Looking back from London

The Book Fair returns to the classics

By Roger Williams | March 14, 2017


The London Book Fair opened today with Poland as the ‘Market Focus’ country, and trade looked brisk. The behemoth publishing houses occupied centre stage with vast stands and clients checking in for their appointment. Better to wander around the edge of Olympia’s Exhibition Halls to find publishers less susceptible to passing fads.

Reprints are giving books long shelf lives. North London’s Darf Publishers, who started in 1980 with reprints of 18th–20th century Europeans writers mainly on the Middle East and Africa (The Fall of Constantinople by Edwin Pears, 1886; The Story Of The Barbary Corsairs by Stanley Lane-Poole, 1890), are now spreading their net wider and looking for translations of new stories. The spring list of I.B. Taurus meanwhile includes Athos: The Holy Mountain by Sydney Loch, an Anzac veteran who lived in the Tower of Ouranopolis (now a museum) on the Athos peninsula with his wife Joice, who completed his manuscript two years after his death in 1955. 

In the printing area Istanbul’s Ofset Yapımevi (above) looked thoroughly up to date, showcasing its recent and forthcoming work with some beautiful examples of its mastery of modern printing. Ofset is the printer of choice for MoMA, the Metropolitan Museum, Aperture and other top American galleries and museums, and of course Cornucopia.

For the latest book offers, see The Cornucopia Bookshop. The bookshop is currently running special offers on a number of books, including The Man Who Created the Middle East: A Story of Empire, Conflict and the Sykes-Picot Agreement by Christopher Simon Sykes and Speedy Motor: Travels Across Asia and the Middle East in a Morgan by John Carswell. You can read reviews of both books in Issue 55.

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