In between the lines and the pages
This weekend, Copenhagen will be celebrating the tenth anniversary of Bogforum, the city’s feast of reading and culture. Marking the milestone of the first decade of this event’s history, the fair has been relocated to the modern multifunctional centre, Bella Center.
Although the financial crisis has severely affected the publishing industry, the organisers that gave birth to this event are still confident in its visibility and its success, offering 157 publishing house stalls, where you can meet authors, listen to readings, get involved in discussions and take part in workshops (for all ages) − some of which are available in English.
Particular attention this year is devoted to the rapidly growing digital book market, giving visitors the chance to experience the latest devices. And then there is the small matter of 50,000 kroner, which will once again be awarded to the winner of the best literary debut of the year.
Ken Follett will present his new literary work, Winter’s World, which was published in September. The novel is the second of a trilogy, The Century, an ambitious project to follow the interlocking lives of five families spread over the entire 20th century – another series of books coat-tailing the success of the medieval saga The Pillars of the Earth. Follett will be at hand to talk about the accuracy of the historical and topographical research, his linear and balanced writing style, and how he strives to catch the reader’s attention by accelerating the narrative rhythm to leave them breathless. Following The Fall of the Giants, Winter’s World resumes in the 1930s, tackling Nazism and the Cold War along the way.
Scenen; Fri 15:00
Robbert Goddard will talk about Fault Line (published in Danish as Ulven fra Beograd), inviting those present to join the book’s protagonist, Jonathan Kellaway, as he breaks the barriers of time and space, travellng through “white-capped moonscapes” characterised by “undefinable captivating resonance”.
Bogcaféen; Fri 13:00
German author Eugen Ruge will discuss In Zeiten des abnehmenden Lichts (In Times of Diminishing Light), the winner of the German Book Prize 2011, shedding light on his own personal family history, which helped shape his book. Ruge, driven on by the experience of his father Wolfgang, a known Marxist historian, who escaped Nazi tyranny to end up in the Siberian gulag, pursued scientific studies, obtaining a PhD in physics in East Germany. And his scientific background is evident in the language he uses: essential, accurate and unambiguous, just like a mathematical formula.
Hvid Scene; Sat 11:15
Aminatta Forna, who is half Scottish, half Sierra Leonean, drew on a painful family history to write The memory of love (published in Danish as Til minde om kærligheden). The imprisonment and then death of her father, however, doesn’t obscure her love for her homeland, which she depicts colourfully as a country where the past offers redemption to heal the present.
Hvid Scene; Sat 15:15
Martin Jensen & James Forrester
A discussion about historical novels led by a Dane, Martin Jensen, and an Englishman, James Forrester, in which human heroism and cowardice will both be put under the microscope.
C2-045 Rød Scene; Sat 15:30 – Hvid Scene; Sun 11:15
Israeli author Ilan Pappé will discuss his factual book The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine (Den etniske udrensning af Palæstina) – an attempt to present a balanced view of the age-old conflict. Nevertheless, there’s always plenty to debate about this issue, so it could get interesting.
Faglig Scene; Fri 16:15
The young British authoress will discuss Sister (published in Danish as Søster) and Afterwards (Efter branden), and most particularly the bonds of sisterhood and motherhood that underpin her books.
Bog Caféen; Fri 16:00
Bella Center, Center Boulevard 5, Cph S; starts Fri, ends Sun, open daily 10:00-18:00; tickets: adults 110kr, under-12s 55kr, other concessions available; www.bogforum.dk