World Book Fair being held in New Delhi for last 41 years is one event everyone in love with books looks forward to. It’s being held in Pragati Maidan from 14th Feb 2015 to 22 Feb 2015. In addition to providing a direct link between publishers from all over the world to audiences, these book fairs have numerous added attractions like book releases, author talks and a bunch of fun activities for children. The discounts offered by the participants are a big draw. Visitors can buy books at about 10 to 60 percent discounts on printed prices. Additionally, one can buy old or second hand books for as cheap as Rs 100. Entry fees in Rs 20 for adults and Rs 10 for children and can be bought on entry gates.
There is something for everyone in such book fairs. For students, there are a number of famous publishers offering books and accessories for pre-schoolers as well as scholars. Casual readers are spoiled for choice as there are a number of book sellers selling novels by authors such as Stephen King, Frederick Forsyth, E.L.James at dirt cheap prices starting from Rs 100. Most of such stalls were swamped by people looking to fill up their reading quota in bulk. For more serious readers, there are many reputed publishers of all types offering books on diverse topics like ancient history, geo-strategy, science, agriculture, travel and numerous others covering almost everything under the sun. Comic books are on a short supply as we saw only one small stall selling comics and posters of a few companies like Marvel. With the number of new and interesting comic books and concepts we see in each comic con, we expected a bigger presence.
Indian languages like Hindi and other regional languages had a different hall with a number of Indian publishing houses like Geeta Press, National Book Trust and many other big and small publishers. A large number of the books in this section were about Indian history, contemporary issues, religion, education and politics. It’d have been better i there was a bit more about science too
Interestingly, this time we noticed a few stalls offering publishing opportunities to aspiring authors which we have not noticed before.
We chose not to take camera inside the book fair as we expected to have our hands too full to use one which actually happened. With one hour of entering the first hall, each one of us had 1-3 bags of books full. The inventory got bigger as we visited other halls and bought even more. The discounts were too good to pass ! Now we don’t have a single picture to show from Pragati Maidan, but the photo includes some of the books we bought. There are a few more with our friends who were with us in addition to a couple of posters and mugs which are not in this picture. Not too much, but enough for at least 5-6 weeks of reading.