PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- Step into Octavia's bookshelf and you'll find fiction-themed merchandise and stacks of novels celebrating authors who are Black, indigenous or people of color.
"Octavia's Bookshelf will highlight those authors every single day," said Nikki High, the owner of Octavia's bookshelf.
With these authors competing against tens of thousands of titles to get stocked in bookstores, High, who's from Pasadena - wanted to help.
High said, growing up it was hard to find Black characters and authors to relate to.
"A time period where there's not a lot of representation of me - right, on television, magazines, whatever. So you're sort of limited to how much you can dream," she said.
She noticed something while reading sci-fi as a kid.
"I never really saw Black people in the future. The writers were creating these fantasy stories in a thousand years and I was like 'wait, where did all the people of color go?'" she said.
High's love of reading started at a young age, but it was one specific sci-fi author that changed the way she saw books.
That author was a Pasadena native, Octavia Butler, who wrote dystopian stories with themes like black injustice and women's rights. It inspired her - hence the name behind High's new bookstore, "Octavia's Bookshelf."
"A month where we celebrate Black authors and activists and politicians, and to think that in some small way I am contributing to that celebration by being the first Black woman to open a bookstore in Pasadena - it means so much to me," she said.
Octavia's Bookshelf will open its doors on Feb. 18 during Black History Month.