for the uninitiated, the Big Bad Wolf book fair is an annual event where people can buy cheap books. I only got to know of this event last year where it was held at the South City Plaza. The books were amazingly cheap, of course you have to trawl through thousands of books to make your selection and I spent something like RM50. this year it was a bigger event and it ran almost the whole of december. The venue is bigger as well, Mines Exhibition centre. I really go crazy. There were 3 million books. On my first visit I spent five hours. It was an overwhelming experience. Really like “rusa masuk kampung”. I did not even know where to start. The trouble with sales like this you tend to buy more than you should. On my second visit four days ago, a day before the fair ended, I was more prepared. I knew what I am looking for. But then, it was a first time experience for the wife and inevitably she amassed most of the cook books and we ended spending more than RM500! Well, at least we can tell the Inland revenue people that we deserved the income tax rebate! What I do not understand, why is it this kind of book fair was not held much earlier. After all, this remainder book business has been part and parcel of book fairs all over the world for many years.
Judging from the number of people thronging the Big Bad woolf, the notion that Malaysian do not read books should be dispelled. Thousands attended the fair, millions ringgit worth of books were bought. In my family alone, we bought almost a hundred books. It is just that books in the normal bookshop are too expensive, people would think triple times before buying them. Imagine the book on Broadcast Design, normally costs RM200 costs only RM30 at the fair. No wonder people we buying books by trunkloads! If the price of books are cheap enough, people would haven o qualms about buying them. Maybe it is about time the industry rethink the hefty cut given to the distributors that I believe artificially push the rice of books.