At the sixth annual Georgian Bay Reads competition on Saturday, October 25, Wasaga Beach Public Library (WBPL) board member Lorraine Gruzuk successfully defended her Canadian novel, Elizabeth and After by Matt Cohen, and was named the winner of the battle of the books.
Georgian Bay Reads brought together representatives from the Clearview, Collingwood, Meaford, the Town of Blue Mountains, and Wasaga Beach public libraries, who each picked a novel by a Canadian author and attempted to convince the other panelists that it was the best. The survivor-style showdown took place at the Wasaga Beach RecPlex and was moderated by town treasurer Monica Quinlan. The big book debate featured lively discussion, big laughs and eloquent pleas as the members of the panel voted off books one-by-one.
Although the polled audience of approximately 240 avid book lovers voted The Orenda by Joseph Boyden as the People’s Choice, Clearview Public Library’s Danielle Ounsey could not convince the panel of its merit. Gruzuk’s choice of a small town story of an absentee father’s return to his roots also beat out Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale defended by Collingwood resident John Eaton, Leonard Cohen’s Beautiful Losers defended by Blue Mountain’s Rosemary Gosselin, and Judy Fong Bates’ Midnight at the Dragon Café defended by Audrey Lamrock of Meaford.
This is the third time in six years that WBPL has won Georgian Bay Reads. The trophy is now on display in the library.