Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

CBC Canada Reads: Lisa Moore's February Crowned the 2013 Winner!

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CBC Canada Reads 2013 - The Final Decision

The 2013 edition of CBC Canada Reads with Jian Ghomeshi is being widely praised as one of the best incarnations of the competition ever.

For book lovers, the discussions, which focused closely on the books and — while firey — avoided personal attacks, were irresistible. Add to that several surprises and upsets along the way (notably the unexpected loss of fan favourite Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese on Day Three), and the week of debates became one of the most fascinating in recent years.

Going into yesterday's final debate, the last books standing were Newfoundland author Lisa Moore's February and CanLit classic Two Solitudes by the late Hugh MacLennan. The titles were represented by comedian Trent McClennan and actor Jay Baruchel respectively. The February 14th debate got a light-hearted start when host Jian Ghomeshi and each of the panellists discovered one guest had decided to put the "lover" in "book lover", leaving a Valentine at each seat around the table.

During most of the debate, it appeared the tide was turning in favour of Two Solitudes, but a surprising final vote saw panellist and historian Charlotte Gray break a tie (and a tense silence) by voting to keep February, thereby crowning it the winner.

The audience seemed to approve, echoing the latest fan poll, which saw February besting Two Solitudes in the public's opinion with a split of approximately 65% in favour of February at the time of the final debate.

Champion Lisa Moore and her defender, Trent McClellan are being interviewed on CBC's Q with Jian Ghomeshi this morning, and the coveted "Canada Reads effect" is likely to be enjoyed by all the books and particularly the winner in the coming months.

Readers are already buzzing about possible "concepts" for next year's Canada Reads, which this year was focused around the various regions of Canada, with one book representing each of five areas of the country. If you want to suggest your dream line up, CBC Books is inviting comments from fans on what they think would make the best hook for next year's competition. Suggestions so far include novelists under 30, mystery writers and a version of Canada Reads for children. Don't miss the chance to weigh in with your suggestion!

A final re-cap of 2013 Canada Reads with Jian Ghomeshi:

  • Representing British Columbia and Yukon: Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese (Douglas & McIntyre)

    Defended by Olympian Carol Huynh (voted off during the third debate)

  • Representing Prairies and North: The Age of Hope by David Bergen (HarperCollins Canada)

    Defended by sportscaster Ron MacLean (voted off during the first debate)

  • Representing Ontario: Away by Jane Urquhart (McClelland & Stewart)

    Defended by writer and academic Charlotte Gray (voted off during the second debate)

  • Representing Quebec: Two Solitudes by Hugh MacLennan (McClelland & Stewart)

    Defended by actor Jay Baruchel (voted off during the final debate)

  • Representing Atlantic Provinces: February by Lisa Moore (House of Anansi)

    Defended by comedian Trent McClellan (winner)

  • *For more Canada Reads goodness, check out our summary of the debates from Tuesday (the halfway point) and our interview series with the panellists and authors!*

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