Today I’m going to try to give you an idea of just what Canada Reads 2009 is about and how it works.
Canada Reads is a literary debate that takes place from March 2 to March 6, 2009, but since it is about books people need time to read them. The chosen titles were revealed to all on November 25, 2008 during an official kick-off presentation. (A video of the kick-off is below)
Okay, so there’s a debate about books, but who’s presenting the arguments and how were the books picked? What happens is every year the people over at CBC look all over the country for 5 interesting, unique and bookish Canucks to participate as Panelists. Once they find the perfect group, these Panelists must then each choose one Canadian book and prepare to defend it’s place as the best of the best. The Panelists are free to choose any book they please, as long as it’s a work of Canadian fiction. Over the course of 5 days there will be 5 half-hour debates, at the end of each discussion one book will be voted out (think literary Survivor). And the last book standing is crowned the Canada Reads 2009 Winner.
What makes this event so amazing is that it combines so many different forms of media. Books, Radio, Internet, Satellite Radio, Podcasts and online audio/video. Right now, if you head over to CBC.ca where the CanadaReads website is hopping with action. There are lots of audio and video clips featuring information on Canada Reads 2009 and past events, the Panelists, the books and the authors.
Since the debates won’t be happening until March, you have lots of time to check out the 5 books chosen this year. Believe me, reading the books and then listening to the debates is awesome. You get so much more from your reading after hearing people discussing the pros and cons of a book. Plus, it’s fun to see such heated and passionate defence of literature.
This event isn’t solely for entertainment though, it also benefits many different people and organizations. The Panelists all donate copies of their chosen books to libraries across Canada, as well as extra copies of the winning novel. To increase and support literacy Canada Reads works together with the publishers of the 5 novels. Additionally, the publisher of the Canada Reads 2009 winning novel will make a donation to a national Canadian literacy organization – this year they are supporting the National Indigenous Literacy Association. And finally, Canadian authors, publishers, librarians and teachers have all spoken up and pronounced that this event greatly increases interest in Canadian Fiction.
Another super-fun thing to participate in (and we know bloggers love a challenge) is the Canada Reads 2009 Reading Challenge presented by Roughing It In The Books where participants can take on the challenge of reading all 5 books.
In the next few weeks, I will be featuring lots more on Canada Reads 2009, such as author bio’s, information on the panelists, and of course more about the books themselves including sneak peeks, reviews and much more! I will also be hosting a giveaway after the wrap up. So be sure to follow along, pick the book you think will win and discover some great new Canadian Literature.
Now that you know what Canada Reads is all about, here is where you can find the books. As an added bonus, if you purchase the books through the CBC CanadaReads Boutique you will receive an official Canada Reads tote-bag free!
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