Six days till Christmas, six literature buffs give us their reading suggestions

Here are the top picks from our colleagues at CBC Books and Plus on est de fous, plus on lit! Certain links are offered in French only.

With the holidays and some well-deserved time off (we hope!) just a few days away, what better way to relax than to catch up on your reading. Following are a few recommendations for books to keep you entertained during the Christmas break or between festivities.

Daphné Santos-Vieira @daphnesvieiraoneill_girlwhowas_cover
Canada Writes, CBC Montreal
For me, it would definitely be Heather O’Neill’s The Girl Who Was Saturday Night. Heather O’Neill has a way with words for telling compelling personal stories that feel real and really invested emotionally. So, she gets my vote!

frog musicAnn Jansen @StillReadsBooks
Senior Producer, CBC Books/Canada Reads
Frog Music is a vivid, pulsating account of love, murder and a search for justice set in 19th-century San Francisco. I love Emma Donoghue’s gender-bending accounts of women in earlier times and this book is a gripping high-stakes story.

NoraWebsterEleanor Wachtel @EleanorWachtel
Host, Writers and Company, CBC Radio One
ONE of my favourite novels of the year is Colm Tóibín’s Nora Webster; inspired by his mother, it’s a masterful portrait of a woman, a recent widow in her mid-40s, and of a society in small town Ireland in the late 1960s.

Noémie Désilets
Research, Plus on est de fous, plus on lit!, ICI Radio-Canada Première
Two books really stood out for me this year and, because they’re so different, I can’t pick a favourite!

Vie_litteraire_LaFiction: La vie littéraire by Mathieu Arsenault. It’s more than just a look at a literary industry in crisis and books as a dying art. For me, it’s primarily a book about the loss of inner life, and the role of culture as a way to leave something for posterity – a novel that perfectly reflects the times.

Non-Fiction: Sœurs volées. Enquête sur un féminicide au Canada by Emmanuelle Walter. Since 1980, nearly 1,200 aboriginal women have been murdered or gone missing in Canada with little public outcry. Walter goes beyond the statistics and tells the story of two missing teenagers, Maisy Odjick and Shannon Alexander. A gripping read.

Marie-France Lemaine @Mefel
Researcher, Plus on est de fous, plus on lit!, ICI Radio-Canada Première
tram-83Tram 83 by Fiston Mwanza Mujila (Métailié): Debut novel by a young writer from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The author takes us to the heart of a DRC mining town, a world of bars, cafes and brothels. By turns tragic and laugh-out-loud funny, the novel is bursting with life, sex, music, nightmares and poetry.

Englebert des collines by Jean Hatzfeld (Gallimard): Writer/Journalist Jean Hatzfeld has already penned three exquisite narratives about the tragedy in Rwanda. With Englebert des collines, he offers a moving account by a survivor of the genocide – an original and endearing character. And as always, Hatzfeld writes in that magnificent, poetic French so distinctive of Rwandans.

Marie-Louise Arsenault @plusonlit
Host and reporter, Plus on est de fous, plus on lit!, ICI Radio-Canada Premièrefeu de mon pere

Like her colleagues Noémie and Marie-France, Marie-Louise suggests two reading selections: one homegrown – Le feu de mon père by Michael Delisle – and the other from abroad – La petite communiste qui ne souriait jamais by Lola Fafond.


Useful reading links (in English and French)

Jacinthe Lacombe-Cliche, Senior Writer, Corporate Communications

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Seven days till Christmas, 7 gift suggestions for your loved ones

With the holidays fast approaching, here are 7 gift ideas from the CBC Shop for just about everyone on your list.

1. The host/hostess with the most/mostess:

glassesCBC 16oz Heritage Collection 4pk. Mixing Glass Set

Includes 4-pack box



2. The person in your life who’s always on the go:

sacCanada Reads Book Bag

This stylish multi-purpose bag is durable and has a zippered closure. Great way to carry your favourite books and accessories!



3. The athlete in your life:

bottleGem The Fade 23 oz Bottle

This appealing faded-colour design Tritan water bottle is designed with a twist-off coloured lid with matching carabiner. Bottle is BPA-free and designed with the CBC gem logo.



4. The thinker:

mrdBrowse through the selection of DVDs and CDs that range from history to comedy.



5. The fashionista:

sweaterBrowse through the selection of clothing for men and women.


6. For the little ones:

70s Retro Moosemoose

Maury the Moose! He’s cute, he’s cuddly and is the perfect gift for a child. 12″ tall, it’s safe for all ages. Includes blue knit sweater with the CBC retro 70s logo.



