Book fair returns to Antwerp with readings, workshops and concerts


The largest annual book fair in the Benelux is back in Antwerp with a giant book market, readings by local and international authors and live radio recordings

British focus

The largest annual book fair in the Benelux kicks off in the halls of Antwerp Expo this weekend. More than 100 publishers and retailers spread out over 20,000 square metres will offer fiction, non-fiction and children’s books in multiple languages.

It’s a giant book market, but it’s also a chance to hear local and international authors read from and discuss their latest work. Just as British cinema was celebrated at this month’s Ghent Film Festival, British authors are well represented this year at Boekenbeurs. Novelist Robert Harris (pictured), who shot to fame in the 1990s with Fatherland, will discuss his new book Dictator, which completes his trilogy of tales surrounding the Roman orator Cicero.

Kate Mosse will also make an appearance to talk about her Languedoc trilogy, which she launched in 2005 with the book Labyrinth, a best-seller across the planet and later a TV miniseries. Santa Montefiore, meanwhile, who is as famous for being a socialite as she is for writing love stories, will talk about her new book, The Beekeeper’s Daughter.

Also at Boekenbeurs are live radio recordings, workshops, concerts and a huge number of lectures covering a variety of topics, including literature, society, history and ecology. As the event coincides with the autumn school holidays, there is an emphasis on children’s literature, which will be kicked off with a show called Volwassenen toegelaten (Adults Allowed). Flemish children’s book author Dimitri Leue invites several other  authors to read, sing and celebrate the joys of fiction.

Boekenbeurs also hosts several theme days, including Goed Gevoel, with a focus on health and wellness, and a Literary Nocturne for the night-time crowd. 

31 October to 11 November at Antwerp Expo