Write Reads #46 The Year In Review

Hello, Dear Friends! Our deepest apologies to those of you who were expecting a podcast about Experimental Film. Sadly, it proved too difficult to obtain in our city of champions. If you were able to get your hands on a copy, and you read the book, there is a special offer for you in this podcast!

As we had no book to discuss, we decided to do one of these Year In Review type things. We think it turned out pretty well. Listen to it and let us know if you agree.


KIRT (Links go to podcasts):

  1. The Party Wall by Catherine Leroux
  2. A Profession of Hope by Jenna Butler
  3. The Outlander by Gil Adamson and The Horseman’s Graves by Jacqueline Baker
  4. The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman
  5. The Back of the Turtle by Thomas King

TANIA (Links go to Goodreads):

  1. The Party Wall by Catherine Leroux
  2. The Outlander by Gil Adamson
  3. The Horseman’s Graves by Jacqueline Baker
  4. The Back of the Turtle by Thomas King
  5. The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman

This episode also touches upon the much discussed “Shadow Canada Reads” that we plan to do in the coming year. We welcome your input for a theme to our show and will probably have a vote once we get some choices. What do you think of the Canada Reads Longlist and this year’s theme (whatever it may be)?

We also announce that our Kid’s Book Pick will be Kenneth Oppel’s The Nest. You should have no difficulty finding this book. We’ll be meeting to discuss it at some point in mid- January. Join us!

As a special treat to those of you who care, and who listen to the podcast long enough, we also discuss the Gilmore Girls Revival. SPOILER ALERT!

Other books mentioned in this podcast:


About writereads

A Canadian book club podcast that will change the world of literature forever.
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11 Responses to Write Reads #46 The Year In Review

  1. Gemma Files says:

    Hey, guys–Gemma Files here, author of Experimental Film. Please get in touch with me at filesgemma@gmail.com and I will send you a copy. I have ebooks or physical copies, whichever suits you best.

    • writereads says:

      Thanks, Rick! Any thoughts on the “Shadow Canada Reads”? – Kirt

      • Okay, so this is hilarious.

        I had first listened to just the Top Reads of the Year portion of the podcast. Like 2 weeks later (today) I came back and listened to the end. I totally missed the Canada Reads part! Hahahaha. So sorry for going AWOL on this. I laughed pretty hard about it this morning.

        But I am 100,000% in. We’ve kind of been talking/joking about this for a few years. I think it’s brilliant. Super pumped about it.

  2. lauratfrey says:

    Finally got a chance to listen!
    Did some research on Canada Reads (i.e. read Wikipedia)
    -Canada Reads has only had a stated theme since 2013.
    -Before 2011 the object was to choose “the book all of Canada should read”
    -In 2011 and 2012, they did special editions – 2011 was “most essential Canadian book of the last decade” and 2012 was non-fiction.
    -The themes for 2013-2016 were:
    -Turf wars (not really a theme; each of the five books represented a region of Canada)
    -A Novel to Change Our Nation (each book had a stated “theme”: First Nations, environment, racism, immigrant experience, gender inequality)
    -One Book To Break Barriers (no stated themes but, they were basically the same as previous year)
    -Starting Over (…?)
    -2017 “The One Book Canadians Need Now” is basically the same as the pre-2011 “Book Canadians Should Read” – I thought the “now” was implied, lol

    The problem with 2014 and 2015 was that it turns into a debate about which social justice issue is most important, which is never a good idea. It got to far away from “yeah but is this a good book”. The problem with the 2016 theme is that it made no sense 🙂

    So it kind of makes sense/is good to go back to the old “no theme” approach, I think. I actually never watched until 2014 so I have no idea how good those years were. May have to watch for research. Justin Trudeau was a contestant?? haha.

    SO for the Write Reads version, there are a bunch of directions you could take.
    -Take the same short list and same theme; each of us picks a book to defend (assuming we can agree? haha)
    -Take the same theme and we pick our own books
    -Throw it all out, pick different theme (or object; to me, it’s a contest, there should be an object or criteria, not a “theme”)

    Probably more I’m not thinking of. Kids need to go to bed so I’ll come back later and continue this very lengthy comment!

    • writereads says:

      I lean towards the third, “throw it all out” option. I’m not a proponent of including non-fiction, poetry, etc. in the list. Apples and oranges!
      Also, I’m right there with you on the “My Social Justice Issue Is Bigger Than Yours” objection.
      I also look forward to your further thoughts, as always. – Kirt

    • writereads says:

      I’m with the “throw it all out” as well. I was thinking of, instead of women’s issues in CanLit, maybe an actual literary debate like “best female character in CanLit.”
      Though, then I’d be torn between Morag (Diviners) and Leisl (Fifth Business)…and then Tania’s inner debate might ruin the whole thing before it even began :). -Tania

  3. Pingback: 2017 Reading Plans: Hello, boys | Reading in Bed

  4. One thing that always bugged me about Canada Reads is how little each contestant talked about their book in relation to the other books. It’s hard to argue in a convincing way unless you can talk intelligently about the other books in contention. So I’d like to have enough time in advance to be able to read all the books at the table.

    In terms of a theme, I think the theme has always been the weakest part of the program. if anything, the host (coughKirtcough) should introduce questions about themes throughout the discussion, but the whole thing doesn’t have to hang on one single concept, does it? I’m not convinced it does.

    Some other random ideas:
    – Everyone picks a small press book that they think deserves wide attention
    – Pick a year from the Giller and have a person defend each of the short listed books

    And for everyone’s sake, politics should be kept out of it LOL (this is what happens on Canada Reads every year)

    But you’re the brainchild (brainchildren?) of this thing so I’m totally on board with whatever you want to do.

  5. Naomi says:

    I like the idea of picking books that you think deserve more attention. Then they get it, whether they win or lose!

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