New Delhi: A debut book by Pope Francis, memoirs by Ruskin Bond, Pranab Mukherjee, Subhash Chandra and Rishi Kapoor, biographies of Bhimsen Joshi, Shashi Kapoor and Sania Mirza and novels by Jhumpa Lahiri, Aravind Adiga and Jeffrey Archer are some of the big titles on the publishing list this year.
Besides, a number of works on politics, sports, films and entertainment, fashion, cuisine, business and academics and scores of novels and children’s books will also be published.
The long publishing list notwithstanding, Hachette India MD Thomas Abraham sees a couple of tough years for the book industry because of trade conditions where brick and mortar stores continue to struggle for survival and online stores continue deep discounting to gain share.
"That said, bestsellers are bigger than they were before, so we should have some upside from that. However that is not a healthy trend - if a market is to survive only by its bestsellers. Neither for the market nor for a country's culture, because it means that is the reading habit dwindling," Abraham said.
A number of autobiographies are slated to be published this year Nelson Mandela's "Dare Not Linger" (Macmillan); media mogul Subhash Chandra's "The Z Factor: the Wrong Man at the Right Time" (HarperCollins); Ruskin Bond's "First and Last Loves: An Autobiography" (Speaking Tiger) and ones by explosive South African batsman A B de Villiers (Macmillan) and actor Rishi Kapoor (HarperCollins). Rupa will come out with the second volume of President Mukherjee’s memoir. The Turbulent Years (1980-96) besides autobiographies of Congress leader Margaret Alva and S K Mishra’s (Flying in High Winds. Penguin Random House will publish memoirs of Super 30 founder Anand Kumar (Anand Kumar: The Man behind Super 30) and Emraan Hashmi (Emraan Hashmi Memoirs, co-authored by Bilal Siddiqi).
Biographies include Memoirs of a Singer’s Son: Bhimsen Joshi, My Father by Raghavendra Bhimsen Joshi (translated by Shirish Chindhade and published by Oxford); ones on Biocon CMD Kiran Mazumdar Shaw (by Seema Singh, HarperCollins), tennis superstar Sania Mirza (HarperCollins), Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi (HarperCollins), Bollywood legend Shashi Kapoor (by Aseem Chhabra, Rupa).
Roli Books will publish Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography authored by its founder-publisher Pramod Kapoor and a biography on Sachin Tendulkar’s master coach Ramakant Achrekar (Author: Kunal Purandare).
In The Name of God is Mercy, published by Pan Macmillan, the Pope discusses mercy and in addition sums up other ideas - reconciliation, the closeness of god - that comprise the heart of his papacy.
Archer’s Cometh The Hour, also published by Pan Macmillan, has Bombay on its cover. This sixth book in the Clifton Chronicles has a major Indian character.
Adiga’s third novel Selection Day will be published by Fourth Estate. The Booker prize winner’s novel is set in the world of cricket in Mumbai.
Other notable books include Speaking Tiger’s Iconic Encounters: Profiles of People I Have Known by Kuldip Nayar and Looking for Miss Sargam, a collection of short stories by Shubha Mudgal; The Last Mile, the second title in David Baldacci’s Amos Decker crime series published by Pan Macmillan; A Different Kind of Daughter: The Girl Who Hid From the Taliban in Plain Sight (Pan Macmillan) by Pakistan’s No. 1 at squash player Maria Toorpakai.
Penguin Random House has among other titles Jhumpa Lahiri’s In Other Words, The Unsuitable Boy by Karan Johar; Reel World: On Location in Kollywood by Anand Pandian; The Indian Accent Restaurant Cookbook by Manish Mehrotra; Ero Text by Sudeep Sen; Boy Meets Girl by Durjoy Datta; Pakistan: Between Mosque and Military by Husain Haqqani; The Bones of Grace by Bangladeshi writer Tahmima Anam; The Rise and Fall of Nations by Ruchir Sharma and Genesis by Siddhartha Mukherjee.
Among some books related to fashion are The Masaba Print (Rupa) by designer Masaba Gupta with Aastha Atray Banan; Block Printed Textiles of India: Imprints of Culture? (Niyogi) by Eiluned Edwards, reader in Global Cultures of Textiles and Dress at Nottingham Trent University, UK, and Textile and Costumes at the Jaipur Court (Niyogi) by textile designer and historian Rahul Jain.
Oxford’s other titles for this year include The New Xenophobia by Tabish Khair; four volumes of The Historian and Her Craft by Romila Thapar; Literary Activism: A Collection of Perspectives, edited by Amit Chaudhuri; Guardians of God: Insider the Religious Mind of the Pakistani Taliban by Mona Kanwal Sheikh; An Uncivil Woman: Critical Readings of Ismat Chugtai by Rakshanda Jalil; three novellas of late Assamese writer Indira Goswami and The Fire of Aoling by Anurag Mahanta, translated by Manjeet Baruah from the Assamese novel Aaulingar Zui.
Speaking Tiger will also publish Mridula Koshy’s novel Bicycle Dreaming; River of Flesh & Other Stories: The Prostitute in Indian Fiction edited by Ruchira Gupta; Bullets & Bylines: From the Frontlines of Kabul, Delhi, Damascus and Beyond? by journalist Shyam Bhatia; Dissent: The Fight for Freedom, edited by Ashok Vajpeyi, essays by Romila Thapar, Nayantara Sahgal, Pratap Bhanu Mehta, a drawing by Krishen Khanna, among others; and ?Murder in Mahim, a novella by Jerry Pinto.
Pan Macmillan’s also has on its publishing list books like Do You Know Any Good Boys by Meeti Shroff-Shah; Shusaku Endo’s prize-winning, controversial classic Silence; Trumpet by Jackie Kay with an introduction by Ali Smith; The Discovery of France by Graham Robbs with an Introduction by Colm Toibin....