Why Chick-Lit Matters

Some chick-lit books are better than others. I thought Bridget Jones was quite a howl. There’s good, bad and mediocre in everything. If you really wanted to, you could say the original chick-lit book is Pride and Prejudice. So what is it, if it’s about young women we’re not supposed to take it seriously? It should be judged on its merits like everything else. A lot of the books we regard as classics were thought of as cheap junk when they came out. Dracula by Bram Stoker is one; so is Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. There’s a long list.Margaret Atwood in

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Freedom to Read

Margaret Atwood – The Handmaid’s Tale John Ball – In the Heat of the Night Harper Lee – To Kill a Mockingbird Anthony Burgess – A Clockwork Orange Timothy Findley – The Wars William Golding – Lord of the Flies Alice Munro – Lives of Girls and Women Mordecai Richler – The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz J.K. Rowling – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone John Steinbeck – Of Mice and Men Laura Ingalls Wilder – On the Banks of Plum Creek These are just a few of the books that are part of the Challenged Books List. The list,

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Why Book Clubs Matter

After writing the post, “Snarky Over Bookclubs…“, I decided to ask a few people what they’ve gained from the book club experience. Here’s what one woman had to say… As a SAHM (stay at home mom) it is important for me because I get supportfrom other mothers. Not only do we discuss the novelsbut we discuss current events, our family, our lives.It’s almost like a quilting bee for us except we don’tquilt [laughing] I like to read the novels that othershave chosen and go outside of my comfort zone. When Isay that, I mean that some of the selections I

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Snarky Over Book Clubs…

In a recent CBC Arts online rant, Book Club Virgin, (And Proud Of It: The Scorn of the Solitary Reader, Li Robbins takes aim at book clubs and the publishers who love them. I’ve been invited to join book clubs, and while outwardly I might politely smile, inwardly I heave. It’s a prospect I find about as appealing asattending the Canadian Academic Accounting Association’s annual Christmas party. (Although, come to think of it, the CAAA might at least have decent booze. I’m willing to bet the majority of book clubs are strictly President’s Choice Chai (decaf) or at best, white

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Honest Words

When I was a teenager I had a friend who always said just the right thing to make me laugh (the almost-pee-my-pants variety). And just when I thought I’d caught my breath, he’d turn the conversation on its head and say something really profound. Once, while sitting in the bleachers at a high school football game, he was goofing around, adding adjectives to the word wombat… “hairy wombat”, “mercenary wombat”, prodigious wombat”…then he said, “What do you think happens after we die?” I spilled half my hot chocolate down my marching band uniform. “Geez, I don’t know…do you?” He just

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