London Book Fair 2022: Ben Okri, Diane Ewen, Afra Atiq, and Illustrators shine on Day 2 

Sarfraz Ali 08:40 PM | 7 Apr, 2022
London Book Fair 2022: Ben Okri, Diane Ewen, Afra Atiq, and Illustrators shine on Day 2 

LONDON – Illustration, sustainability, and the legacy of the pandemic on publishing have been among the key themes discussed as attendees and exhibitors return to Olympia for day two of the London Book Fair 2022.

Nielsen Book Data revealed their research on reading trends during the pandemic, with fiction, and cosy crime in particular, on the rise, and this was reflected by the appearance of a number of crime and thriller writers in the day’s seminar programme.

Audible bestselling author Slater discussed writing thrillers for audio, while acclaimed crime writers Peter James, Louise Candlish and Kate Ruby appeared on a panel exploring writing gripping mysteries for the page and the screen.

Popular crime fiction authors Ross and JD Kirk also appeared on the Author HQ stage to talk about their writing journeys with Kindle Direct and their advice for aspiring writers.

Andy Ventris, Director of The London Book Fair, said: “If the first day of this year’s London Book Fair was defined by a sense of excitement, today has provided a feeling of familiarity and connection. It has been brilliant to walk the halls of Olympia seeing exhibitors and attendees spot old connections and share their latest stories. The purpose of LBF has always been to serve as a global hub for business, expertise and networking for the publishing industry, and it has been heartening to see that happening in person.

“Our phenomenal seminar programme has also continued to engage and impress, including a gripping keynote by Ben Okri on the role of art in times of crisis, an illustration showcase from Diane Ewen, Killed Covers and more at our Illustrators Afternoon, and enlightening sessions on sustainable publishing. Nielsen BookData’s talk on sales trends since the last LBF showed that fiction is on the rise, crime titles remain as popular as ever, and print is persevering even in a digital age, and we are proud to have a programme that reflects these trends, tackling the most important issues facing the industry today.”

LBF22 – Highlights from Day 2:

Booker Prize-winning novelist and poet Ben Okri delivered today’s keynote session, appearing in conversation with journalist and editor Sarah Shaffi to discuss the role of art in times of crisis.

Market Focus Sharjah Author of the Day Afra Atiq appeared in conversation with poet, playwright and author Joelle Taylor discussing her work as an Emirati poet, spoken word artist, and PhD candidate. Afra also spoke with Dubai Abulhoul at an event at the Sharjah Book Authority Pavilion where the pair discussed the impact Emirati female writers are having on the country’s literary scene.  

The popular Illustrators’ Afternoon returned to Olympia with a bang this year, with Illustrator of the Fair Diane Ewen speaking to Macmillan Children’s Books’ Chris Inns about her career, what she hopes to communicate through her illustrations and the importance of representation in children’s books. The afternoon continued within the Association of Illustrators masterclass and the return of the creatives behind the killed Covers 2019 event, which this year took the form of The Cover Design Wheel of Fortune.

LBF’s Sustainability Afternoon saw panels discussing the challenges and possibilities of green publishing, with representatives from The UN, International Publishers Association, The Lancet, Elsevier, Publishers Association UK and Taylor & Francis sharing how publishers can do more to make the book world more sustainable.

Nielsen Book Data held a popular session reviewing books sales and trends since the pandemic, with key themes including the resurgence of print sales, the popularity of manga and cosy crime, and the return of the bestselling celebrity memoir.

Emily Rose Clifton, Scott Hulme and K Bailey Obazee were announced as the winners of the innovative New Futures Programme, each receiving funding to open a bookshop, white jacaranda Books was highly commended. The ground-breaking new initiative from and The Booksellers Association promotes the opening of new independent bookshops from underrepresented communities across the UK.

The winners of the 2022 Trailblazer Awards were also celebrated in a networking event, with an introduction by David Roche. Recognising some of the most exciting young talents under the age of 30 in the publishing industry, this year’s winners are Elle Brenton-Rounding (Bonnier Books UK), Hayley Steed (Madeleine Milburn Literary, TV & Film Agency), Marianne Tatepo (Vintage, Square Peg, Penguin Random House), Srishti Kadu (Taylor & Francis) and Talitha Quadri (Freelance Editor and Proofreader, co-founder Selkie Publications CIC).

Andrei Kurkov, President of PEN Ukraine spoke to Monocle’s Georgina Godwin about dialogues on war, in relation to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine. Award-winning author Pajtim Stavoci also appeared, discussing love, war and migration on the eve of the publication of his new novel Bella.

Sarfraz Ali
Sarfraz Ali

Sarfraz Ali is working as Editor Web for Daily Pakistan. He earned a postgraduate degree in Mass Communication from IUB and diploma in International Print Journalism from Thomson Foundation UK. He regularly writes on ...


ISLAMABAD – Pakistani rupee finally ended its losing streak against US dollar on Tuesday, gaining Rs4.43 after massive depreciation over the last week.

During the intra-day trading, the rupee was hovering at 266.75 with an appreciation of around 1.07 percent as talks between Pakistan and IMF underway for a stalled bailout programme.

Earlier on Monday, the rupee plunged by Rs7 and the greenback touched all-time high of Rs272. Last week, the local currency dropped by Rs24.54 in the interbank market – the largest single-day depreciation in more than two decades.

Finance experts linked the rupee’s recovery to exporters offloading some of their proceeds as remittances and export continued days after dollar cap was removed.

The country of over 220 million is facing a worst economic crisis with the forex reserved held by the country’s central bank remaining at critical $3.68 billion which were not enough to cover a month's import.

KARACHI – The price of a single tola of 24-karat gold in Pakistan is Rs205,900 on Tuesday. The price of 10 grams of 24k gold was recorded at Rs176,530.

Likewise, 10 grams of 22k gold were being traded for Rs162,500 while a single tola of 22-karat gold was being sold at Rs 182,100.

Note: The gold rate in Pakistan is fluctuating according to the international market so the price is never been fixed. The below rates are provided by local gold markets and Sarafa Markets of different cities.

City Gold Silver
Lahore PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Karachi PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Islamabad PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Peshawar PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Quetta PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Sialkot PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Attock PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Gujranwala PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Jehlum PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Multan PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Bahawalpur PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Gujrat PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Nawabshah PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Chakwal PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Hyderabad PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Nowshehra PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Sargodha PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Faisalabad PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370
Mirpur PKR 205,900 PKR 2,370


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