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Queen’s Reads author to visit Kingston

Program organizers are preparing to welcome Katherena Vermette to campus, and announce winners of  creative  contest.

Queen’s Reads held a well-attended discussion panel in November about The Break in November, featuring professors and students providing their perspectives on the book. (Supplied Photo)
Queen’s Reads held a well-attended discussion panel about The Break in November, featuring professors and students providing their perspectives on the book. (Supplied Photo)

If you have yet to pick up your free copy of this year’s Queen’s Reads book, The Break, there is still plenty of opportunity to be a part of the conversation.

Students have been invited to participate in a creative contest on the themes of identity and resilience, and the common reading program is hosting author Katherena Vermette for a talk and book signing session. Ms. Vermette will be discussing The Break at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on Wednesday, March 7 at 7 pm. The event is being hosted through a partnership between Queen’s and Kingston Writer’s Fest. All tickets for the event went quickly, including seats reserved for students, but there is a waitlist

“We are very excited to welcome Ms. Vermette to Kingston and to learn more about her work and writing process,” says Lindsay Heggie, an organizer with Queen's Reads. “Queen's Reads has been tremendously successful, with 4,200 books already distributed and many events which have allowed the Queen’s community to explore questions of identity, overcoming adversity, and some of the challenges faced by Canada’s Indigenous Peoples.”

Following the talk, the Agnes is encouraging guests to stay and visit Kent Monkman’s Shame and Prejudice art exhibit.

In 2017, The Break was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award, shortlisted for CBC’s Canada Reads, and received the Amazon First Novel award. This bestseller is an important new work of Canadian literature that tells an intergenerational story of a Métis family as they navigate the effects of trauma.

Queen’s Reads is a common reading program that aims to engage the Queen’s community in a dialogue. The initiative aims to explore themes around difference and diversity in connection with identity, reflecting on stories of resiliency, identifying the internal and external skills, strengths, and resources that members of the Queen’s community draw on in overcoming adversity.

As part of this year’s campaign, students are invited to submit an original work on the theme of “Identity and Resilience”. Submissions may include writing, media, and art, and are due to student.experience@queensu.ca by end of the day on Monday, February 19. The top three entries will be featured on the Queen’s Reads blog and the winning authors will each receive a $100 gift certificate for the Queen’s Bookstore.

This year, Queen’s Reads was extended beyond its previous focus on first-year students to include the broader Queen’s community – undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and staff. Visit queensu.ca/studentexperience/queensreads to learn more about Queen’s Reads.