Canada Reads 2020

Five books, five champions, one winner: CBC's annual Battle of the Books has been getting people listening, watching and reading since 2001. Canada Reads is a "literary Survivor," with celebrities championing books. Books are voted "off the bookshelf" until one book is chosen as the title the whole country should read this year. The 2020 theme is One book to bring Canada into focus. In this collection, hear from the writers of this year's shortlisted books, past Canada Reads champions on their debating tips, and past contenders.

Below, check out our How to Use Canada Reads in the Classroom teacher guide, along with book excerpts and backgrounders for the 2020 books.

Watch or listen to CBC's Canada Reads debates March 16-19, 2020 at cbc.ca/canadareads.

  • 2018
  • 13-14
  • 21 Titles

Included in this collection

CBC Books Canada Reads: Cameron Bailey on the art of debate

Artistic director of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), past panellist and winner of Canada Reads 2015, Cameron Bailey shares what he should have paid more attention to from the beginning when defending the book Ru by Kim Thúy, plus other debating tips.
  • 2018
  • 00:07:14
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/16/2018

CBC Books Canada Reads: Elaine "Lainey" Lui on the art of debate

Elaine "Lainey" Lui is proud of her competitive spirit and argues for the importance of women showing their competitive side, along with other aspects of her debating strategy. She defended Raziel Reid's debut novel When Everything Feels like the Movies in Canada Reads 2015.
  • 2018
  • 00:07:54
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/16/2018

CBC Books Canada Reads: Humble The Poet on the art of debate

Writer and rapper Humble The Poet talks about the importance of letting the other person know that you hear what they have to say, along with other debating tips. He championed the André Alexis novel Fifteen Dogs and emerged the winner on Canada Reads 2017.
  • 2018
  • 00:08:58
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/16/2018

CBC Books Canada Reads: Kristin Kreuk on the art of debate

Actress Kristin Kreuk emphasizes the importance of being prepared for difficult conversations, plus other debating advice. She defended Kamal Al-Solaylee's memoir Intolerable in Canada Reads 2015.
  • 2018
  • 00:07:19
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/16/2018

CBC Books Canada Reads: Stephen Lewis on the art of debate

Former UN ambassador Stephen Lewis stresses the importance of being well-organized, but also maintaining the ability to enjoy a great argument from another debater (like Wab Kinew). Stephen defended The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood in Canada Reads 2014.
  • 2018
  • 00:08:48
  • 13-14
  • Added on: 03/19/2018