Children’s literature finds new shelf space in India

Indian writing for children is going places.

Consider this: the book Elephants Never Forget by Anushka Ravishankar has sold 2.52 lakh copies worldwide. Do!, by Gita Wolf, has sold 1.11 lakh copies. These are just the bestsellers. A few other titles published by Tara Books, one of the more recognised names in book publishing abroad, has seen sales cross the 50,000 mark.

The Chennai-based publisher’s books have been translated into 19 languages, including Hebrew, Afrikaans and Castillan. “Our direct sales in North America and the UK in the last few years have gone from strength to strength,” says Maegan Chadwick-Dobson, communications manager at Tara Books.

Tulika Publishers is another publisher that has expanded its base abroad. It publishes in English and nine Indian languages and has sold rights for over 66 titles to foreign publishers, all of whom have registered increased sales. “The books are moving really well,” says Aneesha Vijaykumar, who handles marketing and promotions at Tulika. “People are looking for books for children from India.
They say the books are very Indianised; the culture is of great interest.”

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