New Delhi: 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.
“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 (children’s) 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.
According to Bloomsbury Publishing India Vice President (Sales & Marketing) Yogesh Sharma, 2017 was the best since Bloomsbury was launched five years ago in India.
“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% 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.
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.