7.  The person who’s impossible to shop for:

giftCert 2Why not opt for a gift certificate to the CBC Shop? Online eCertificates are easy, efficient, and cost-effective, since the process is electronic (and fast!). Best of all: no shipping charge.



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Eight days till Christmas… 8 good reasons to take part in the Grande guignolée des médias

8Each year across the country, CBC and Radio-Canada hold charity events to help the less fortunate in local communities. For the past 23 years, ICI Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean has been organizing a holiday fundraising drive in its region.

What impact do these events have on the community? We asked Gaston Larouche, Director of the Chicoutimi soup kitchen, to remind us why it’s important to support the drive!

  1. Because the Guignolée helped raise $44,500 for the Chicoutimi soup kitchen this year, in addition to the food collected by Moisson Saguenay–Lac-St-Jean.
  1. Because these donations account for over 40% of the total yearly funding received by the Chicoutimi soup kitchen.
  1. Because it allows the organization to serve over 31,000 meals each year – enough to feed 50 to 80 people every lunch hour, 365 days a year.
  1. Because the face of poverty is changing. The less fortunate are increasingly younger, sometimes even in their twenties or thirties.
  1. Because people sometimes fall on hard times, lack education, or have mental/physical challenges. Quite often, they feel very alone as well.
  1. Because it’s about sharing. For some, a few dollars is a drop in the ocean; for others, it’s vital.
  1. Because if fundraising efforts fall short, the soup kitchen may have to shut its doors.
  1. Because the situation is improving in this region. Today, we serve 10,000 fewer meals each year than we did in the late 1990s. That’s good news!

Mr. Larouche has this message for the ICI Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean team: Thank you for all the years you’ve taken part in charity events. It’s had a noticeable impact on the community. By spreading the word and building momentum for the campaign, you’ve been a huge help! Please keep it up!

- Marie-Eve Desaulniers, Senior Advisor, Brand, Communications and Corporate Affairs

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Nine days till Christmas… 9 films to watch over the holidays!

The holidays are the perfect time to cozy up on the couch and rediscover the classics. Whatever the language, these films have a timeless quality. Check out the favourite picks of staff at Corporate Communications.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
Every year we try to watch National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It’s a fun reminder that Christmas is about family, even if they sometimes drive us crazy!

 December 21, 8:00 p.m., CBC Television
Melanie Miles, Writer/Editor

A Christmas Story
I love to watch A Christmas Story every year. There is something about the family dysfunction that makes me laugh. The family comes together in the end. It’s nostalgic for me as well.

 December 22, 8:00 p.m., CBC Television
Carolyn Bissett, Correspondence Coordinator

Alice au pays des merveilles (Alice in Wonderland) 
On Wednesday, December 24, amidst preparations for Christmas Eve dinner, I’ll be tuning in to Alice in Wonderland with my two daughters—only this time, we’ll be graduating from the original Walt Disney film to Tim Burton’s “edgier” version…

 Wednesday, December 24, 2:30 p.m., ICI Radio-Canada Télé
Myriam Ocio, Editor

Miracle on 34th Street 
I’ll be watching Miracle on 34th Street. I love this movie because it reminds me of how powerful we are, when we believe. It also proves that even Santa Claus has bad days too!

 December 25, 8:00 p.m., CBC Television
Sarah Lue, Social Media Advisor

Monsieur Lazhar 
I’ll no doubt be watching Monsieur Lazhar. I saw it at the movie theatre, and I’m keen to see it again for its touching subject and beautifully simple script.

 Thursday, December 25, 10:30 p.m., ICI Radio-Canada Télé
Miguelle Saulnier-Madore, Translator

Raison et sentiments (Sense and Sensibility)
On December 27, I’ll be watching Sense and Sensibility, Ang Lee’s adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel of the same name – because I’m a hopeless romantic and because of the film’s stunning sets and soft ambience.

 Saturday, December 27, 10:30 p.m., ICI Radio-Canada Télé
Jacinthe Lacombe-Cliche, Senior Writer

I will watch W.E., a British movie co-written and directed by Madonna. It’s a tragic and romantic story about the controversial relationship between the Duke of Windsor and an American woman. An interesting time travel also happens, in parallel with the story of a young woman passionate about this mythical love story.

 Sunday, December 28, 2:30 a.m., ICI Radio-Canada Télé
Steeve Gagnon, Content Coordinator, Employee Portal

Le journal de Bridget Jones (Bridget Jones’ Diary)
For me, the best scene of this movie is the close-up of Bridget’s behind (and underwear) as she slides down the fireman’s pole for her first report!

