Friday, April 17, 2009

The Book Fair hits town

Rain and emergency engineering works on my particular stretch of the District Line (timed to perfection by the evil geniuses at Transport for London), almost conspire to make me late today for lunch with my German publisher. Tina Arnold of DTV is over from Munich for the London Book Fair, which officially opens on Monday at Earl’s Court. Dagmer, her London scout, not only recommends books for her, it seems, but also restaurants; in this case, Moro in Exmouth Market. And a good recommendation it turns out to be. The lamb I have is really delicious. If it were a painting, I would frame it and hang it on a wall.

I have spoken to Tina on the phone, but this is the first time we’ve actually met. She turns out to be delightful and funny. She also seems to know a vast amount about Shakespeare (a few years back she sat through the RSC’s entire Henry VI cycle twice), added to which she speaks English slightly better than I do, which doesn’t really seem fair. I do manage to make a hash of describing the new book I've started working on - I really should practise these things - but otherwise the whole event is great fun.

Tina brings with her good news from the German market, namely that orders for all kinds of books are holding up very well; if anything, better than last year, and certainly better than expected. This may mean that the book market is largely recession-proof; on the other hand, it may just mean the recession hasn’t really arrived in Germany yet.

Meanwhile translation of The Einstein Girl continues apace. Apparently the translator lives in Berlin where most of the action of the book takes place. She has gone as far as to seek out certain of the key locations, most importantly Albert Einstein's summer house in Caputh, which is now open to the public. Now that's what I call dedication.


Lost Wanderer said...

The news about your book is great. If the German publisher is being enthusiastic then it must have good chances of success there.

Good luck. I will be sure to add it to my list to read.

KeKe said...

Congrats and good luck! I look forward to reading it.

Philip Sington said...

Kind sentiments. Many thanks!

Katy said...

Wonderful news about your book, congratulations! Great news too about the book market holding up in these trying economic times - but then, by what other medium can one be both entertained and transported through time and space for around a tenner? :-)

Thank you too for sharing your rather glamorous-sounding day - definitely makes all of those dark tea times of the soul worth grinding through.