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Big Bad Wolf brings a million books to town on July 25

July 11, 2019

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ANDREW Yap speaks at the event on Wednesday while (right) a pop-up book on display features Deep Space Nine, the iconic Star Trek space station.
—Fahim Siddiqi / White Star
ANDREW Yap speaks at the event on Wednesday while (right) a pop-up book on display features Deep Space Nine, the iconic Star Trek space station. —Fahim Siddiqi / White Star

KARACHI: Changing the world, one book at a time, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale — one of the world’s largest book sales — will open its doors to the people of Karachi on July 25 and will go on till Aug 5 at the Expo Centre (hall 5).

The sale, which promises to run 24 hours for 11 days, boasts of having more than a million books for readers and potential buyers with big discounts on the retail price.

Following its success in Lahore, the bookworms of Karachi will be able to enjoy non-stop access to world-class literature.

‘Education is one of the best ways to change the world’

The idea behind the sale came from a Malaysian couple, Andrew Yap and his wife Jacqueline, who started Big Bad Wolf as a reading advocacy group. Back in 2006, they used to run a bookstore together and then an opportunity came along and they could not refuse.

The sale has been a landmark event in Kuala Lumpur since 2009 and is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary with a series of book sales across the nation. They have previously taken the sale to countries including Thailand, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Taiwan, the UAE, Korea and Myanmar.

Speaking at a press conference at a local hotel on Wednesday, Mr Yap said that the reason the sale runs for 24 hours is so that everyone has a chance to look at or purchase books. One of their goals, he added, was to make books accessible and affordable across the world as education is one of the best ways to change the world.

“In KL [Kuala Lumpur], we noticed that the queues were often too long. People would travel a great distance to get to the book sale but would miss out. Sometimes we would have to pull down the shutters,” he said, adding that it just made sense to keep the sale open for 24 hours straight.

Some of the books at the display included Nelson Mandela’s biography with a foreword by former US president Barack Obama (Rs1,040). There were books on the Harry Potter series such as a behind the scenes of Fantastic Beasts (Rs1,110) and another one which contained Potterhead memorabilia like a letter from Lily Potter to Sirius Black, Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, Marvel comics, which cost Rs1,730 to Rs4,040 and above. There was also a Star Wars pop-up book for Rs2,310.

Zoha, a guest at the press conference, said that she was interested in buying anything by J.K. Rowling about Harry Potter and The Wizarding World, while her friend said that she was more interested in buying baby books for her nephew.

Published in Dawn, July 11th, 2019