Meh, says she. Why do we line up for prize listed books?* Because we’re told to. And like good Canadians, we likes to be linin’ up, whether fer da books or at da Tim Hortons fer our double-doubles, eh?
Like everyone else, I have followed the coverage and pondered the obvious: When exactly did Douglas Coupland find time to write another novel? Who does Annabel Lyon’s hair? Is Margaret Atwood pissed?
One thing I have not wondered, however, is which of the anointed books to add to my shelf, worthy efforts though I’m sure they are. You read that right: This fall, I won’t be reading any of the books that are nominated for Canadian literary prizes. And I don’t feel guilty about it either.
This is one of her better columns, but my bet is that most of you (ie, “everyone else”), like me, probably didn’t pause to wonder who does Annabel Lyon’s hair. But that’s just a guess. I could be wrong. I could be wrong.
* Better question: Do we (ie, everyone else/Canadians) line up for prize listed books or is it just we (ie, lit types) who line up for prize listed books? ‘Cause I just don’t see the sales numbers jumping on most shortlisted titles.