What Is Stephen Harper Reading?

Somehow I missed this one and it took an article from the other side of the continent to snap me to attention:

The Canadian author Yann Martel, who wrote the best-selling novel Life of Pi, wants the country’s prime minister, Stephen Harper, to pay more attention to the arts. So Mr. Martel is sending him some reading. Mr. Martel said he was upset that Mr. Harper had appeared to pay no attention during a recent ceremony honoring Canadian artists, Reuters reported. “But he must have moments of stillness,” Mr. Martel said. “For as long as Stephen Harper is prime minister of Canada, I vow to send him every two weeks, mailed on a Monday, a book that has been known to expand stillness.” First up: The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy. There was no immediate comment from Mr. Harper’s office. Mr. Martel said he would post all selections and other developments on the Internet at whatisstephenharperreading.ca.

Yann Martel, you crack me up but might I suggest an alternate URL? whatistheretodoinsaskatoon.ca. Everyone, watch Martel’s website and you will hopefully have a better and more clever book list to discuss.

I hope it’s a short list.

8 responses to “What Is Stephen Harper Reading?”

  1. That’s not particularly fair is it, trying to ease someone into reading by recommending a Tolstoy?

    See now, I’ll probably never, ever read Life of Pi.

  2. What a great idea. But while fine for you Canadians, but what can we down here send to our Prez, Mr Bush, to read?

  3. Bush can read?!

    OK, OK, sorry, that was mean. But too tempting to pass up.

  4. I read somewhere that he liked books with animals; preferably ones that talk.


    Eragon? Collection of Aesop Fables?

  5. Maybe, he could read Life of Pi. It has a talking tiger, doesn’t it?

  6. No no Elliot. A perfectly fair comment. And relatively restrained from what we usually get. Actually, he can read but like a lot of college students these days won’t. Nothing moves, goes ‘boink’, or blows up, I guess.

    And I for one would be delighted if he would read “Life of Pi.’ But at the moment I am afraid I should expect ‘Ruby and Max.’

  7. To digress – around the time of the beginning of the second Iraq War I drew a portrait of President Junior to try and exorcise him from my mind. It sort of worked and he doesn’t bother me as much anymore. I feel sorry for you folks down there.

  8. Yann:

    Cast not pearls before swine.

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