Taking a cue from CBC, Rossland Reads ramps up

Andrew Zwicker
By Andrew Zwicker
June 3rd, 2010

With the amount of rain and dark days we’ve been receiving this spring, it’s been a great time to catch up on our reading. As we (fingers crossed) start moving our reading locales out from under warm blankets to beaches, patios and sunny spots of grass, the Rossland Library has lined up a buffet of books for us. This summer will see the first Rossland Reads competition this summer, in which four local panelists will choose their favorite book and encourage others to read it.

The idea is for Rosslanders to read the selected books this summer and then participate in the competition come fall.

Carey Rudisill, a young mother, library director, and avid reader originally put forward the idea of organizing a Canada Reads-style event here in Rossland.

“I joined the library board on the public relations team and have been wracking my brain on what we could do to get more people involved with the library. We have wonderful events for kids and reading programs in the summer where a high school or university student comes in and runs the programs. I wanted to have something that the community could do even from home without having to necessarily go to the library. A lot of people seemed to like Canada Reads that Jian Ghomeshi does on CBC. I thought, ‘wouldn’t it be neat to have a small town version of that?’.”

Working alongside Alynn Smith and Jill Toombs, also of the library board, the event was put together with a local spin.

Following the same format as CBC’s event, one book has been chosen by each of the four panelists. Those titles are now announced and if people wish to read along, Cafe Books West is supporting the event by offering 10% off the Rossland Reads titles:

 Galore by Michael Crummey

The Republic of Nothing by Lesley Choyce

Jpod by Douglas Coupland

The Disappeared by Kim Echlin


“One of the fun things about books is how, just like people tend to trip over places like Rossland and discover how great this place they never hear of is, you tend to find books through happenstance,” added Rudisill. “I find books I haven’t heard of but end up loving through people recommending books that are not on a best seller list, necessarily, or ones that were written a while back.”

Deanne Steven of Tourism Rossland, Chris d’Oddorico of the Rossland Library board, Christine Demarco, a local teacher, and myself, Andrew Zwicker of the Rossland Telegraph, will begin defending our book choices in October. After reading each of the other three choices, the panelists will sit down to defend their book choice and ultimately vote one book off the list each week until the final Rossland Reads book is chosen.

As a participant, I’m looking forward to re-discovering my own book choice, The Republic of Nothing, as well as seeing what the others have chosen and talking books for a change of pace. Rudisill also looks forward to shifting the discussion in town, if only just temporarily, to a new subject.

“We talk a lot about biking and skiing in town and we’re a pretty well-rounded town, athletically. We want to spread the joy of reading and have something else to add to the town’s discussions and perhaps round it out a little more on the literary side,” added Rudisill. “Just like finding a new bike route or ski route: it’s a similar feeling when you find a new book.”

The debates and discussions each week will be video taped with Carey Rudisill as moderator and hosted in audio format on the group’s blog. The blog is up and running now at http://rosslandreads.wordpress.com/.



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