Booksellers with high expectations for Porto Book Fair


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Booksellers, publishers and booksellers are confident of the commercial success of the 2023 edition of the Porto Book Fair, which kicks off on Friday, anticipating, despite the crisis, the same number of visitors and sales as last year.

Before the official opening of the doors, the tranquillity of the Palácio Cristal was replaced by the noise of the books that, little by little, began to fill the shelves of the 130 counters that wanted to be present at the Porto Book Fair.

Among the booksellers, publishers and booksellers that Lusa spoke to, there was confidence that this year the crisis, inflation and other financial concerns will have no impact on sales, which should remain in line with the revenues achieved in the previous edition.

“Expectations are always high for Porto. In reality, we haven’t noticed this decrease at the fairs. In fact, with the pandemic, what has happened is that sales have increased,” said Duarte Pereira, from Livraria Snob.

The bookseller even said that during these events, a new type of reader seems to emerge who takes advantage of the fair not only for the discounts, but also to get to know “all the diversity of publications in Portugal”, but not only, as revealed by the presence of Spanish, French and Brazilian publishers in the 2023 edition.

In this context, this year the bookseller brought a selection of books in English and Ukrainian, seeking to respond to new audiences.

Also for Cátia Monteiro, from Livraria Flâneur, the expectation is to maintain sales, in line with recent years, which “have gone very well”.

“I don’t think they’ll beat the 2022 figures. Considering this past year, it seems difficult to us that the results will be better than previous years. I hope they’ll at least be as good as 2022,” he added.

An opinion shared by Francisco Melo, from Book Cover Publishing, who anticipates a good turnout from readers. For the man responsible for publishing classics of Portuguese and foreign literature, the good weather that is anticipated and the space where the event is held are always additional factors of attraction, which makes him believe that sales should be identical to those recorded in 2022.

Fernando Pais Moreira, owner of the Angels Formula bookshop, doesn’t expect 2023 to bring any surprises either. With an average price of five euros per book, his stall is always in demand, precisely because it’s cheaper than buying a new book.

There are books for all tastes, he says, and from different eras, just like the customers.

In this edition, as usual, Fernando hopes to receive a visit from an almost 90-year-old man who, despite having more than 250,000 books, returns to the Crystal Palace every year to grow his collection.

On the booksellers’ side, not everyone is optimistic. A few doors down, Isabel Costa, from, admits to being wary of this year’s edition, due to the increased financial worries and burdens that most Portuguese have faced this year.

Nevertheless, for the fair, he also brought rarities that can fetch up to 600 euros.

The Porto Book Fair returns to the Palácio de Cristal Gardens from Friday, with a program that includes more than 110 activities – including talks, concerts, film screenings and children’s activities, celebrating the writer and journalist Manuel António Pina.

Until September 10, 108 publishers, booksellers and booksellers, spread over 130 renovated pavilions, will populate Avenida da Tílias, in an investment of around 650 thousand euros. The 2022 edition saw more than 155,000 visitors.

Iris Lavan
Iris Lavan
With a background as a consultant in the medical industry, Iris Lavan brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to Portugal Pulse. Iris also runs a company in Tel Aviv offering marketing, business development, content creation and public relations services. She holds a degree in economics and management, giving her a solid grounding in business strategy and financial planning. Iris' commitment to Portugal Pulse is reflected not only in her consulting career, but also in her impact on the Portugale media landscape in Israel. She was an interviewer for Hadshot Portugal חדשות פורטוגל, a media outlet that broadcasts news about Portugal in Hebrew, where she provided valuable information on current affairs, healthcare and the economy. Since July 2023, Iris has also been part of the Portugal Pulse team.

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