sunflowers 2 mass

Almost every Saturday in the summer I visit my friend Jenny Spring’s

garden.  Jenny grows incredible flowers and vegetables on a sunny backyard

plot in the heart of Victoria.  Right now her sunflowers are in their prime.

Growing up in Manitoba I ate a ton of sunflower seeds and have an innate

fondness for these flowers!   While checking West Coast seeds website I found out

sunflowers earned their name due to a process called heliotropism.

During the budding stage of growth, the heads of nearly all sunflowers face east

at dawn and follow the sun throughout the day, facing west at dusk.

.sunflowers 1





Guess what I did this weekend! Watching fireworks ON A BOAT!

Just like this:

Except with less T-Pain, sadly.


Happy Friday!

I would like to introduce you to our new Ampersand

account manager, Dani Farmer.  She will be taking

over my territory when I retire on August 12.  I have

to say, I think everyone will be in good hands.  Already

I almost wish I could stay on so I could work with her.

Please welcome Dani!


Have a great weekend,


Dani Farmer

Hello friends!

We are getting ready for the Toronto Gift Fair and our office is looking a little rough:


It’s okay though, the atmosphere gets us pumped up and rearing to go for a week of

intense selling on our feet!  Contact your rep to hear about the specials that we have

on for the show. Make sure to come out and visit us!

showbanner 2015

- Tamara

This weekend was the 38th annual Vancouver Folk Music Festival, so I was down

at Jericho Beach Park ALL weekend, eating whale’s tails, listening to excellent music,

and trying not to get sunburned too badly. I hope you all managed to spend the

weekend somewhere half as beautiful!


Happy Friday!

There has been a book on my to-be-read pile for

quite some time now and I finally got around to

reading it.  It is called “The Girl Who Could Fly” by

Victoria Forester.  It was a New York Times bestseller

and got rave reviews when it first came out.

I guess I read it because the sequel is coming out this fall

and the cover of it intrigued me.

The book itself turned out to be a fantastic read.

A home-schooled prairie girl, Piper McCloud,

has the ability to fly.  Her parents try to keep that talent

hidden and forbid her to fly but eventually some folks

see her unusual ability.  Shortly thereafter, a woman appears

(in an interesting and very showy way) and offers to take

Piper away to a school for children with amazing talents or

powers.  Piper and her parents agree and off she goes.

It turns out that the school is there not to encourage these children

(not to mention other flora and fauna) but to make every

thing and everyone conform to the norm.

The story goes on to tell how Piper and her schoolmates

figure things out and mount an escape.  The story celebrates

everyone’s right to be unique.  It is well told, gripping and will

even bring a tear or two to your eye.  I can highly recommend it

and I think the new cover treatment for it will make even more

people want to pick it up and read it. By the way the sequel is called

“The Boy Who Knew Everythng” and it is coming in October.

I’m halfway through and I think you’ll like it too.

Have a great weekend!


The Girl Who Could Fly

The Girl Who Could Fly
by Forester, Victoria (10/27/15)
9781250072467  $8.99 PB

Feiwel and Friends/RAI

The Boy Who Knew Everything

The Boy Who Knew Everything
by Forester, Victoria (10/27/15)
9780312626006  $19.50 Hardcover

Feiwel & Friends / RAI


Hi guys!

It’s PanAm Game time in Toronto and through all of the HOV lane fury there is actually an

amazing full party going on in the city. Free concerts, food trucks, the circus, and oh yeah,

awesome sports that we are winning all over the place!

We are lucky to have content from one of our books featured in a documentary airing on Sportsnet:


Playing it Forward: 50 Years of Women and Sport in Canada
Second Story Press

Make sure to watch out for it while checking out the games!

- Tamara

I’m in Halifax and the weather is GLORIOUS! Also, you know: bookfair, awesome booksellers, and lobster!


Happy Friday!

I don’t know if you’ve heard but the news is out.  I will

be retiring (early I might add) in August and will be

moving to Mexico with my husband at the end of

September.  I have mixed feelings about it – part

of me is thrilled to be able to not work after so long

but the other part of me will be saddened to miss my

book people.  The people make this business and it

has been my privilege to work with some fantastic

folks and it is them I will be sorry not to see on a

regular basis.  You know who you are and the

welcome mat is out with your name(s) on it!

I’m not done yet so there will be a few more

posts before I bow out.  Just as a teaser -

here’s where I’ll be headed:


Have a great weekend!


Hello friends!

I have been wanting to read Erika Swyler’s The Book of Speculation:


About a month ago I went on a beach vacation and had asked a coworker if this would be a good

beach read. She said something very wise to me, “Uh, well it’s about women drowning in the sea.

So…no.” I took my wise coworker’s advice and waited until now to read it – with my feet firmly

planted on the concrete of the city.

Strangely, I ended up reading it on the countdown to my birthday, which is even creepier than

reading it by the ocean as the story follows a countdown to the protagonist’s sister’s birthday -

a birthday that is suspected to lead to her death. So that was kind of weird.

Other than that creepiness, I loved it! I remember a drama teacher telling me once that if something

leaves you wanting more, it’s a good thing. I wanted more. I didn’t want to leave the crumbling world

of the young librarian Simon Watson or his tarot card reading sister. I wanted to keep delving deeper

into their traveling circus past and see what other mysterious things would be revealed. I put the book

down and felt that I wasn’t ready to say good bye. That’s a good thing.

Check out some more opinions from other Ampersander’s here!

- Tamara


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