Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Canada Reads Recap

Since I was horribly slow at reading Canada Reads books, I figured I would write a recap post that summarizes. I mean, Katy already filled you in on all of them- no point repeating entries. Right? Ya, I know, I am lazy.

So first book to be disqualified on Canada Reads was Doug Coupland's Generation X. No surprise there- it was not a good book. I am going to be honest; I made it about 20 pages in and then returned it to the library. There was just no connection for me to the characters. None at all. I like Hey Nostradamus! but Generation X was just not for me. After reading Katy’s blog about it, I did not regret returning it after only a few pages.

Next to get the boot was Fall on Your Knees. Alright, I didn’t make it through this one either. I mean, I just got bored. I was not in the mood. Ok, I should have tried harder with the Canada Read thing, but what can you do. I was pretty surprised it was the second book to go. I was the most popular book of the lot. It has received a lot of press and is quite popular. But alas, not even popularity can save you on Canada Reads.

To bring it to two, Good to a Fault was eliminated. That meant that my two favorite reads (i.e. the ones I made it all the way throug), The Jade Peony and Nikolski were the final two. I mean, it made sense to me, those were great books! Katy and I have both posted about The Jade Peony already and we both really enjoyed it. I have now read two Choy books on this journey and he really is a great writer. Top Two definitely deserved! As you all know (I assume if you are interested enough to read a blog on Can Lit, you may also follow Canada Reads), Nikolski won.

And Katy has posted on Nikolski already, but I haven’t, so I will just take a minute to describe my feelings on it. I really liked it for a few reasons. First, all the characters were intriguing. Often books that jump between different plot lines are not enjoyable to me. I tend to like one story more than the other so skip ahead and read those parts. With Nikolski, however, I was intrigued by all characters and as the connection between them was exposed, I enjoyed the novel even more. They weren’t forced connections or unrealistic, but simple stories that just passed by each other.

I was also a fan of the Canadian-ness of the book- it was subtle, but Dickner managed to work in a distinctly Canadian flavour to the story. Whether it was the setting of Montreal, or the details of family members roving across the country (from postal outlet to postal outlet) I felt a very strong Canadian connection, which is nice in a Quebecois book (definitely no separatism here!).

Nikolski had a wonderfully modern feel to it, without being weird (*cough* Copeland) and definitely deserved the nod from Canada Reads. I was excited it won. So now, go out and buy it!

So there is your Canada Reads conclusion from the blog. Katy and I both liked the same books and predicted the same winner. We must be twins and psychic.

Next up for me: A quick review of a “For Dummies” book and I am part way through Life of Pi

- Tory

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