Little Sister's Book and Art Emporium

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The shop's main entrance

Little Sister's Book and Art Emporium, also known as Little Sister's Bookstore, but usually called "Little Sister's," is an independent bookstore in the Davie Village / West End of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, a predominantly gay community. The bookstore was opened in 1983 by Jim Deva and Bruce Smythe, and its current manager is Janine Fuller.[1]

The bookstore is famous for being embroiled in a legal battle with the Canada Border Services Agency over the importation of what the agency has labeled "obscene materials".[2] These materials, nearly all dealing with male-male or female-female sexuality, are routinely seized at the border. The same publications, when destined for mainstream booksellers in the country, have often been delivered without delay or question.[3] Glad Day Bookshop, an LGBT bookstore in Toronto, has faced similar difficulties.[2]

Its travails were fictionalized as a subplot of the film Better Than Chocolate. A feature-length documentary film by Aerlyn Weissman, Little Sister's vs. Big Brother (2002), has also been released about the bookstore.[2] Fuller was also a coauthor with Stuart Blackley of the book Restricted Entry: Censorship on Trial, a non-fiction account of the Little Sister's battle, and wrote an introduction for Forbidden Passages: Writings Banned in Canada, an anthology of excerpts from some of the impounded works which was edited by Patrick Califia.[4] Both books were published in 1995, and were awarded Lammys at the 8th Lambda Literary Awards ceremony in 1996.

The bookstore's co-owner, Jim Deva, died on September 21, 2014 at age 65.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "B.C. Heroes: Janine Fuller". Vancouver Sun, March 3, 2011.
  2. ^ a b c "A tale of two bookstores". Xtra!, January 19, 2006.
  3. ^ see Little Sisters Book and Art Emporium v. Canada (Minister of Justice) at paras. 12, 112 and 116
  4. ^ "Censorship Trial Spawns Books". Cuir, March/April 1996.
  5. ^ "Vancouver LGBTQ activist Jim Deva dead at 65". The Province, September 22, 2014.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 49°16′56″N 123°08′03″W / 49.282336°N 123.134251°W / 49.282336; -123.134251