A New York TikToker claiming to have psychic powers is creating new demand for a 22-year-old book published in Saskatoon.
Marni Webb posted a TikTok video about a dream where a man asked her “Is the fifth window open?”
In the video, viewed more than three million times, Webb said she Googled the phrase and found a book of poetry called The Fifth Window.
Webb said she became intrigued by the book when she had difficulty accessing it. Some of Webb’s supporters speculated that there was a conspiracy behind why the book was hard to find.
“Turns out it’s only available in academic settings like Yale Library and Harvard,” the TikToker explains in the video.
Webb said she could only find a copy at the New York Public Library in the restricted section.
“I think the fact that I couldn’t have immediate access to this book made me want to read it more,” Webb told CTV News from Brooklyn.
Webb’s video garnered thousands of comments from other TikTok users also wanting a copy of the book.
With such a request, Thistledown Press reprints The Fifth Window.
Caroline Walker, editor of Thistledown, said it was unusual for a book of poems to gain so much traction, decades after the original release.
“We’ve had orders from overseas – places as far away as Australia, Norway, Germany, Bulgaria, England, Ireland – all sorts of places you wouldn’t expect to order this little book of Canadian poetry,” Walker said.
“We were surprised but really thrilled and excited to make the book available again.”
The Fifth Window author Russell Thornton has also been inundated with messages regarding his book.
Thornton’s 13-year-old daughter is the one who showed him the video.
“I was baffled … she’s dreaming the exact words of my book title,” Thornton told CTV News from her home in Vancouver.
“At first I thought someone was playing a prank on me.”
The Fifth Window is one of Thornton’s earliest publications. He said he didn’t expect any of his older books to be reprinted.
“To hear that there are orders for that, it’s really nice on a personal level. But it’s just as pleasant at the communal level. It’s very difficult to get attention for Canadian poetry,” said Thornton.
The Vancouver author sent Webb one of her personal copies of the book, which she recorded herself opening in another TikTok video.
“There were two poems that really touched me because it was something I wrote years ago when I was younger, also based on a dream,” Webb told CTV News.
“There have been too many coincidences.”
Additional copies of The Fifth Window are expected to be available in March.