HarperCollins marks 'biggest ever' retail showcase with Slater, Baddiel and Chevalier

HarperCollins marks 'biggest ever' retail showcase with Slater, Baddiel and Chevalier

HarperCollins welcomed 240 people to its “biggest ever” ‘Big Book’ event aimed at retailers, featuring authors such as David Baddiel, Tracy Chevalier and Nigel Slater.

In the eighth year of the event, a number of authors and HarperCollins staff mingled with booksellers such as W H Smith's new head of books, Pete Selby, and Asda books buying manager Henderson at the showcase in the Ham Yard Hotel in London’s Covent Garden on Thursday evening (2nd May).

As well as Baddiel, Chevalier and Slater, there were 12 writers in attendance in total including US thriller author Linwood Barclay, Hollywood screenwriter David Koepp and Kate Elizabeth Russell, debut author of "21st Century LolitaMy Dark Vanessa pre-empted by 4th Estate in a six-figure deal last year. Other authors included writer Marcus Wareing, debut author Amrou Al-Kadhi, Artemis Fowl writer Eoin Colfer, debut novelist Beth Morrey, thriller writer Caroline Corcoran along with Starfell series author Dominique Valente.

© Toby Madden

In a 25-minute film played in the hotel’s basement cinema, a number of editors and sales staff discussed the books they were most excited to be publishing over the coming year, with clips from the authors themselves including former Prime Minister David Cameron, whose long-awaited memoir is due to be published by William Collins in the autumn.

Slater also discussed his two books focused around seasonable vegetables, Greenfeast: Spring, Summer, due later this month, followed by Greenfeast: Autumn, Winter.

“It’s very special to have you all here, you are the people who make this stuff work,” Charlie Redmayne, HarperCollins UK c.e.o. said in a speech preceding the film in the hotel cinema highlighting upcoming books. “I wanted to thank you because you’re the people who put these authors books in people’s hands and make the magic that is reading. The year to come is pretty much the same again only better.”

Redmayne said he believed it was the biggest ever ‘Big Book' event. There were 240 guests in total with around 120 from retailers at the annual event which first launched in 2012.