Vancouver 125 Legacy Books Collection Announced

The Association of Book Publishers of BC and the Office of Vancouver's Poet Laureate Brad Cran recently announced the reemergence of ten classic Vancouver books to be republished as part of the Vancouver 125 celebrations.

BC’s publishers in partnership with the City of Vancouver, which has provided a subsidy to help bring these lost gems back into print, will reissue 4 non-fiction, 4 fiction and 2 poetry titles to celebrate Vancouver’s 125th anniversary.

“These books are a testament to the depth of Vancouver’s literary history and the vibrant writing community that now thrives in our city,” says Brad Cran. ”They represent a love of the written word and show absolute esteem for the oral histories that define us as a city. To read these books is to understand Vancouver and how we have become a city of great literature.”

The ten books include Daphne Marlatt and Carole Itter's Opening Doors, a classic oral history that was originally published as part of the Provincial Archives Sound Heritage series; Truman Green's A Credit to Your Race, a self-published and startling novel about racial prejudice in British Columbia; Bertrand W. Sinclair's The Inverted Pyramid, a lost classic from 1924 that indicts Vancouver’s nascent business sector providing insights into the foundation of our city; and Edward Starkins’ Who Killed Janet Smith?, which explores Vancouver's most notorious unsolved murder mystery. Also scheduled for reprint are classics of 1970s fiction, D. M. Fraser's Class Warfare and Betty Lambert's Crossings, and two works from great Vancouver poets Dorothy Livesay and Jon Furberg.

Margaret Reynolds, Executive Director of the Association of Book Publishers of BC, is delighted to see such a range of titles in the collection representing the work of our men and women and reflecting the lives of our many immigrant populations and First Nations people. “Our publishers have stepped up to the plate to ensure our literary and social history remains available to the public,” she states. “All involved in this project have done a remarkable job highlighting works from the early days of Vancouver and the importance of the ‘70s in our literary heritage. It is our hope that the Vancouver 125 Legacy Books Collection will promote a renewed interest in our social and literary history.”

The books in the Collection were selected from submissions from publishers and suggestions from an advisory committee. The Vancouver 125 Legacy Books Collection will be launched in the fall of 2011. Books that will form the collection are:


A Hard Man to Beat by Howie White, Harbour Publishing. 

Along the No. 20 Line: Reminiscences of the Vancouver Waterfront by Rolf Knight, New Star Books

Opening Doors: Vancouver’s East End edited by Daphne Marlatt and Carole Itter, Harbour Publishing

Who Killed Janet Smith? By Edward Starkins, Anvil Press


Class Warfare by D. M. Fraser, Arsenal Pulp Press

A Credit to Your Race by Truman Green, Anvil Press

Crossings by Betty Lambert, Arsenal Pulp Press

The Inverted Pyramid by Bertrand W. Sinclair, Ronsdale Press



Day and Night by Dorothy Livesay, Oolichan Books

Anhaga by Jon Furberg, Smoking Lung/Arsenal Pulp Press


For information on the Vancouver 125 Legacy Books Project contact Brad Cran Poet Laureate at 604-872-7263 or Margaret Reynolds, Executive Director, ABPBC 604-684-0228.


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