Back Page Books Nanaimo

Richard Simpson and Ashley Grose

Richard Simpson and Ashley Grose

Nanaimo’s newest bookstore is Back Page Books, #5 – 321 Wesley Street, in Heritage Mews near Lobelia’s Lair in Nanaimo’s Old City Quarter. This cozy little bookshop sells both new and used books. There’s a great selection of classics, poetry, adult fiction, environmental, native studies, Russian literature, Canadiana, local authors, political/economy, philosophy, current affairs, and children’s literature.

Co-owners Ashley Grose and Richard Simpson met while working together at Panago. Both are avid readers who always has a dream of opening a bookstore. During a three-month backpacking trip around South America they fell in love with the artistic culture of the region, inluding its wealth of bookstores, cafes, and art galleries. There was one bookstore in Santiago, Chile, that gave them the idea of mixing new and used books. That store was busy all the time and always had some event going on which really inspired them to want to create that type of atmosphere at home. So after doing some research, they opened Back Page Books on December 5, 2009.

Ashley and Richard have plans for regular author readings and other literary events. On December 10, 2009, Nanaimo author Don LePan read from his new novel Animals to an enthusiastic crowd. They’re hoping to have at least one author talk a month, to create a community around literacy. And judging by the reaction of those at the LePan reading last week, they’ve found their niche.

During the holidays Back Page Books will be open Monday to Thursday from 9 am to 7 pm, Friday and Saturday 9 am to 9 pm, Sunday 11 am to 5 pm. For more information call 250-591-1414.

roberta says: December 18, 2009 at 11:14 am

This is a wonderful cozy bookstore, I couldn’t believe the selection of books there are many I have not seen elsewhere. I encourage everyone to check it out and meet the owners who welcome you with warmth which is obvious as soon as you enter through the door.

Kim Goldberg says: December 16, 2009 at 6:15 pm

Great bookstore, and a great write-up about the couple running it! Here’s hoping their new endeavor does well!