Debutant Author Hosts Out-of-the-Box Book Launch, Impresses Guests
QUEEN'S ROAD: The average book launch in Bengaluru is a quiet affair; a small crowd, in a quiet place, listening to the author talk about the book and maybe read some part of it aloud. Then there’s tea and biscuits, and everybody buys a copy and gets it signed, and then goes back home. Sometimes celebrities stop by to give a few sound bytes. For a few avid readers, these are events to connect with others of their ilk, gossip a bit, meet an author, but then that is all there is it.
However, with so many books being launched every week, it’s slowly becoming important for authors — especially new ones — to get more creative with the way they choose to launch their books, in order to really make an impression and stand out amongst the hoards of contemporaries.
The launch of The Debt Collector’s Due — a crime thriller by local author Adhirath Sethi — pushed the envelop a bit. It was not organised in a book store or a sanctified reading club but at a restaurant. And going completely against the norms of traditional proceedings, Sethi arranged a theme-based event which revolved around crime. As he explained to the guests, “It’s hard to do a crime-based launch; I couldn’t just commit a crime here. No one would like that much.”
With actual murders ruled out, Sethi hired professional entertainers who specialise in a very unique form of entertainment — murder mysteries.
“How many of you have ever wanted to be a detective?” the guests were asked. They then got to solving a murder mystery through a series of puzzles and video clips.
Within moments of the game starting, the party — which was strictly adults-only — had transformed into what resembled a throng of excited schoolchildren, as tables competed against each other to solve the puzzles the quickest and get the chocolates that were given out to the two winning tables at the end of every round.
The whole room was buzzing with excitement, and even the most sedate old gentlemen were shouting out answers excitedly at the top of their voices.
The game lasted for about an hour, after which the launch went back to the more familiar book-launch territory. After some refreshments, guests made their way out to pick up copies of the book and get them signed by Sethi.
The author added at the end that he would now let the book do the talking and create some buzz within the minds of his readers.
The Debt Collector’s Due is in stores and whether it will capture the imagination of the readers, remains to be seen.