In many ways fall is the beginning of a new year. Students head back to
school, (at least in most provinces,) and in the book business we eagerly
await the fall releases while getting ready for the winter season. This fall marks a new beginning
for Munro’s Books in Victoria as founder Jim Munro retired September 1st. Jim gave me
my first job in the book business. I worked in the original location, a much smaller store with a
more bohemian atmosphere – one which very much suited the late 70’s. Since that time I have spent
many hours at Munro’s as a sales rep and publicist while shepherding around authors such as
Farley Mowat, Alice Munro, Margaret Atwood, Jean Chretien, David Suzuki and of course
Allan Fotheringham who deemed Munro’s “the most magnificent bookstore in Canada.” That was
after they moved from the bohemian location and renovated an old bank! Jim gave a lot of people their
start and welcomed innumerable authors and customers into his store over his 51 years as a bookseller.
To ensure that tradition continues he has passed the store on to four long-time
employees: Jessica Walker, Carol Mentha, Ian Cochrane and Sarah Fry. It’s both a happy
ending and new chapter for us all.