When I reported earlier this month that some six million people would be visiting book events in May I added the proviso that the real number would be a lot higher as I will have missed many “smaller” events in my snapshot.
As all eyes turn to the New York Book Expo, more than 6 million people are attending book fairs around the world this May
Take for example the 13th edition of the International Literary Festival of Pocos de Caldas, the Flipoços, that just wound up in Brazil.
They were expecting 70,000 but 85,000 turned out and in the nine days of the festival books to the value of R$1.2 million ($325,000) were sold.
The Flipoços 2019 has been set for April 27-May 5.
Flipoços is the first event of the Brazilian book fair season, with the Carioca Book Fair opening today through until May 20, and then the 6th Iguape Literary Festival next, running from May 24-27.
The bigger Brazilian book events are still to come, and dwarf the starter festivals mentioned here.
The biennial Rio International Book Fair sold over 2.5 million books at its last incarnation.
The Sao Paulo Comic Con last year had more visitors than New York, hitting 220,000. Small beer compared to the Sao Paulo International Book Fair that saw 800,000 turn out for the event.
Just a few more examples of the massive interest in all things book in countries where, or so conventional wisdom has it, nobody reads.