Canada Reads @ the Library: Radicalized by Cory Doctorow

Defended by Scott Hayes

Radicalized is about all of us in the world right now. It’s more than a bit dystopic yet so much is like holding a mirror up to our society. Cory Doctorow’s book of 4 sci-fi novellas feels so relevant, so relatable, so scary, yet it still has moments of humour and irony and absurdity. That about sums up our life and times, no? If you’ve been paying attention to the news of the world and haven’t felt a little ‘radicalized’ already then reading this book will surely help to make you more aware of the invisible forces that control our lives, and maybe how we can control them back. Maybe.

Honestly, I think it should win the Nobel Prize for prescience and for offering some comfort during our crazy, calamitous COVID-19 times.

Canada Reads @ the Library: Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club by Megan Gail Coles

Defended by Jason Purcell

Megan Gail Coles’s Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club throws into high relief the intersecting conditions—ongoing colonialism, racism, misogyny and violence against women, capitalism and the failures of resource extraction, among others—that converge to mark Canadian life. This novel reminds us how inextricable any one social issue is from any other, and brings into focus a vision of Canada that resists the national mythology.

Joanne’s Mystery Picks

Grace is Gone
By Emily Elgar

Meg and her severely disabled daughter, Grace, have been residents of the small town of Ashford in Cornwall, for many years.  Meg is admired by her neighbours for her selflessness in caring for her daughter and Grace is genuinely loved by all who know her.  

So when Meg is found brutally murdered in her bedroom and Grace is nowhere to be found, the townsfolk are shocked beyond belief.  Police immediately set out to find Meg’s estranged husband whom she always contended was abusive to her and Grace.

Meanwhile an unlikely pair team up to search for Grace:  Jon Katrin, a journalist, whose coverage of Meg and Grace’s story backfired, resulting in his shunning by the community, and Cara, a sometimes friend of Grace.

The suspense had been built up nicely to this point and then Elgar got sloppy.  Jon and Cara proceeded to carry out their search based purely on supposition and “what ifs”, which left me shaking my head in wonder.  I already had the mystery figured out by this point, but was sorely disappointed that Elgar left me questioning the credibility of her characters.

Grace is Gone is available in eBook format on Hoopla.

                                      Joanne gives this book 3 daggers out of 5