Simcoe Reads

6 Libraries. 6 Books. 1 Winner.

Simcoe Reads logoSelect Simcoe County libraries will square off again this summer for a host of great reads in 2024. Barrie, Essa, Innisfil, Midland, New Tecumseth, and Ramara will all join in on the fun! 

Simcoe Reads will launch on July 2nd - Stay tuned for announcements on this year's books and the champions from each city or town that will represent these amazing selections!


Simcoe Reads 2024

Champions and Books

Simcoe Reads 2024 is once again upon us. With 6 amazing Simcoe County Libraries participating this year, the selection of books and champion representation is second to none!

For more information on each library's champions and the books they will be representing, see below:

Barrie Public Library

Picture of Amy CouserCover of book has red background with large black printed title and an image of a butler’s arm holding a tray


  Champion: Amy Courser

  Book: Mindful of Murder

  Author: Susan Juby



About Amy:

Amy is a City of Barrie Councillor and member of the Barrie Public Library Board of Directors.

About the Book:

Mindful of Murder takes us on a journey with 3 butlers, 4 guests and a week to remember as family descend on the Yatra Institute, a spiritual retreat on Sutil Island. The goal? To fulfill the last wishes of its owner and determine who is the most suitable heir. But did the owner die of natural causes or is there something more sinister at play?

Essa Public Library 

Picture of Stephanie CryerCover of book


  Champion: Stephanie Cryer

  Book: And Then She Fell

  Author: Alicia Elliot




About Stephanie:

Stephanie is a teacher-librarian in New Tecumseth.

About the Book:

And Then She Fell follows Alice, a young Haudenosaunee mother who goes through a kind of looking glass, as she deals with postpartum depression and married life away from her family and traditions. It’s a story of difficult truths, told with humour, horror and a bit of surrealism.

Innisfil ideaLab & Library

Picture of Barbara LoveCover of book has blue background with shapes of blueberries and the title in yellow print



 Champion: Barbara Love

  Book: The Berry Pickers

  Author: Amanda Peters





About Barbara:

Barbara Love is a proud Innisfilian, mother of three and grandmother of five. She is a retired nurse, a retired Professor from McMaster University in the School of Nursing, and recently served on the RVH Board of Directors for ten years. She has published and given national and international presentations in the areas of paediatric oncology, standards of care, resilience, hope, and competency.

About the Book:

The Berry Pickers is a captivating novel about a young Mi’kmaq girl’s disappearance and the trauma, search for truth, and unwavering love that results from this mysterious circumstance.

Midland Public Library

Picture of Kevin CascagnetteCover of book has moon setting in a grey sky


  Champion: Kevin Cascagnette

  Book: Moon of the Turning Leaves

  Author: Waubgeshig Rice




About Kevin:

Kevin is a versatile professional in the creative industry, hailing from Midland, Ontario. With expertise in graphic design, art direction, and photography, Kevin brings a fresh perspective to his projects. He has a successful photography business and is dedicated to community service. As a proud Indigenous individual, Kevin adds a unique viewpoint as he represents Moon of The Turning Leaves by Waubgeshig Rice.

About the Book:

In Moon of the Turning Leaves we are reunited with Evan Whitesky and his community in northern Canada, who he has led off the reservation following a mysterious permanent blackout and subsequent anarchy. As the community revives their Anishinaabe traditions, this is a story of endurance, strength, Indigenous identity, and rebirth.

New Tecumseh Public Library

Picture of Cass SiglerCover of book has poppies in the background, a female figure in front the the title in white print


  Champion: Cass Sigler

  Book: Into the Bright Open

  Author: Cherie Dimaline





About Cass:

Cass Sigler is a non-binary and queer hairstylist who has lived, worked and volunteered in Alliston since 2012, and been a small business owner since September 2019. Cass is passionate about creating safer spaces and providing more accessible hair services to marginalized communities, specifically the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. In their free time, you can find them reading, gaming or creating.

About the Book:

Into the Bright Open by Cherie Dimaline, is a queer reimagining of The Secret Garden, where an orphaned girl is sent to live in the Georgian Bay wilds and discovers family secrets both wonderful and horrifying. 

Ramara Public Library

Picture of Sherry LawsonCover of book has a white background representing birchbark with bead work on top


  Champion: Sherry Lawson

  Book: The Strangers

  Author: Katherena Vermette





About Sherry:

Sherry never meant to ever be an author. Turning fifty convinced her to leave a record for her children and grandchildren. Sherry’s stories take us through a chaotic childhood and instances as a young adult of outright racism. There are tears and laughter, just like in real life.

About the Book:

The Strangers is a staggering intergenerational saga that explores how connected we are, even when we’re no longer together—even when we’re forced apart.

