This House of Books
Our co-op has a very simple mission: Build an independent bookstore in downtown Billings and turn it into a literary & cultural hub for the city. Using the cooperative model means that we give book lovers a chance to own a piece of the store and participate in its success. One of the things that makes this store unique is the number of author member/owners, including award-winning writers in a variety of genres. We love the concept of a bookstore run by people involved in all aspects of the book business.
In selecting a name for the Billings Bookstore Cooperative store, we wanted to highlight our deep Montana roots and the literature that forms the cornerstone of the business. With that in mind, we have chosen “This House of Books.” The name is a tribute to the iconic Montana author Ivan Doig and his autobiographical masterpiece, “This House of Sky.”
The name, however, is more than that. It’s a reference to our store’s community ties. We want our member/owners to think of us as a home, a refuge from the real world, a house filled with books. The fact that over a dozen of those books are Ivan’s makes it all the better!
Our member/owners tend to be lovers of big sky country, and many of us are writers. Ivan has been an inspiration to us. His lyrical prose captures us even as he’s slipping a history lesson into each book. Above and beyond that, Ivan was something the world has all too few of these days: a gentleman.