Today I morn the loss of Michel Tremblay’s novel The Fat Woman Next Door is Pregnant from the possible contenders in Canada Reads 2009. I know that I said I mentioned in the comments of yesterdays post but since then I’ve read more of the book and I’m loving the characters in the novel just as I love many of the other characters Tremblay has introduced me to. The final decision came down to Sarah Slean (how could you Sarah?) because a tie needed to be broken between Tremblay’s book and The Outsider by Gil Andamson.
I’m going to start today with a bit of a rant, so excuse me for a moment while I get this off my chest. We’re getting near the end of Canada Reads 2009, only one day to go, and Jian Ghomese is still asking everyone, still in the running, to summarise their novel. I think the people that are listening have heard enough about these book and do not need to be told again what the novels still in contention are about. I really hope that last two don’t have to do this again tomorrow.
The big question today was what book brought you something new, something you didn’t know or a new experience? Great question posed by a great host. It seemed that many learned something, not surprisingly from Lawrence Hill’s The Book of Negroes. I would have to say that I learned the most from this novel as well, I had no idea that Freetown in Sierra Leone was founded by free slaves that got to Nova Scotia/New Brunswick from the USA. I found the final chapters of that novel to be the most interesting.
Others answered the question by saying they learned a lot about Sarnia from Fruit. But then again who knows all that much about Sarnia to begin with? Ghomese’s question caused everyone to do some thinking and really got me thinking. I didn’t really think that learning something new is all that important when suggesting a novel to a nation. I tend to think that the more someone knows about a particular subject the more they would get out of a novel dealing with that subject. I think I would have got more out of The Book of Negroes if I knew more about it before reading it.
I’m now curious to see if The Outlander will come back from it’s near defeat today. I’m really interested to see what happens tomorrow and which two books will be the ones duking it out for the coveted title. Now this probably isn’t the best reason for not wanting a book to win but I don’t want The Book of Negroes to win because it’s already got so much attention, I’d like to see something else get the spot light introducing Canadians to a new book.