Beginning this weekend, the Toronto Star, Canada’s largest daily newspaper, is doubling its weekly print books coverage from two pages to four. The newspaper will also run extended bestseller lists, featuring categories such as original fiction and nonfiction, Canadian fiction and nonfiction, kids’ and young adult books, and rotating lists from various subgenres. The section, led by books editor Deborah Dundas, will include more book reviews, excerpts, and event listings, and will move from the Sunday paper to the Saturday paper.
At a time when books coverage in newspapers across North America is continually shrinking, this will be good news for authors and publishers looking to bring attention to their titles. According to Bob Hepburn, the Toronto Star’s director of community relations and communications, the decision was made after conducting a number of reader surveys. “Many readers told us they would like to see more coverage of books and authors, particularly Canadian books and authors,” said Hepburn. “Our decision to expand our book pages was made in an effort to better meet those readers' interests.”
He adds that while they haven’t made any specific advertisement deals with Canadian publishers or literary organizations related to this expansion, the paper hopes that those groups will support their efforts. The Toronto Star itself has long been a supporter of the local literary community as a media sponsor for the Word on the Street Festival, the International Festival of Authors, and the Toronto Book Awards, among other efforts.