Hustle for Books at the New Delhi World Book Fair!
March 17, 2023 at 6:30:00 AM
Welcome to the World Book Fair. New Delhi.
Well, as we all know, there can be no particular time to celebrate literature, isn’t it? A few days back, that’s exactly what we, at Team Booknerds did!
So, we visited the World Book Fair 2023, in Delhi and we are so excited to share all the details with you all!
The World Book Fair, held annually in New Delhi, is a book lover's paradise.
It is one of the biggest literary events in the country.
The 31st edition of the fair was hosted at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, and witnessed a huge turnout of book enthusiasts, publishers, and authors.
The event started on February 25 and continued till March 5.
Over 40 countries participated in this Book Fair, which had 800 publishers and 2000 book stalls from across the globe.
This year’s theme was “ Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav ” given the celebration of 75 years of India’s independence promoted by the Ministry of Culture, Govt of India.
Here go some deets from our firsthand experience at this year’s World Book Fair!
France was the guest of honour this time, and their author lineup drew huge crowds and applause.
They had even created a super appealing French Pavilion, designed by graphic novelist Simon Lamouret to resemble a French bookstore with a café inside. About 16 French authors participated in the Book Fair this time. The lineups included a lecture by the 2022 Nobel Prize in Literature winner, Annie Ernaux on the very first day, a discussion on illustration with graphic novelists Zeina Abirached, Lisa Mandel, Mathieu Bertrand and Lamouret, a talk on children’s literature with author Susie Morgenstern; and a performative reading by Karthika Nair and Joëlle Jollivet. Live painting sessions, a DJ, and a cafe in collaboration with L’Opera and also the fantastic cappuccinos were the highlights of the pavilion.
The red carpet for authors organized by Notion Press (a Leading Self - Publishing Platform ) was yet another highlight of this year’s World Book Fair.
We enjoyed finding books by authors including Nikhlesh Mathur, Veena Kapur, Ranabir Sen, and Ashok Bhasin and meeting Sanjoy K Roy (Founder, Jaipur Literature Festival), and Naveen Valsakumar (Founder, Notionpress) at the World Book Fair.
Needless to mention, Notionpress prioritized authors and gave them the due credit with a red-carpet welcome. While we came across an author who was seen enjoying the event with a sash calling himself Prince, some authors had written about the intricacies of writing something impromptu.
Team Booknerds also had the pleasure of meeting Naveen Valsakumar, the Founder of Notionpress. Valsakumar ardently declared, “Next year it is going to be bigger and better!”
The quaint stalls and their beautifully adorned wooden bookshelves would have drawn any book lover’s attention.
Simon and Schuster had an amazing Manga curation, while innovative categories like Bookstagrammer favourites, especially books by Colleen Hoover drew a lot of attention.
Publications like Penguin, Bloomsbury, and Harper were full to the brim. Penguin was managed by the new cool bookstore chain called Kunzum which was extremely patient in managing the crowd of book lovers like us.
Jay Shetty’s new book was a huge hit.
Visitors had the opportunity to meet authors like Akshat Gupta, renowned for The Hidden Hindu and Saksham Garg, known for creating Samsara, our very own Indian Harry Potter!
There was also an amazing collection of books for children and young adults.
Authors of children’s books like Priyanka Agarwal Mehta and Richa Jha did a great job of addressing issues like cancer, empathy, and communication in their respective works.
We felt that the publishing space is getting revamped every year owing to the contributions of such good authors.
The hustle over books seemed to be never-ending!
The usual hustle for books on discount was also seen.
There were people carrying travel bags and suitcases to accommodate their purchases.
However, the dominance of Hindi was evident, with Vani Prakashan stealing the thunder with their stall 'Sahitya Ghar'.
They also created a section for author sessions.
The glitches that we noticed:
Despite the grandeur of the event, there were some issues with management, coordination, and sound.
Author sessions and stages were at times futile due to sound distractions, causing frustration among visitors.
Overall, the World Book Fair in New Delhi was a grand success, and country-wide book enthusiasts flocked in.
Navigating our favourite book stalls and interacting with authors, visiting this book fair was a remarkable experience for us.
With the addition of innovative categories, live sessions, and the presence of some renowned publishing houses and authors, the fair was truly a paradise for book lovers.
This week Team Booknerds has started reading Chapter 31 by Ashok Bhasin and it has been a thrilling read so far. Chapter 31 is a thrilling and fast-paced novel based on the narcotics mafia. After the retired chief of India's Narcotics Control Bureau, Rahul Mehra notices a chapter that resembles a situation he had encountered, he becomes embroiled in a political endgame with far-reaching consequences. The novel is full of twists and turns that make it an unputdownable read.
Do let us know what books you have read recently and don't forget to share your experience of visiting book fairs.