Independent bookstores – like Quesnel’s Books & Company – are a fundamental part of Canadian culture, providing enriching experiences for the book-buying public.
Indie bookstores are also pillars of their communities, with staff who are actively involved in the neighbourhood, providing an inclusive space where people can connect over shared interests.
In support of this, Heritage House Publishing has partnered with 10 independent bookstores in B.C. for a ‘read local’ campaign, emphasizing local stories and Indigenous authors published by Heritage House.
“Heritage House recognizes the importance of independent book stores in B.C. and across the country,” says Rodger Touchie, the publisher of Heritage House.
Playing a vital role in the Canadian literary landscape, local booksellers champion Canadian creators and introduce readers to a diverse range of voices from across the country’s rich cultural environment.
“To celebrate that, we developed this special campaign to highlight regional stories and Indigenous voices,” Touchie says.
Here in Quesnel, Books & Company is participating from April 1 to 30, which includes B.C. Book Day on April 17 and Canadian Independent Bookstore Day on April 29.
At Books & Company, some of the featured Indigenous books include:
- Aggie and Mudgy: The Journey of Two Kaska Dena Children by Wendy Proverbs, winner of the Jeanne Clarke Local History Award in 2022.
- White Raven by Teoni Spathelfer, illustrator Natassia Davies. The second book in the Little Wolf series, shortlisted for the 2022 Indigenous Voices Award and nominated for the 2022 Victoria Book Prizes.
- Picture book Magical Beings of Haida Gwaii by Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson and Sara Florence Davidson. Matching Magical Beings of Haida Gwaii Colouring and Activity Book, providing young readers the opportunity to learn about Haida culture.
Regional books include:
- Adventure Roads of B.C.’s Northwest Heartland by Liz Bryan, a photo-rich travelogue, winner of this year’s Jeanne Clark Local History Award.
- From Denmark to the Cariboo: The Epic Journey of the Lindhardt Sisters by Linda Peterat, the intriguing, true story of three adventurous Danish sisters during the late 1800s gold rush.
- Children of the Kootenays by Shirley Stainton, with help from her granddaughter, Kristi Kirkelie
- Wagon Road North: The Saga of the Cariboo Gold Rush, by Art Downs, a newly revised and expanded edition of Heritage House’s first published book, originally released in 1960. One of the bestselling books of its time, nominated for the 2022 Jeanne Clarke Local History Award.
These and other captivating books featured will be prominently displayed at Books & Company during the campaign period.
Family owned and operated, Books & Company has been the home of all things local in the region, in Prince George for more than 25 years, and in Quesnel since 2015.
“We love supporting the community that has been so good to us for all these years,” says owner Owen Lubbers, who also describes himself as signatory, director and president, head of maintenance, occasional janitor, music promoter, buyer, scout, bookkeeper (both literally & figuratively,) and bookseller, specializing in the procurement and expedition of all things books.