk tells CBC's Jelena Adzic why she's defending Kamal Al-Solaylee's memoir Intolerable in CBC's annual battle of the books. 2:40
      • On mobile? Watch Kreuk defend Intolerable here

      Wab Kinew will host this year's instalment of Canada Reads, replacing fired CBC Radio personality Jian Ghomeshi.

      The week-long contest sees Canadian personalities defending a homegrown book — either fiction or non-fiction — in a series of debates that air on the public broadcaster's radio, TV and online platforms. The books are eliminated one by one until a winner is declared.

      With files from CBC News