Bibliophiles throng litfest for sheer love of books

Bibliophiles throng litfest for sheer love of books

Publishers and owners of book stalls participating in the Book Exhibition of the 83rd Akhila Bharata Kannada Sahitya Sammelana here, are of the opinion that there can never be a dearth for readers as long as there are good books to read.

The publishers however, rue the fact that there are not any notable young writer whom readers can identify. They said, most of the literary books being sold are of older generation writers. They were unhappy with the allotment of stalls in the book exhibition for commercial business. Some said that the organisers should not allow any commercial sales during the literary festival.

M G Aruna of Sahitya Bhandar said that his company is in the business for the past 85 years only due to a good reader base, who buy books. "We don't sell our books to government agencies. We don't have to appease the officials. People buy our books out of sheer love for reading. The readers are actually increasing. I see more hope in the future," he said.

"Even though writer S L Bhyrappa is not present in the sammelana, his books are in great demand not only in our stall, but in other stalls as well. Besides, there is also a great demand for Kuvempu's 'Malegalall Madhumagalu', 'Makuthimmana Kagga' of Da Ra Bendra and also books of Poornachandra Tejasvi," he said. Ko Na Purushotham of Srirangapatna Taluk Chutuka Sahitya said that his stall saw more sales for P Lankesh's books, followed by 'Tipu Sultan' of Shiek Ali and his own 'Lolalotte'.

G B T Mohan Kumar of Geethanjali Publishers from Shimoga said that Shivarama Karanth's small stories were the favourite among book lovers, followed by books of Hama Nayak and Na D'Souza. "In general, people are still asking for books authored by senior writers, most of who are no more. New writers, who command a readership, are yet to emerge. Most people buy books for their children. So, books meant for children are in great demand," he said.

Neelakantegowda, a Kannada lecturer, of Yuvasadhane, from Bengaluru said, their's is the only private publication into research work and even such books are evoking good response. "We have sold around 150 copies of 'Kalachurina Shasanagalu' and 170 copies of 'Kannada Lipi Vikasa'. My book 'Vyakarana Marga ' has sold 800 copies, which has crossed a total sales of 3.5 lakh," he said.

Most of the stalls from North Karnataka are selling books for competitive exams with little response. Revannasiddappa of Sangama Publications from Tumakuru, who stocks children's books, said that in North Karnataka, people are more worried about eking out a livelihood and hence buy books related to competitive exams, but people in South Karnataka buy books on literature.

Parashivppa of Sneha Book House said that among books of young writers, only motivational and personality development books are in demand. Nidhi Subramanya of Srinidhi Books, Mysuru, said that during the first two days sales of books was dull, but it picked up on the last day. "In my stall, a collection of short stories by Kodagina Gowramma sold 80 copies," he said.

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