Great Britain, the largest book exporter in the world and “the book market in Europe to which Romania is the best connected”, according to Grigore Arsene, AER president, Bookfest organiser, is the guest honour of the 2019 edition of Bookfest International Book Salon, due at Romexpo, Pavilion B2, May 29-June 2.
From accepting this statute, one year ago and up to the start of Bookfest 2019, the organisers, the British Council Romania, next to the UK Embassy in Bucharest and their partners, have prepared an impressive programme of various and relevant events.
The British ambassador to Romania, Andrew Noble said it is a great joy for his country to be the guest of honour at Bookfest this year and to celebrate next to the Romanian readers “the indisputable power of books to unite people and different cultures“. According to the ambassador, UK is taking this opportunity “to celebrate diversity in literature, to reiterate the role of culture in the dialogue among various identities and to provide a unique experience through the invited authors.”
The UK presence will be marked by 50 events, including debates, book launches, creative workshops and film screenings.
In his turn, Nigel Bellingham, the director of British Council Romania, stated that the “UK’s programme is reflecting the richness and diversity of the British culture and education, having literature and books for children in the spotlight, bringing characters who represent the diversity of the modern Great Britain.”
He added that the aim is to turn UK’s presence at Bookfest into a real celebration of the British creativity and of the excellence in education, as well as of the ceaseless friendship with Romania.
Running under the motto „Culture is GREAT”, Great Britain will provide the Romanian readers with the opportunity of meeting 10 authors and 4 publishing experts within over 50 events.
Six British invited authors, Sarah Perry, Clare Mackintosh, Claire North, Arabella McIntyre-Brown, Ross Wellford, Eugen Ovidiu Chirovici, have their books already translated in Romanian and will attend the launch of their recently translated books in Romanian, in partnership with the publishing houses: Trei, Paladin, Corint, RAO, Nemira, Vellant and ALL.
The other British authors who will be present in Bucharest whose books have not yet been translated in Romanian, will attend debates on various topics tackled in their books: “literature and politics” (Mahsuda Snaith’s novels, with ambassador Andrew Noble attending), “literature and gender equality” (event inspired from the novels by Kirsty Logan), “the role of illustrations in the success of the books” (illustrator Neil Layton).
There will be two debates dedicated to translations: a first event getting together Romanian translators from English who will try to answer a difficult question: “is it that simple to translate from English?” and a second one getting together Romanian translators to English, exploring the opportunities and obstacles of translating Romanian literature in English.
Two round tables on publishing issues will see important names of the British and Romanian publishing industries: Niki Chang (The Good Agency), Lucy Beresford-Knox (Penguin Random House), Simona Kessler (Simona Kessler International Copyright Agency), Mihai Mitrică (The Association of the Publishers from Romania), Paul Balogh (Learn Forward).
14 events will be dedicated to the little ones, being available at the Bookfest Junior stall, ranging from storytelling workshops, cooking workshops, public reading sessions with British author Ross Wellford and illustration workshops performed by Neil Layton.
Bookfest 2019 will also offer 13 British documentaries and films produced in the past 5 years, which also explore diversity. Great Britain’s presence at Bookfest 2019 will be completed by the “Drawing Words” exhibition, a project that gets together the best and most unique examples of illustrations of books for children released in UK in the past years.
Romania Journal is supporting Bookfest 2019 as media partner.