Nov 06, 2023
July is the month we are all usually thinking about Canada but November also has some noteworthiness when it comes to celebrating what’s good about this nation. Canada History Week takes place November 20-26 helping you to reflect and engage with Canada’s past. This year’s theme is the History of Black Achievement in Canada.
Also, November 8th is I Read Canadian Day – it’s for the kids but there is so much out there for adults too, why not partake for your November book club?
This month you can read Africville by Jeffrey Colvin, a debut novel that shines a light on the Black experience in Canada. It is a “penetrating and fresh look at the indomitable spirit of Black pioneers and their descendants”. The author is American, but he turns Canadian history into a gripping and engaging family story. OPL has multiple copies available digitally in eBook.
If you’d rather listen this month then try Rick Mercer’s Final Report. We have enough copies in eAudio for your whole book club to take out at once this month. This book is a series of brilliant essays where Rick shares his memories from the 15 years of his show. Remember when he and Jann Arden travelled by helicopter to a terrifying bat cave in a mountain? No—because that trip went so horribly wrong it never made it to the screen. For more crazy stories and Rick Mercer’s best rants try Final Report.
For book clubs in French, here are some titles that are sure to inspire great discussions!
Le violon d’Adrien is a novel about a poor child from Haiti who longs to own a violin. Adrien grows up in an unimaginably difficult world and the reader witnesses the heartbreaking situations he must contend with. Gary Victor has won many literary prizes and in 2001 was made Chevalier de l'ordre national du Mérite de la République française.
Guy Bélizaire was born in Cape Haitien and has lived in Quebec for 40 years. The audiobook version of A l’ombre des érables et des palmiers was produced by Ottawa publisher L’Interligne. The collection of 14 short stories explores various topics such as love, aging, and racism and take place in Canada and Haiti.
Suggestions and Resources for a successful online Book Club
In order to have your Book Club take place online you can try creating Facebook groups, or using various social media channels to discuss books. Or you could try meeting live via online video conferencing tools. The following tools are free:
- Google Hangouts provides free video/chat/voice conferencing and does not have a time limit
- Jitsi is a free open source video conferencing tool
- In French, there is a platform built by Les libraires that allows book clubs to meet online! You can request to create your own club, or there are groups that are already running that you can join.
- All book clubs, including the current book club picks and comments, are visible to anyone accessing the site Le Regroupement des éditeurs franco-canadiens is offering a monthly book club called D’un océan à l’autre – here is more information (in French only), and the books available at OPL!
Finding eBooks and eAudiobooks for your Book Club
- Always Available eAudio from OverDrive – many great Book Club reads in this list
- Books with 100 simultaneous checkouts -- this new format offered by publishers to libraries lets your whole book club borrow a book at once!
- Always Available ebook Classics from Duke Publishing
- OPL streaming eBook and eAudio collections
- Some French publishers OPL purchases from through Cantook Station offer many loans of the same title at once. You can search the Cantook platform for these publishers and make your choice. Participating publishers include Gallimard, Actes Sud, Rivages, POL, Flammarion, and Payot
- Radio-Canada offers free “Always Available” French eAudio - stream from the ICI Première website or download the Radio-Canada OHdio app.
- D'un océan à l'autre | club de lecture 2021
Contact OPLs InfoService 613-580-2940 if you need help accessing these titles and resources
Hosting and Discussions
If you would like discussion questions for your book, here is a list of 40 Great Book Club Discussion Questions from Book Riot. They work for any book.
Here are some great tips about how to host an online book club from Bustle Magazine: 10 Tips For Hosting A Digital Book Club