Posted on December 11, 2016
Kamal Al-Solaylee has a background in journalism and is a professor at Ryerson University. His accomplishments are long and varied. He presented his second book, Brown: What Being Brown in the World Today Means (To Everyone). It was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award for English-language non-fiction.
Steve Paikin also has an extensive background in journalism and is the anchor of TVO’s The Agenda with Steve Paikin. His stories about how he came to write Bill Davis: Nation Builder, and Not So Bland After All were entertaining and informative. Considered one of Ontario’s most important premiers, Davis was in office from 1971 to 1985.
Charlotte Gray and I work with the same brilliant editor, Phyllis Bruce, so we had met before. She is a much loved historian and author. Her latest book is The Promise of Canada: 150 Years — People and Ideas That Have Shaped Our Country. I’m intrigued by the influential Canadians she chose to write about, none of whom are prime ministers or hockey players!
I’m excited to read all three books, and thank Ben McNally for including me in today’s event!
Posted on December 31, 2012
One of the things I wanted to do during this holiday break was catch up on my reading. I have far more books than I could possibly get through in one calendar year. I keep buying them, intending to read them later. I also get a lot of books as gifts.
Of the books I did get to this year, Lawrence Hill’s The Book of Negros, was my favourite. It was published in 2007, and I wish I had gotten to it sooner! Hill’s protagonist, Aminata Diallo, who was abducted as a child from her village in West Africa and sold into slavery, continues to haunt me. The story had such an effect on me that I couldn’t pick up another book for two weeks.
I also thought Ins Choi’s play, Kim’s Convenience, was brilliant. The story hit close to home. Both Ins and I, although we have never met, immigrated to Canada in1975, and had families that worked in variety stores in downtown Toronto. I wrote about this play in an earlier blog.
Now that it is 2013, there are several lists of ‘the best books of 2012’ published everywhere. Here are a few to check out.