Friday, 20 May 2022
BusinessBooks grow on trees in Turkish city promoting fair

Books grow on trees in Turkish city promoting fair

After a two-year break due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 12th edition of the Kocaeli Book Fair has returned along with its traditional publicity stunt: books on trees. Organizers of the fair hung some 5,000 books in transparent packs on ancient plane trees lining Cumhuriyet Boulevard of the northwestern Turkish province.

The event, which used to attract bookworms in the past, was canceled like other similar crowded gatherings but people were out on the boulevard, racing each other in close quarters again, as Turkey has scrapped most pandemic-related restrictions.

In a few hours, all the trees were once again empty due to the immense interest in the books, ranging from Turkish literature classics to beloved novels by writers from other countries.

Kocaeli Metropolitan Municipality organizes the book fair, which will start on Saturday and will run until May 22. Municipality officials say they expect widespread interest in the fair itself, which will host 315 publishers and 673 events, including book signings and conferences under this year’s theme , poetry.

Readers were eager to grab at least one book from the trees. Some climbed up while others jumped to catch one. Others improvised means to reach high-hanging books, like using scrub brushes with long handles. Others placed their feet on each other’s shoulders to get a book.

Hakan Karagücük said he had traveled from Başiskele district to central Kocaeli with his wife and son in the early hours of Friday to grab a book. “I managed to pick five books. I was aiming for a book by (famous Turkish thinker) Cemil Meriç, but it was too high,” he told Anadolu Agency (AA). “I love books and will visit the book fair too. Books are like a second soul for people,” he said.

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