The Hong Kong Book Fair runs from July 18 -24, 2012 at the HK Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai. Spoils!
Ghetto at the Center of the World is a nonfiction book about Chungking Mansion in TST (yup, of Wong Kar Wai’s Chungking Express, and the place Ani Ashekian was last seen before she disappeared), one of the places in HK I’m most fascinated with. Sort of place you hear about all the time but when you’re living in HK, there’s really not much reason to go there even though (or maybe because?) I pass by it all the time. I’ve been there once, for a curry; I’ve had a more extensive walk with a friend around Mirador Mansion, its less notorious sister, to get jazz tickets from the Filipino Musicians’ Union.
(The other place I’m really fascinated with is the Kowloon Walled City, because really, how can you not be.)
As usual, the book fair is in full swing even on the first day. The HKCEC takes a bit of time to get to; it’s not close to the train but it’s too close to bus or cab. Crowd control began from the train station already and the entrance and exit routes were really far apart!
530 exhibitors, 16 of them English, not counting the university presses. I really wanted to see local English publishers like Haven or Blacksmith represented but none of them were there, understandably and most likely because renting a booth, LIKE RENTING ANY SPACE IN HONG KONG, is crazy expensive.
ALSO: I did not know there were so many teenage vampire books. I wish I never knew.
ALSO ALSO: I stood next to two teenage boys reading Fifty Shades of Grey. Talk about expanding target demographics.