Best political books
A day before Canada Day, Samara has launched an effort to get people naming their favourite Canadian political books. I applaud this initiative and not just because I've dabbled in the political-book-writing business myself.
Canada simply does not have a healthy political-book industry -- it pales in comparison to the U.S. or Britain and it's far too weighted toward biography, in my opinion. Several years ago, when I sat as a judge on the panel of the Shaughnessy Cohen prize, I was flabbergasted by what publishers were submitting as "political books." I'd say about three quarters of the submissions had nothing to do with politics whatsoever.
Anyway, I heartily encourage folks to go to the Samara page and send in your submissions. I've put my list below and I already know two I wish I'd added: Not Without Cause by Georgette Gagnon and Dan Rath, as well as Untitled: Stephen Harper's hockey book. (I know, I know, it's not published yet, but do you know any other unfinished work that's received more press?)
Here's the list I sent to Samara:
One-Eyed Kings by Ron Graham (beautiful, beautiful writing)
Harper's Team, by Tom Flanagan (important insights, should be on everyone's desk while Harper's in power)
Brian Mulroney by Brian Mulroney (best prime ministerial memoirs ever)
The National Deal, by Robert Sheppard and Michael Valpy
Spin Wars by Bill Fox
Reign of Error by Greg Weston
Playing for Keeps, by Graham Fraser
Mark my Words, by Marjorie Nichols/Jane O'Hara
The Dark Side or The Life, by Steve Paikin
The Secret Mulroney Tapes, by Peter C. Newman