August 26

One Book, One Calgary


I am pleased, and surprised, to announce that the Calgary Public Library has chosen Walls: Travels Along the Barricades as their 2014 ‘One Book, One Calgary’ selection. According to the OBOC website, the program is “designed to ignite community dialogue and enrich community connections through a shared reading experience.” I’m pretty sure this means that every single Calgarian is legally obligated to purchase and read the book. (Though I may have that wrong.)

Anyway, the OBOC program gets underway in November with a bunch of Walls-related events. A few feature me talking about one thing or another. I am doing a multimedia presentation for the program launch, for example, and a coffee and chat for the fifty-plus crowd. I am also doing a joint event with the CPL’s writer-in-residence Rosemary Nixon.

But there are some exciting events that, thankfully, don’t involve me at all. Patrick Finn of the U of C will talk about how walls can be both an obstacle and an inspiration to artistic creativity. Heike and Eric Urban will tell their love story of how not even the Berlin Wall could not keep them apart. There will be presentations on how rock music serves to break down political and social barriers, a film about the walls in Cyprus, and a talk about how the Eastern Front of WWI still resonates in regards to the conflict in Ukraine. The month concludes with a panel discussion featuring the personal stories of Calgarians who come from some of the world’s walled places. There is even an Instagram contest for Calgary wall photos. It is a veritable of month-long festival of barricades!

The CPL did a fantastic job curating this program. I couldn’t be more excited. You should all come.

Program and registration details can be found here.