 Tuesday, December 30, 10:30 p.m., ICI Radio-Canada Télé
Marina Bost, Editor

Mr. Bean Holiday (Les Vacances de Mr. Bean)
Mr. Bean is not only a holiday tradition in our house, the kids love to watch anything with Mr. Bean all year long. Mr. Bean comes up frequently in conversation, in social situations, etc.  He’s now an honorary member of the family.

 January 1st, 8:00 p.m., CBC Television
Helene Breau-Cluney, Communications Officer


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10 Days Before Christmas – 10 Questions for Joanie Lavoie

joanieDo you know Joanie Lavoie? If you’re a social media user and enjoy ICI Radio-Canada Télé programming, you’ve probably dealt with her without knowing it. I asked this Radio-Canada social media strategy and community manager about her holiday rituals.

  1. What shows will you be sure not to miss on ICI Radio-Canada Télé during the holidays? Other than Les coulisses des Morissettes and the Enfants de la Télé family special, I’ll be watching Louis-José Houde : Le show caché 2 (8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 22 and Monday, Dec. 29), but also the companion documentary Louis-José Houde : Petit précis du comique (9 p.m. Monday, Dec. 29).
  1. And how about on ICI Radio-Canada Première radio? I’m looking forward to hearing the hosts who are filling in, like Pénélope McQuade on Medium large, my favourite show. Also, Isabelle Richer on 15-18 and Mathieu Dugal on PM. I love hearing new voices on the radio.   
  1. Describe a typical New Year’s Eve in your home. I’ll be with my family, quietly watching TV. It’s a tradition for us to watch the New Year’s Eve lineup together. The evening ends with the Bye Bye, and we never miss a second of that.
  1. What shows will you be watching in catchup mode? 30 vies, which I didn’t get to finish watching. I’ll also rewatch my favourite show of the year,Nouvelle adresse.
  1. For holiday recipes: Ricardo or Dany St-PierreHmm . . . that’s a tough call. Ricardo, because he’s been around forever, but I also love to be surprised by Dany St-Pierre.
  1. What’s your favourite holiday website? Ma résolution. It’s a site where you can choose your New Year’s resolution and watch NYE programming live. Very handy for people on the web.  
  1. Name a film that’s become a holiday tradition for you.   I like watching Le sapin a des boules every year. But there’s also Le miracle de la 34e rue. I’m almost embarrassed to say it, but I even have the DVD.
  1. What on-air host would you invite to your party? Édith Cochrane. She’d make everyone laugh and really get the party started.
  1. In 2014, what program made you: Laugh until you cried? Les enfants de la Télé   Cry, period? Nouvelle adresse is sad, yet beautiful.   Think? Nouvelle adresse. I can see my family in that show, it’s great.
  1. What are you looking forward to in January? The return of 19-2, no question about it.

Follow Joanie on Twitter @iciJoanie and @icirctele and on Facebook ICI Joanie Radio -Canada and ICI Radio-Canada Télé.

- Marie-Eve Desaulniers, Senior Advisor, Brand, Communications and Corporate Affairs

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Supporting local charities: Our 2014 holiday fundraising is underway

This holiday season, CBC/Radio-Canada is once again dedicating programming and volunteer efforts to fundraising and awareness-raising activities for our local communities. While fundraising events run from late November to early January, many Centres held open houses and special events last week to collect donations and raise funds for local food banks.

Across Quebec, Radio-Canada stations took part in the Grande guignolée des médias on December 4, collecting food and cash donations. Centres in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Nunavut also held special activities, including the Sounds of the Season events in Ontario; the Comfort and Joy campaign in support of Food Banks of Saskatchewan; and CBC Vancouver’s Open House and Food Bank Day. In Manitoba, CBC Radio One hosted Harvesting Hope, a special day of musical performances by local artists and inspiring stories of cheer, in support of Winnipeg Harvest. In Nunavut, CBC Iqaluit hosted a special charity show from the Quajuqtivik Soup Kitchen. Many of these activities showcase local talent, and provide an opportunity for residents to tour their local stations and meet CBC personalities, while raising awareness and funds for local charities.

Turkey Drives are being held throughout December in Edmonton, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador, with CBC Centres in those regions collecting monetary donations and frozen turkeys for their local food banks. In Quebec City, CBC is a partner in the Community Christmas Hamper Campaign, collaborating to distribute more than 200 Christmas hampers to families in need.

