Culture & Edu

Children's books publishers try to divine the future

English.news.cn   2011-11-18 11:06:26 FeedbackPrintRSS

By Yang Guang

BEIJING, Nov. 18 (Xinhuanet) -- Representatives of more than 20 Chinese children's books publishing houses met with their foreign counterparts to examine market trends, such as e-books and international cooperation, at a seminar in Beijing recently.

E-books dominated much of the conversation at the event organized by Random House Children's Books and the Beijing International Book Fair's managing office.

Random House Children's Books president Chip Gibson says the U.S. market has changed more in the past three years than in the previous 30 years he has been in the industry.

But the news wasn't necessarily bad, he says.

"Despite competition from TV, the Internet and other social media, reading remains an important cultural and intellectual pursuit in the U.S.."

The U.S. children's books market generates about 3.6 billion U.S. dollarsĀ in annual sales. Random House sells about 125 million books a year, Gibson says.

E-books accounted for 1 percent of the market in 2010 and will account for about 5 percent this year.

"Random House is keen to establish relationships with a range of children's books publishers in China and to learn about the market," Gibson says.

He says he's looking for fun Chinese books that focus on three themes - dim sum, dragons and fireworks - to appeal to American readers.

The publisher has introduced many Chinese titles overseas in recent years, Gibson says. These include China Reader by Su Shuyang, Riverside Talks by Zhao Qizheng and Luis Palau, The Man Who Changed China by Robert Lawrence Kuhn and a travel guide for visitors to the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Many bestsellers in China originated from Random House companies, he says. These include Spencer Johnson's Who Moved My Cheese and Richard Branson's Losing My Virginity.

(Source: China Daily)

Editor: Chen Zhi
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