I can’t believe it! They eliminated by far the best book! I can only think of one reason the Canada Reads panelists removed the wonderful book The Boat People on their first day of debating and that is because they were being protective of their own books. They knew Sharon Bala’s novel was the best and so they decided getting rid of it would give their books a better chance.
So…………now I have to pick another winner and I’m going to choose The Marrow Thieves. This is a story set in a future when global warming has devastated much of the earth. Most people no longer have dreams but indigenous people still do and so they are being hunted by ‘recruiters’ who want to harvest their bone marrow thinking it holds the key to recovering the ability to dream. The story centers around a strong group of indigenous people unrelated to one another and from different First Nations who have banded together and become a family as they flee from the recruiters. I really think this book should win because ……………
- Although the main character is a young sixteen year old boy named Frenchie there are some wonderfully strong female characters in the book like the old woman Minerva -full of courage and tradition, the little girl RiRi full of curiosity and liveliness and the young woman Rose full of rebellion and independence.
- The book ably covers two issues very important to Canadian society- climate change and reconciliation with our First Nations.
- This is a young adult novel and I want it to win because more people need to discover that books labeled young adult can be great adult reading too.
- Unlike American War, the other Canada Reads novel set in a dark future The Marrow Thieves actually leaves one with some semblance of hope for our world and has likeable characters you can cheer for.
- We are constantly rethinking just exactly how the word ‘family’ should be defined and have come to realize families can each look very different. The Marrow Thieves really makes us think about what it means to be part of a family and not just your biological family.
I am almost scared to pick a new book to win Canada Reads when my initial choice was eliminated on the first day. I hope The Marrow Thieves fares better today. Whatever the outcome I’ll blog again tomorrow about one of the other books.