The Next Chapter

Books on Beechwood's Hilary Porter on the books that are popular in her Ottawa store

The indie bookstore has specialized in political and history books since 1994.
Books on Beechwood in an independent bookstore based in Ottawa. (Submitted by Books on Beechwood)

This interview originally aired on March 28, 2020.

Hilary Porter is the manager of Books on Beechwood, an independent bookstore based in Ottawa. The store has been around for more than 25 years and carries various genres but specializes in political and history books.

Porter told The Next Chapter about what books are popular in her store.

Not Mentioned in Dispatches by RHOMA 

Not Mentioned in Dispatches is a nonfiction book featuring anecdotes with former Canadian diplomats. (Retired Heads of Mission Association (Rhoma) Publications)

"The subtitle for this book reads: 'More excerpts from the personal notebooks of former Canadian diplomats.' It's a bit of a behind-the-scenes look at what life is like as a foreign diplomat. 

"It has some funny vignettes, some touching ones and neat stories that you wouldn't otherwise hear about some of our foreign ambassadors." 

The Dutch House by Ann Patchett ​​​​​​

The Dutch House is a novel by Ann Patchett. (HarperCollins, Heidi Ross)

"We get a lot of customers who come into the store and they don't know what it is they're looking for. But if they want a good book, we often reach for this one.

It's a story about family, betrayal, love and ultimately forgiveness.

"It's set just after the Second World War and it travels forward about five decades. It's a family saga centred around two siblings and the ups and downs in their lives. It's a story about family, betrayal, love and ultimately forgiveness. It's a lovely read."

Truth Be Told by Beverley McLachlin 

Truth Be Told is a memoir by Beverley McLachlin. (Jean-Marc Carisse, Simon & Schuster)

"It's the story of her life from childhood through to when she was named the first woman chief justice of the Supreme Court of Canada. 

People are fascinated by Beverley's life and everything she's overcome over the years.

"People are fascinated by Beverley's life and everything she's overcome over the years. She's also a local author — so she'll pop in every now and then to sign books for us. 

Hilary Porter's comments have been edited for length and clarity. 

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