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MRU Reads - a virtual book club

A partnership between MRU Office of Alumni Relations and the MRU Library.

The book club experience…from the comfort of your own home. MRU Reads is a virtual book club that is open to all members of the MRU community - alumni, students, employees.

Book club meetings will be held in February, May, August, and November via Zoom. A moderated forum will open two weeks prior to each meeting to allow book club members to share their insights and engage in lively discussion.

Will Ferguson joins us live on November 26th.

We’re thrilled to announce that local author and MRU honorary degree recipient, Will Ferguson, will join us on November 26th as we discuss his latest book, The Finder. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in a Q & A with Will.

Interested in joining MRU Reads?

  1. Simply sign up here and you’ll be sent an email to activate your account
  2. Join the online discussion forum starting on November 12
  3. Order your copy of the book today

Our November 2020 Pick!

The Finder

From the Scotiabank Giller Prize–winning novelist of 419 comes a spellbinding literary adventure novel about precious objects lost and found.

The world is filled with wonders, lost objects—all real—all still out there, waiting to be found:

· the missing Fabergé eggs of the Romanov dynasty, worth millions
· the last reel of Alfred Hitchcock’s first film
· Buddy Holly’s iconic glasses
· Muhammad Ali’s Olympic gold medal

How can such cherished objects simply vanish? Where are they hiding? And who on earth might be compelled to uncover them?

Will Ferguson takes readers on a heroic, imaginative journey across continents, from the seas of southern Japan, to the arid Australian Outback, to the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, after the earthquake. Prepare to meet Gaddy Rhodes, a brittle Interpol agent obsessed with tracking “The Finder”—a shadowy figure she believes is collecting lost objects; Thomas Rafferty, a burnt-out travel writer whose path crosses that of The Finder, to devastating effect; and Tamsin Greene, a swaggering war photographer who is hiding secrets of her own.

The Finder is a beguiling and wildly original tale about the people, places, and things that are lost and found in our world. Both an epic literary adventure and an escape into a darkly thrilling world of deceit and its rewards, this novel asks: How far would you be willing to go to recover the things you’ve left behind?

Join the conversation!

The first discussion point for The Finder to be posted here on November 12, 2020. Join us in sharing your thoughts and insights on the book.

Meet the Author

About the Author

Will Ferguson is an award-winning travel writer and novelist.

Fort Vermilion (pop. 728), in northern Canada, closer to the Arctic Circle than the American border.

His debut novel, Happiness, sold into 23 languages around the world. His last novel, 419, won the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His new novel, The Finder, was released in Sept 2020.

Ferguson has won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour three times and has been nominated for both the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and a Commonwealth Writers’ Prize.

In his early twenties, he lived and worked in Ecuador, South America, as part of Canada World Youth (similar to the American Peace Corps). 

Will Ferguson studied film production and screenwriting at York University, graduating with a B.F.A. in 1990.

He joined the Japan Exchange Teachers Programme (JET) after university and spent five years in Asia, travelling through China, Korea, Indonesia and Malaysia. He married his wife Terumi in Kumamoto, Japan. They now live in Calgary, Canada, with their two sons.

His travel memoirs include: 

  • Hitchhiking across Japan in Hokkaido Highway Blues (later re-titled Hitching Rides with Buddha)
  • A 500-mile hike across Northern Ireland in Beyond Belfast
  • Travels in Canada in Beauty Tips from Moose Jaw
  • A journey through central Africa in Road Trip Rwanda which was nominated for the Charles Taylor Prize

In 2010, he was the head writer for the Vancouver Winter Olympics Closing Ceremonies, penning material for the likes of William Shatner and Michael J. Fox.

Ferguson has written for the New York Times, Esquire UK, Flare, Zoomer, the Globe & Mail, National Post and Canadian Geographic. 

He sits on the board of The Chawkers Foundation, and in 2016 received an honorary degree in English from Mount Royal University.


Book Club Co-Hosts

Courtney Montgomery is the outreach lead, public services at Mount Royal University Library. Courtney graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts - Dramatic Arts from the University of Lethbridge and later pursued her Event Management Certificate at Mount Royal University. Her passion to connect with people and her affinity for organization are well-paired in her current position. When Courtney is not working she enjoys skiing, golf, baking, walks with her dog, live music (pre & post COVID-19), and curling up with a good book. Her reading preferences include personal development, memoirs, classic novels, and popular fiction; she's always open to great recommendations.


Michaela Ritchie is an MRU alumna who graduated in 2018 with a Bachelor's Degree in  Communications - Journalism. She is an author, poet and recovering journalist from Calgary, Alberta. Currently working as the Calgary Public Library's social media and digital content specialist, Ritchie is also a prose editor for FreeFall Magazine and sits on the board of the FreeFall Literary Society. Her words can be found in past issues of Where Magazine, Essential Magazine, Tourism Calgary, the Calgary Journal, and many decrepit notebooks. Say hello to her online at @wordsbyritchie.

Getting Your Book

Please note, participants will be responsible for securing their own books.

The Office of Alumni Relations has partnered with The Next Page (a Calgary-based, alumni-owned bookstore) as our book supplier of choice. For every MRU Reads book sale made through The Next Page, 15% of sales proceeds will be donated to the Mount Royal University True Blue Alumni Scholarship.

We're pleased to announce that The Next Page has several copies of The Finder signed by Will Ferguson, available for sale on a first-come, first-served basis.

To order online, please visit their website and click 'browse' at the top right corner and you will be redirected to their online store. At checkout you will be prompted to create an account. Use promo code "MRUREADS2020" when placing your order online or in-person to activate The Next Page's donation to the scholarship fund. Note, The Next Page ships for free within the Calgary city limits.