In each region, the public broadcaster is bringing communities together to celebrate the season and improve the lives of those in need. Learn more our regional holiday charity drives by visiting the CBC and Radio-Canada websites, and join us in this season of giving.

-Melanie Miles, Writer/Editor, Corporate Communications

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What’s better than music to help us celebrate the holidays?

No matter where, how or with whom you celebrate the holidays, music helps kick-off these festivities and it brings us closer together. Once again this year, we invite you to make CBC/Radio-Canada part of your holiday celebrations.

- Marie-Eve Desaulniers, Senior Advisor, Brand, Communications and Corporate Affairs

card image

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Dominique Chaloult appointed executive director of Radio-Canada’s main TV network

d-chaloult-348x230I’m pleased to announce that Dominique Chaloult will be returning to Radio-Canada on January 6, 2015, to become the new executive director of French Television.

Dominique is currently executive director of programming at Télé-Québec, where she successfully breathed new life into the Quebec pubcaster’s lineup despite challenging financial circumstances. She redesigned the Télé-Québec schedule to deliver a wide range of distinctive programming. Titles such as Les Bobos, Deux hommes en or, Un chef à la cabane, SNL Québec, 125, Marie-Anne and the documentary Nation – Huis clos avec Lucien Bouchard are just a few examples of this renewal.

Over her career, Dominique has gained extensive experience in TV production while working for such companies as Zone 3. Her knowledge of Radio-Canada, where she was director of arts and variety programming for five years, is also a valuable asset for us.

Dominique is thrilled to take up this challenge with us. I’m confident that she’ll bring this same enthusiasm to her new role, so that we continue to provide compelling, diverse public-service programming, with drama, variety and youth content that allows our audiences to see their lives and interests reflected. Please join me in congratulating Dominique and giving her a warm welcome back.

- Louis Lalande, Executive Vice-President,  French Services

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CBC/Radio-Canada wins award from The Learning Partnership

kidworks-awds-348x230CBC/Radio-Canada is a recipient of The Learning Partnership’s 2014 Canada’s Outstanding Employer Award.

CBC/Radio-Canada is one of 10 companies selected for this honour from out of 75,000 employers across Canada who invited Grade 9 students into their workplaces for Take Our Kids to Work day.

It’s also the fourth consecutive year for CBC to receive this recognition. CBC Maritimes won the award in 2011 and 2012.

“Despite it being a challenging year at CBC/Radio-Canada, we were delighted to continue offering Grade 9s an opportunity to begin planning their future career path,” says Todd Spencer, executive director, People and Culture, CBC. “We are proud to be recognized, once again, by the The Learning Partnership for our continued involvement with them, and in showcasing our innovative services, programs and content for young people.”

CBC/Radio-Canada is recognized for ongoing support and dedication to education, internships and in particular, Take Our Kids to Work day activities. Employees brought their kids to work in CBC/Radio-Canada locations in Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa, Toronto and Halifax, along with unofficial activities elsewhere across the country.

- David Oille, Senior Advisor, Strategic Communications, Corporate Communications

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Saskatchewan gets their tweet on with CBC

keithEver wonder who it is that follows you on Twitter? Earlier this month, CBC Saskatchewan hosted #CBCTweetUp with the hopes of meeting members of their Twitter community in person and getting to know them better. Over 100 tweeps from Regina’s arts, business, entrepreneurship, politics and community groups visited CBC Regina for a tour behind the scenes at CBC Radio and CBC-TV, to meet the on-air team, enjoy live music, win at CBC bingo and some other fun surprises  Keith Andrade was one of these Tweeple who participated in the event and was generous enough to share some of his feedback with us.

What did you get out of the event? Just how down to earth everyone was. I got to chill with morning show host Sheila Coles for a bit that night and even though she had to be up uber early to hit the airwaves, she was stoked to talk and show love to fans. That was the theme for the whole night! Supper hour host Jill Morgan is super cool. Communications Manager Kerry Fraser? So dope! I even ran into producer Chris Lane aka “The Man” and was really stoked on how approachable these folks were!

Was it worthwhile attending? The best part of any tweetup is the people who attend and this tweetup was just super dope. CBC did an amazing job giving us a most excellent environment to chill and share a laugh. I really hope they do another one in the future. Oh, and there were sweet buttons for all of us to sport and show CBC some love on the streets. This was just a great time.


A big thank you to everyone who participated in the event and a congratulations to the team for organizing a terrific event. Have you ever attended a Tweetup? Share your thoughts and photos with us!

-Sarah Lue, Social Media Advisor, Corporate Communications

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