The Taipei International Book Exhibition (TIBE) is now on at the Taipei World Trade Centre. The theme of last year's exhibition was Russia and this year it is Australia. The exhibition is a major event for Asian publishers and there is a huge range of books on display.
I was keen to see Tony Wheeler and lo and behold minutes after entering the hall I saw him being interviewed along with his wife Maureen at the Australian Pavillion. Other Australian authors attending the event include Markus Zusak, author of The Book Thief, and illustrator Shaun Tan.
Lonely Planet now publishes Chinese-language editions of some of its guidebooks. I am sure Tony and Maureen Wheeler's visit to Taiwan will help raise the company's profile here.
Shieh Jhy-wey (謝志偉) is pictured above in the Textbox. He is doing a rap in Hoklo Taiwanese (when he is not rapping he serves as the Minister for the GIO). This innovation (the Textbox not Shieh's rapping) was bought to Taipei from the Frankfurt Book Fair. It allows readers to get up close to an author. The author is in a glass box while the audience listens in via headphones.
I only bought one book at the exhibition and it was a great bargain. It is at the bottom left-hand corner of the photo above. It is called 省錢環島遊 or Money Saving Guide Around Taiwan and cost just NT$100. It recommends lots of free and cheap things to do around Taiwan with maps and descriptions.
Hall 2 of the TWTC is dedicated to anime and manga (comics or graphic novels). It was very lively with plenty of people buying up the latest manga. Hall 3 is for children's books. There is plenty to see and do there.
The exhibition continues at the Taipei World Trade Centre until Monday 18 February. More information is available at the Taipei International Book Exhibition website.
*more photos in the 2008 Taipei Book Fair photoset at flickr.