Well this year the usual Pongal Book Fair by BAPASI did not happen at Nandanam because of the devastating December floods of 2015.
Some splinter groups set up a fair at Royapettah during Pongal – but well that was no way the real deal. The floods of 2015 caused severe damage to participating publishers – the total loss is estimated at about 25 crores, which is very tough to recover; despite insurance!
This year the fair was held at Island Grounds. The usual competitions for children in terms of painting, debates, elocution and writing went on with the usual fan-fare. The venue has a toy-train that’s quite remarkable and drew a steady crowd.
The Fair is significant as a book which I compiled and includes submissions by members of the Chennai Bloggers Club – “After the Floods” was published by Sixth Sense Publications.
Edited by KS Lakshmi, Cover and trailer by Kishor LN and a wonderful introduction by RJ Balaji.
We thank Karthikeyan PK from Sixth Sense Publications for trusting the efforts of the bloggers!
Buy the book online
There are lots of stalls this time around – almost 700. Lots of books, stalls from Singapore with books priced really steep 😦 organic seeds and planting, usual spiritual, cookery, self-help, fiction, comics, management, competitive exams, all the usual books. A stall on blow paint drawing techniques and one about robots and stuff for kids was quite interesting. As I had clear instructions on not to buy books I just walked like a drug-addict away from a stash of fine-cut cocaine but no chance of getting my hands to the ‘coke’!
The rains made a sudden appearance on Tuesday night and scared the living daylights with water gushing in through gaps in the pandal sheets above. It was deja-vu again as water flowed through. Thankfully the rain gods were kind enough and did not trouble too much after that.
The Fair ends tomorrow go pick your books and buy a copy of our anthology as well.
In terms of food, the spread was outstanding and real good job by the catering contractors who have brought in various vendors to the fair!