A Bookstore at GALF


GALF 2015 (1)
The Tara Book store at GALF

“His hands were weak and shaking from carrying far too many books from the bookshop. It was the best feeling.”
― Joseph Gordon-LevittThe Tiny Book of Tiny Stories, Vol. 1

Since last year the GALF has come up with book stalls. This could be the status of many participants.

A quote from my favourite GALF participant. “I didn’t go to bookshops to buy. That’s a little bourgeois. I went because they were civilized places. It made me happy there were people who sat down and wrote and wrote and wrote and there were other people who devoted their lives to making those words into books. It was lovely. Like standing in the middle of civilization.”
― Jerry PintoEm and The Big Hoom

I remember as a very young child being told that libraries and bookstores were quiet places where noice was not allowed. At that time I had an inkling that adults were wrong, now I know it for sure, book stores pulsed with sounds, it is just that they were not noisy. The books hummed, the collective noise that they made like riding on a large where the motor’s ready thrum and tickle vibrated below one’s sneakers ignorable until you listened and then omnipresent and relentless, the sound that carried you forward. Each book brimmed with noises it wanted to make inside your head the moment you opened it. only the shut covers prevented it shouting ideas, impulses, proverbs and plots into the sterile silence.

When I pick a book at flipkart or any chain book store, I don’t hear the hum maybe because the so called music and the customer information is killing it all. when authors do book signs at chain bookstores or the malls it is as though they rather not acknowledge their on individuality but more importantly he is stabbing the individual bookstores in the back.

At the GALF is of course the book festival, individual booksellers and authors all together, this year there was topping on the dessert…Tara Books.

Each book meticulously handcrafted the books were extraordinary. The store was started by an German Lady whose name I forget, because she could not find the books that she wanted her children to read. She has collected folk tales from various places, illustrations of various folk art and sometimes even old storytelling aids have been re-invented.

The language used in the books is very simple.

Art form used is Ghond, Madhubani and other ethnic forms.

Materials are handmade paper, cloth and illustrated with natural dyes.

My annual budget for the book festival is 5000/Rs. I do not allow myself spend more than that, guess what I blew all my money in this stall. Those of you are going towards Chennai, do visit them at

Plot no.9 CGE colony,Thiruvanmiyur

Chennai 600041

For the rest of us its www.tarabooks.com

My older daughter, told me something when we entered a book store at a Bangalore mall, the shop was dominated by t-shirts, mugs and soft toys, “Amma, if this was a college a bookstore, I would find another college, for now lets walk out and go to a real bookstore.”

GALF 2014
GALF 2014
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