Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Last Canadian Challenge?

I would say like most things, the Canadian Challenge seems to be winding down in a way.  I just sense less general enthusiasm for it, though maybe that is just my own feelings about it, which I am then attributing to others.  I'll sign up one more time this July.  I'm not sure I will do so again, though I certainly might.  I almost certainly wouldn't have maintained the blog as much as I did if it hadn't been for all these reviews.  In fact, that was almost the only time I blogged in 2012 (to catch up on book reviews), and then I started branching out...  While my official reading list has relatively few Canadian authors towards the top, I can certainly move a few things around and bring some books off of my library reserve list as well.

Working on the assumption that this might be the last time I formally participate in the Challenge, here are some books that I will aim to review (R marks a re-reading but first time reviewing):
Atwood The Onyx and Crake dystopian trilogy
R Atwood The Edible Woman
Earl Birney Turvey
Bishop-Stall Ghosted
Bissoondath Doing the Heart Good
Morley Callaghan The Loved and the Lost
Morley Callaghan Our Lady of the Snows
Roch Carrier La Guerre Trilogy
Wayson Choy The Jade Peony & All That Matters
R Robertson Davies The Deptford Trilogy
R Findley Famous Last Words
Findley Piano Man's Daughter 
Mavis Gallant A Fairly Good Time
Mavis Gallant The Cost of Living
Graeme Gibson Five Legs/Communion
R Robert Kroetsch Completed Field Notes (poetry)
Vincent Lam Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures
Margaret Laurence The Diviners
Margaret Laurence The Stone Angel
John Lavery Sandra Beck
(A couple more by) Alice Munro: Open Secrets & The Love of a Good Woman
R Carol Shields Larry's Party
R Skvorecky The Bass Saxophone
Skvorecky Dvorak in Love
Russell Smith How Insensitive & Noise
Miriam Toews All My Puny Sorrows
R Vanderhaege My Present Age
Vanderhaeghe Homesick
Helen Weinzweig Basic Black with Pearls
Ethel Wilson Swamp Angel
Adele Wiseman Crackpot

This would be a fairly solid list to work through, even if it took two years rather than one (and picking up a few left-overs here as well).  Sort of in the back of my mind, after I review these books, the remaining 5 Alice Munro story collections, a few more Findley's and the core Margaret Laurence novels, I might feel I've really said all I have to say about the core Canadian canon (such as it is).  That doesn't mean I wouldn't still occasionally review, and I assume I would blog on other topics, but I might not be so focused in my reviews.  Of course, that is just how I feel now.  I might feel very differently in 2020...

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