Kolkata will see a host of literary gems in the new year — even before the annual Kolkata book fair
Eminent authors like Ben Okri, Lord Meghnad Desai, Christine Manfield, Vir Sanghvi, Bharati Pradhan, Meera Syal, Salil Tripathi and Bollywood hero Shatrughan Sinha will be the star attractions at a literary festival to be organised in January 2016. These famous personalities will also be releasing their latest books at the festival.
Man Booker Prize winner and one of the foremost modern African authors Ben Okri will launch his latest novel “Age of Magic” at the festival. “The Famished Road,” considered a modern classic, won Okri the Booker prize in 1991.
Lord Meghnad Desai, who opened an academy for Economics in Mumbai this year will release his latest book, “Hubris: Why Economics Failed to Predict the Crisis and How to Avoid the Next One”, in Kolkata during the festival.
Okri said, “It is with great pleasure that I am coming to the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival. As you all know, I feel India to be a kind of home for me. It is a mysterious feeling and I have felt it since the first day I visited many years ago.
“This is my first time at the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival, and I am looking forward to the sharing of ideas and to the customary warmth with which India receives its visitors. I shall be talking about my new novel, ‘The Age of Magic’, will be sharing some thoughts on the mystery of storytelling, and will be reading from my poetry. I am looking forward to our literary and spiritual encounters.”
The forthcoming 7th edition of the fest will see participation from Australia, Israel, Scotland, Italy, Nigeria, Portugal as well as England, France, Germany, Pakistan, Bhutan and other countries.
The festival will also be commemorating the 125th birth anniversary of English crime novelist Agatha Christie.
“A variety of events and literary initiatives have been curated specially as a tribute to Agatha Christie. These include the launch of book “A For Arsenic: The Poisons of Agatha Christie” by Kathryn Harkup in association with Britain's leading crime writing festival, Bloody Scotland,” said festival director Anjum Katyal.
This time around, the literary extravaganza will begin with the all-India premiere of National Award winning director Aparna Sen’s film “Saari Raat” based on playwright Badal Sircar's play. Other new features are a poetry cafe and heritage walks. The festival will begin on January 14 and conclude on January 17.