My day at London Book Fair

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Now this is London book fair , well part of it . I was lucky to get an invite to come and spend the day from Susan at Istros books at The Croatian writers stand .I got there just in time for the opening of the stand by the Croatian ambassador .

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Where he mention the events over the next few days and the wonderful list that Peter Elborn and the British Croatian society which featured all the books from Croatia translated to English although a few more have appeared since it is a wonderful list one I will be using to find a few books to read .Now the first event at the stand was a reading from the Bulgarian writer Alek Popov , who’s first book Istros published Mission London my review of this book.

20150414_120755He was reading from his second novel to be translated into English Black Box a dual story of one man in New york a Bulgarian abroad and a man returning to Bulgaria to find a man named Kurtz (Yes a connection to Heart of darkness /Apocalypse now ) . His new book is to be published by Peter Owen  , I will have a review soonish as I managed to get a copy from them  .At this point I decide to wander the fair although having made the unwose decison on new shoes for the day hop round the fair would be a better . I took chance to say hello to some people I know via twitter .Catherine Taylor from English Pen , Victor from Haus publishing , he told me about a great book they are due to publish this year about Thomas Mann and the decision he made in 1936 to writer a letter about the Nazi Regime and send it to a paper in Germany .I also had a nice long chat with Alan the blogger from Words of mercury . I also finally meet Malcolm from Oxygen books that publish the city lit series of books but is also doing a project for the arts council in the south-east promoting books in translation .I eventually got back to the Croatian writer stand before the next event .

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The next event was the launch of Farewell cowboy by Olja Savičević , this was the first of two launchs of the book here and in the evening at the embassy .Olja read from here book in Croatian then the passages she had read were read in English by the translator Celia Hawkesworth .The book follows a sister returning to find out more about her brother’s death . I have read the book twice and will be reviewing soon. I managed later in the day to grab Olja and have a short chat with her about the book .

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Then after the reading we had two types of traditional Croat Spirits Rakija one is made from Honey Medica and the other from Mistletoe Biska .Then we all departed to the evening reception and launch for the book at the Croatian embassy , so as I said to my wife I was in Croatia ,which did worry her that I had run off til I explained i was still in London .

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So The ambassador Dr Ivan Grdešić, introduced Olja and Celia again and we had another reading and then some wine and Fig cake to celebrate the books launch .Then Olja, Celia and Susan from istros books were all filmed by the Croatian News team as they were going to be on last nights news in Croatia . I was amazed that writers still make the news and arts is still held in such high regards to be newsworthy in Croatia . It was a double celebration for the ambassador his son-in-law had won this years European union literature prize that day 

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Thanks to Susan from Istros for the day and all the lovely Croatian writer union and publishers I meet on tuesday

19 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. kaggsysbookishramblings
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 09:57:50

    Sounds like you had a fun time, Stu!🙂

    Reply

  2. Tony
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 10:53:33

    Glad you had a good day, Stu. I’d love to make it over one day (unlikely, though…).

    Reply

  3. Bina
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 11:28:45

    So wonderful you got to go to the fair, Stu! I really like the look of the City Lit series, it’s great you got to talk to some of the authors and organizers.

    Reply

  4. Dagny
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 14:15:49

    What a great day, Stu! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

  5. JacquiWine
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 17:21:45

    Glad to hear you had a good day, Stu. Sounds like you had a very productive time at the LBF!

    Reply

  6. A Little Blog of Books
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 22:07:58

    I’m very jealous – sounds like a great day!

    Reply

  7. Lisa Hill
    Apr 16, 2015 @ 22:16:19

    Oh wow, this sounds wonderful, you lucky thing.
    There’s just something about being around people who love books, eh?

    Reply

  8. parrish lantern
    Apr 17, 2015 @ 10:46:15

    Shame I couldn’t get the time to go, as it would have been nice to meet yourself & Susan from Istros, maybe another time when my work doesn’t get in the way.

    Reply

  9. farmlanebooks
    Apr 17, 2015 @ 10:48:39

    What a fantastic day! I’m so pleased you had a good time and got to meet so many wonderful people. Hopefully one day our paths will cross as I’d love to chat to you about books.

    Reply

  10. Jody
    Apr 17, 2015 @ 14:34:47

    What a wonderful opportunity !

    Thank-you for introducing me to the very fine Istros Publishing Company.
    I have purchased several books from their collection recently during your Eastern European Literature Month project.

    Reply

  11. Alex
    Apr 17, 2015 @ 15:16:57

    You know, I don’t think I’ve ever read a book by a Croatian in my life! You should do a post with more recommendations, the ones you listed sounds really interesting!

    Reply

  12. Caroline
    Apr 18, 2015 @ 08:35:21

    Looks like you had an amazing day.

    Reply

  13. Bellezza
    Apr 19, 2015 @ 19:27:14

    I can think of few others to better represent the book world, especially the books in translation! I tell you, these ceremonies, these bookish days, make me wish I lived in London! There are so many people I’d like to meet, so many publishers I’d like to peruse. Glad you could be there, Stu.

    Reply

  14. Mytwostotinki
    Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:17:50

    What an exciting day! You made me a bit jealous, so I just booked my flight and accomodation for the Frankfurt Book Fair in October.

    Reply

  15. Kinna
    Apr 22, 2015 @ 22:30:36

    Your day at the fair was exciting and delightful!

    Reply

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