Friday, February 10, 2012
Reading the World, Hong Kong Book Fair 2012
Of course, no one in Hong Kong is interested in reading. Or books. Or that's what people think. And then you turn up to the Hong Kong Book Fair and rub shoulders with the million or so other visitors, and then you begin to wonder.
China, is of course the place where the written word has a special status. And its a rewarding experience to see the enthusiasm and the excitment that books can provoke among all ages.
Last year, I felt a little anachronistic, being scheduled to speak about a novel on Dark Age England, in Hong Kong, the brightest neon of the modern, overlit age. But I had a very solid 100 or so writers, of whom a handful were ex pats and the rest a fascinated audience of Hong Kongers and Mainlanders.
I've just had a meeting with the people running the Book Fair this year. The theme is 'Reading the World.' I think it's going to be a great event, and I look forward to walking round and feeling the passion of the readers around us.