New Year Book Festival: three days of festive season celebration set to open in Tbilisi

Visitors will be welcomed to the National Parliamentary Library for the Festival. Photo: Tbilisi New Year Book Festival., 20 Dec 2018 - 16:36, Tbilisi,Georgia

A celebration of all things book-related will join in on the Christmas season for the fifth year in Tbilisi, as publishers and readers prepare to come together at the city’s New Year Book Festival over the next three days.

Known as a gathering where major book sales encourage visitors to get titles as presents for their family and friends, the Festival will open the doors of the National Parliamentary Library in the capital.

A majority of Georgian publishing houses will offer sales to new and previously available books, with 32 companies set to take up stalls with presentations and interactive games.

Book enthusiasts view new literature presented at stalls. Photo: Tbilisi New Year Book Festival.

At the official opening on Friday, Festival organisers from the Georgian Publishers and Booksellers Association will award bestselling books of the year.

It will be followed by three days of presentations of new titles in prose and poetry and talks on diverse subjects ranging from ways of creating better school environment for children to exploring characters of the 12th century national poem The Knight in the Panther’s Skin.

Newly unveiled translations of foreign-language masterpieces will include Life and Songs of the Crow by English poet Ted Hughes Raven and the Dark Tower series by American author Stephen King.

There will also be presentations for non-fiction works, from an album on history and architecture of the Parliamentary Library to a series of books on economy from the University of Georgia publishing.

The annual festival offers special sales to encourage festive season book gifting. Photo: Tbilisi New Year Book Festival.

Enthusiasts of comic books will learn about a new title following adventures of Georgian folk tale protagonist Amirani, while young readers will be treated a range of new books from children’s literature.

Beside unveiling print editions, the Festival space will welcome meetings and talks between audiences and popular figures like photographer Goga Chanadiri and author and screenwriter Guram Megrelishvili, with the latter set to speak to parents about ways of introducing kids to books.

A panel discussion will specifically review Georgia’s participation at the Frankfurt Book Fair as the official Guest of Honour last October, as well as results and challenges identified by professionals from the occasion.

The Tbilisi New Year Book Festival was established in 2014 by the GPBA to promote literature and establish a tradition of gifting books between relatives and friends over festive season.

It is a second book festival held by the Association after Tbilisi International Book Fair, with the most recent edition involving up to 30 publishing houses and bookstores.