Cheering for Gaspereau Press

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From where I sit here in my office, looking south and west, I can almost see Gasperau Press.  I can, at least, see the town here in the Annapolis Valley where it is located, and in my mind’s eye can see the modest blue cube of a building, with the typographic lower-case “g” sign that marks its quiet presence in Kentville.

Suddenly, this small, craft-proud press is in the national newspapers, with recent articles in the Globe and Mail pouting about how long people will have to wait to have their Giller-award winning novel in hand. But oh! when they have it, they will have not only a prize-winning novel, but a book that is lovely to hold, beautifully typeset on fine paper, with all the elements from cover design to page size tailored to that particular book. And maybe, once they have held such a book, they will realize that truly discriminating readers (as surely Giller-award winners think themselves to be), they should also be lovers of books-as-things.

This moment marks a particularly critical intersection in the history of the book. If Gaspereau Press holds firm, as I hope they will, we can reconsider what is involved in our love for books. When we want a quick read or an instant gratification purchase, we can download the words, stripped of physical context, into our e-readers. When we want to hold a book that pleases our eyes and our hands and adds sensory pleasure to the intellectual and imaginative pleasures of reading, we can support such presses as Gaspereau Press.

Press on, Gary and Andrew!  The world has need of you now.

Maxine

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