First held in
1963, the Jerusalem International Book Fair is a unique biennial event drawing
many heads of publishing houses, agents, sales personnel, foreign rights
representatives, editors and authors - and, of course, lots and lots of buyers
perusing 100,000 books in different languages from more than 30
At the 26th Jerusalem International Book Fair
in February 2013, Ilan
Greenfield of Gefen Publishing House remarked, "We meet here many, many people
from different places of the world. Israel has probably the highest number of
books written per capita a year. There is definitely a reason why we are called
the 'people of the book.'"
"It's very international," adds one book fair
visitor. "There are lots of publishing houses; it's also very Israeli because
there are a lot of special things that are only Israeli or Jewish."
a great opportunity to meet others, to meet editors, to meet translators, to
meet publishers," adds Rohring Geza, a writer from Budapest.
of book fairs and the exchange of thoughts is very good for peaceful bonding
between nations and as well as people," states Bashir Shaikk, a publisher from
While we will have to wait until 2015 for the next international
book fair in Jerusalem, Hebrew Book Week
is celebrated annually
in Israel. The first of a number of book fairs was held in 1926 along Rothschild
Boulevard in Tel Aviv the city that proclaimed itself to be the citadel of
Zionist-Hebrew culture. Yearly fairs offering books at 25% off list price were
instituted in 1961.
From June 5-15, 2013, outdoor book fairs will be held
throughout Israel, at which bookswill be sold at a discount, alongside a variety
of literary events.