After four successful days of the latest in literature, comics, and audio productions, the Leipzig Book Fair opened its doors one last time on Sunday. With the most visitors to date, the organizers of the book fair can look back on a delightful event. Europe’s largest literary festival “Leipzig Liest” (“Leipzig reads”) took place parallel to the book fair. One of my fist stops in this festival was at the Moritzbastei, an old bastion that was built in the 16th century.
In the cellar of Moritzbastei
In the nostalgic cellar of the Moritzbastei the “Lange Leipziger Lesenacht” (“long night of reading”) gave young and upcoming authors the opportunity to read to a small audience. It was so special because you could enjoy this rare event until late into the night.
The first day of the Leipzig Book Fair came to an end with an anticipated award ceremony, honoring authors in three categories with a prize endowed in total with € 45,000.Amongst the nominees was 18 year-old Helene Hegemann with her highly debatted debut novel, that first caused an outcry of astonishment, which later turned to loud groans of dissapproval because parts of it were found to be plagiarised.
Girl showing the boys how to play Pokemon
The question of originality arised, leading to a nation-wide discussion of her book “Axolotl Roadkill”. To the delight of many, (and to the disappointment of some) Helene Hegemann did not win the prize, instead it was Georg Klein for his “Novel of Childhood”.
This morning at 9 AM the annual Leipzig Book Fair successfully kicked off four days dedicated solely to literature, new book arrivals, and other book-related events. More than 2000 publishers from 39 countries are here in Leipzig to present not only their newest publications, but also to take a look at the journey a book undergoes before it lands in our hands.
This year’s extra-program “Leipzig Liest“, which I have renamed the “LL“, invited 1500 authors from across the nation to come together and read texts to their fans in cafés and bars. Almost every café in the saxonian city can call itself a proud host to a reading event of the “LL“. Tonight promises many cool events at even cooler locations, like a reading with jazz at the jazz-bar Spizz and several readings at the renouned Moritzbastei.
This is a preview of Live from the Leipzig Book Fair.
Sometimes, you could get the impression that Germany is just one big, sloppy mess. Well, that’s what you might think if don’t know much German. Even if you’re just past beginner stage, though, you could start to wonder if Germany is as modern and secular as it first appears: every city seems to have a huge “mass” that it’s very proud of. Yes, that’s right: no German city, even in the generally protestant North, is complete without its Messe.