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2008 International Book Fairs


International Book Fairs 2008

A large number of international book fairs are held throughout the year. Most of these are primarily intended as trade fairs for the book trade, but an increasing number have extensive programmes of cultural events and opportunities to meet authors. Some set out to attract the general public, others have particular days when the public can get in.

Although they're not really intended for authors, the book fairs are worth researching, as you may find that there is one you can get to. The benefits are the vast array of new and forthcoming books on display, the seminars, conferences and author events which may be planned, and the chance to see the publishing world in action.

John Makinson, CEO of Penguin, on the enduring appeal of book fairs: 'Yet we keep going, if we're honest, because the publishing industry is a community and it thrives on personal contact - the chance encounter, the hurried drink and the languid lunch. And as communication in our business becomes ever more electronic, that personal contact seems more vital. So my guess is that book fairs will continue to grow and grow.'

Last year's list of book fairs has been updated for 2008, including a few more new ones. The information becomes sketchier towards the end of the year, and some annual fairs seem to have been cancelled for this year. We will try to revise this list as more information becomes available, but for now please note that the asterisks show last year's date (and the new dates will mostly be around the same time).

2008 Book Fairs

Taipei International Fair

13 -18 February

Jerusalem Book Fair

15 - 20 February

Baltic Book Fair

28 February - 2 March

The 2008 Baltic Book Fair will be held at the International Exhibition Centre, Riga, Latvia.

New Delhi World Book Fair

2 - 10 February

The Fair not only offers a glimpse of the multi-lingual publishing industry in India, which has developed substantially in recent years, but also meets the needs of the vast Indian book market.

Leipzig Book Fair

13 - 16 March

127,500 visitors at the 2007 Fair.

Salon du Livre

14-19 March

The French book fair, an elegant meeting-point for the book trade with a large number of meetings and many events organised for the public.

Abu Dhabi Book Fair

11 - 16 March

Attended by 200,00 visitors, is being grown to attract an international and trade audience.  The Sheikh Zayed Awards are announced during the Fair. Sponsored by Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage in cooperation with Frankfurter Buchmesse.

London Book Fair

14 - 16 April

Europe’s premier international spring book fair, increasingly seen as the key book fair for the first half of the year, balancing the Frankfurt Book Fair in the second half. British publishers are of course out in force, but this fair now attracts visitors from all over the world. The second year in  Earls Court.

Bologna Children’s Book Fair

31 March 1 April http://www.bookfair.bolognafiere.

The top international children’s book fair, attended by children’s publishers from all over the world. Many feel that this is the best book fair of them all, graced by a relaxed atmosphere, wonderful food and a great location in the lovely Italian city of Bologna.

Bangkok International Book Fair

28 March - 10 April

Surely one of the longest international book fairs, this is organised by the Thai Publishers and Booksellers Association.  Free admission to the public.


3 - 7 April  Bringing together content decision-makers from the worlds of digital entertainment, Internet, mobile and Interactive, this is the biggest international gathering of its kind.


International Book Festival 24 - 27 April

Cultural events and conferences on issues affecting the book trade. 

Warsaw International Book Fair

15-18 May

Nigeria International Book Fair

7 - 12 May*

Designed to give existing and prospective publishers and booksellers the opportunity of exploring and exploiting the country's book market.

BookExpo America - Los Angeles

30 May - 1 June

Primarily a trade fair which enables American publishers to show booksellers their fall lists, this big fair has been through many vicissitudes, but is currently seen as rather less of an international fair, although the fair authorities are trying to reverse this trend and have developed a programme for writers which is worth investigating.

BookExpo Canada in Toronto

13 - 15 June

Canada’s leading event for the book publishing industry

Cape Town Book Fair

14 - 17 June

Following on from its inaugural fair last year, this is hoping to establish this as the big African event. A combined trade fair and literary event open to the public.

American Library Association Conference

in Anaheim

  26 June 2 July

Tokyo International Book Fair

10-13 July

Big event for Asian book trade, giving access to the world's second biggest book market. In 2007 it had 749 exhibitors from 29 countries and regions, and attracted 55,943 visitors.

Hong Kong Book Fair

23 - 29 July

Over 763,545 visitors in 2007, this is now becoming one of the big ones.

Beijing International Book Fair

1 - 4 September

Important fair for publishers from all over the world who are interested in getting into the booming Chinese market, this has rapidly established itself as an essential stop on the international rights circuit. It will have a new venue for this year.

Moscow International Book Fair

3 -8 September

Much earlier in the year than in 2006.

London Remainder and Promotional Book Fair

14 - 15 September

Thousands of remainder and bargain books – not for the faint-hearted author!

Goteborg International Book Fair

25 - 28 September

Biggest meeting-point for Scandinavian literature, attracting authors and the media as well as the trade. 

Frankfurt Book Fair

15-19 October

This is still the big one, the premier international book fair which is attended by publishers from all over the world and is also open to the German public for some of the time.  This huge fair is a meeting-place and rights marketplace for the global publishing industry, but it is a trade fair and there's not much for authors except in the German halls.

(See our Inside Publishing article on the Frankfurt Book Fair.)

Istanbul Book Fair, Turkey

15 - 19 October

Salon du Livre, Montreal

19 - 24 November

Feria International del Libro de Guadalajara

Mexico 29 November - 7 December. This is supposed to be the largest Spanish book event in the world.