Upcoming Events

Visit our Event Calendar throughout the summer to access links to these Simcoe Reads programs

Date Time Location Event
August 27 6:30-7:30pm Online - Register here Author Talk - Katherena Vermette The Strangers
September 19* 6:00pm  In-Person Author Talk - Waubgeshine Rice Moon of the Turning Leaves
September 26 7:00-8:00pm Online - Register here Author Talk - Susan Juby Mindful of Murder
October 24* 6:30-8:30pm Udney Community Centre (in-person only) Simcoe Reads Grand Finale
* Registration details coming soon

Simcoe Reads 2023

Champions and Books

 Innisfil IdeaLab & Library - Winner of Simcoe Reads 2023

Raj GroverBook cover with dark blue background and turquoise depiction of the end of a violin


  Champion: Raj Grover

  Book: On the Ravine

  By: Vincent Lam


Barrie Public Library

Shakir BarmareBook Cover for How to Calm Your Mind by Chris Bailey


  Champion: Shakir Barmare

  Book: How to Calm Your Mind - Finding Presence and Productivity in Anxious Times

  By: Chris Bailey


Bradford West-Gwillimbury Public Library

Amy KiezebrinkBook Cover: Scarborough by Catherine Hernandez


  Champion: Jen Turner

  Book: Scarborough

  By: Catherine Hernandez


 Essa Public Library

Amy KiezebrinkBook Cover: The Maid by Nita Prose


  Champion: Amy Kiezebrink

  Book: The Maid

  By: Nita Prose 


 Midland Public Library

Roberta Douglasbook cover image of breast cancer after the diagnosis by jane pritchard


  Champion: Roberta Douglas

  Book: Breast Cancer: After the Diagnosis

  By: Jane Pritchard 


New Tecumseh Public Library

Melissa MedagliaBook Cover for Women Talking: A Novel by Miriam Toews


Champion: Melissa Medaglia

  Book: Women Talking

  By: Miriam Toews


Ramara Public library

Jane Ste. MarieBook Cover: A World of Curiosities by Louise Penny


  Champion: Jane Ste. Marie

  Book: A World of Curiosities

  By: Louise Penny


Simcoe Reads 2022

Champions and Books

Essa Public Library - Winner of Simcoe Reads 2022


  Champion: Krista White

  Book: Washington Black

  By: Esi Edugyan



Barrie Public Library


  Champion: Claudine Cousins

  Book: Can You Hear Me Now? 

  By: Celina Caesar-Chavannes 



Bradford West Gwillimbury Public Library 


  Champion: Meade Helman 

  Book: Hench 

  By: Natalie Zina Walschots 



Innisfil ideaLAB & Library


  Champion: Jeanette Luchese

  Book: Not on My Watch 

  By: Alexandra Morton 




Midland Public Library 


  Champion: Susanne Marchand

  Book: The Last High 

  By: Daniel Kalla 




 New Tecumseth Public Library 


  Champion: Shira Harrison

  Book: What Strange Paradise 

  By: Omar El Akkad




Ramara Public Library 

  Champion: Dorothy MacDonald

  Book: The Forgotten Home Child 

  By: Genevieve Graham



Simcoe Reads 2022 - Grand Finale Video (click picture to watch)

 picture of video for simcoe reads grand finale 2022

Simcoe Reads 2022 - Grand Finale Video (click picture to watch)

picture of video for simcoe reads grand finale 2022


Simcoe Reads 2021

Champions and Books

Essa Public Library - Winner of Simcoe Reads 2021


  Champion: Grace Baker

  Book: Gutter Child 

  By: Jael Richardson  


Barrie Public Library

  Champion: Carolina Belmares

  Book: A Mind Spread Out On the Ground 

  By: Alicia Elliott 


Bradford West Gwillimbury Public Library


  Champion: Emily Dahlgren

  Book: Ayesha at Last 

  By: Uzma Jalaluddin  


Innisfil ideaLAB & Library


  Champion: Anne Smith

  Book: The Company We Keep 

  By: Frances Itani 


Midland Public Library


  Champion: Cady McLaughlin

  Book: The Centaur’s Wife 

  By: Amanda Leduc


New Tecumseth Public Library


  Champion: Judy Penz Sheluk

  Book: Greenwood 

  By: Michael Christie


Ramara Public Library


  Champion: Linda Lyons

  Book: Indians on Vacation 

  By: Thomas King



Simcoe Reads 2021 - Grand Finale Video (click picture to watch)

Simcoe Reads 2020

Champions and Books

Barrie Public Library - Winner of Judge's Choice Award


  Champion: Lisa Morgan

  Book: An Ocean of Minutes

  By: Thea Lim


Bradford West Gwillimbury Public Library


  Champion: Noora Akhavan

  Book: Empire of Wild

  By: Cherie Dimaline


 Essa Public Library - Winner of Community Choice Award


  Champion: Emily Wood

  Book: The Saturday Night Ghost Club

  By: Craig Davidson


Innisfil ideaLAB & Library 

  Champion: Lynn Dollin

  Book: Moon of the Crusted Snow

  By: Waubgeshig Rice


Midland Public Library 

  Champion: Kristi Presse

  Book: From the Ashes

 By: Jesse Thistle




2020 Grand Finale