For publishers in India, 2017 was a great year an amazing range of books, new imprints, rewards and recognitions and prized acquisitions.
The year saw numerous autobiographies and biographies, and books related to business, commercial and mass market fiction, besides literary fiction, sports, self help, chik-lit and culinary works. There were a number of works by new and little-known authors too.
Penguin celebrated its 30th anniversary in India and HarperCollins India its 25th year. Bloomsbury India marked five years of its launch and the quarterly The Equator Line magazine completed five years.
"We had a great year at HarperCollins. It was our 25th anniversary year and was really special. We celebrated the occasion with newly designed special editions of our 25 most iconic titles, launched an imprint for business books Harper Business," says HarperCollins India CEO Ananth Padmanabhan.
"We also launched a brand new children's publishing program in November and a range of educational toys called FLAP (Fun a Learning and Play), the first by any publisher in India," he told PTI.
"We also won many awards; the best business book for Y V Reddy's 'Advice and Dissent', one of the first books in the new list, Anuk Ardupragasam's 'The Story of A Brief Marriage' won both the Shakti Bhatt Prize and the DSC South Asia Prize. Our books were on every shortlist in 2017. In short it has been a spectacular and rewarding year of books and awards," he adds.
"At Palimpsest, we look back on 2017 with satisfaction particularly for three books we put on our list: Sophie Judah's 'Victory Tea Estate', Balraj Khanna's iconic Partition narrative 'Line of Blood', and 'Demonetization in the Detail', a collection of essays edited by veteran journalist H K Dua," says Bhaskar Roy, CEO of Palimpsest Publishers.
Hemali Sodhi, senior vice president (marketing) and publisher (childrens) at Penguin Random House India, terms 2017 as an extraordinary year.
"We celebrated Penguin's 30th anniversary in India. To mark the occasion, we published special collector's editions across both the adult and children's divisions. Beautifully designed, the 30 books in the adult list and 10 books in the children's list featured some of our most beloved and popular titles published over the last 30 years. We also celebrated the 30th anniversary through the year with some very innovative and fun initiatives and campaigns," she says.
"It was also a wonderful year for our local publishing program - our range of books and authors consistently won awards, garnered acclaim and hit the bestseller charts. We were awarded the publisher of the year at the Tata Literature Live, and also won all the industry awards for book production," she adds.
"Our local publishing expanded significantly on the back of critically acclaimed books such as 'The Epic City: The World on the Streets of Calcutta' by Kushanava Choudhury, The Windfall' by Diksha Basu, 'Who Me, Poor?: How India's Youth are Living in Urban Poverty to Make it Big' by Gayatri Jayaraman, and 'Purveyors of Destiny: A Cultural Biography of the Indian Railways' by Arup K Chatterjee, among others," he says.
"Both our trade and academic businesses including the digital collections grew as we strengthened our presence in sales and marketing. We grew by a record 32 per cent outstripping the industry average by far," Sharma says.
According to Oxford University Press-India Managing Director Sivaramakrishnan V, the focus of OUP in 2017 was achieving learning outcomes, technology adopted quickly and content rewritten and redesigned to adapt to a variety of emerging media.
"Virtual and Augmented Reality was probably the most talked about trend of 2017. AR/VR technologies help learners experience and interact with digital learning objects to support their learning. Educators, who earlier had print or digital images/animations for teaching support, now can leverage these high-fidelity educational experiences to achieve better learning outcomes," he says.
Among the highlights of Pan Macmillan India's publishing list in 2017 were the 10th anniversary edition of Ramachandra Guha's "India After Gandhi"; "Awaken", the first book of Ashok Banker's Shakti trilogy; "The Demon of Cawnpore" by Jules Verne; "The Party Worker" by Omar Shahid Hamid; Chhimi Tenduf-La's "Loyal Stalkers"; "Mrs C Remembers" by Himanjali Sankar; and "Boy of Fire and Earth" by Sami Shah.
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