Big Bad Wolf is back in town! | Sunday Observer

Big Bad Wolf is back in town!

All generations of people can find their reading preference at the Sale (Pic: Sarath Peiris )
All generations of people can find their reading preference at the Sale (Pic: Sarath Peiris )

The highly anticipated Big Bad Wolf – the world’s biggest book sale is ready to set its paws in the island for the third consecutive year, at the Sri Lanka Exhibition and Convention Centre (SLECC), Colombo, with a 50 to 90 percent off recommended retail price on all English books.

The sale will be open from October 18 to 28, from 10am to 10pm on weekdays and operate 24 hours non-stop over the weekends starting from 10am on Friday and ending at 10pm on Sunday with over 1.5 million books up for grabs.

Speaking at a press conference, Big Bad Wolf (BBW) Books Founder, Jacqueline Ng recalled how she, with her husband Andrew Yap, driven by passion first launched the BBW Book Sale in 2009 as a warehouse sale in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, providing an exciting array of excess books from international distributors.

“Coming from a very ordinary family, when I was a child I never had books in my home. My parents couldn’t afford to buy extra books and reading was not their habit. Books were a rare sight in my home, and I never had the luxury of possessing story books or other reading materials.

“Therefore, as a child I have never read books, and though I was a bright student at school my IQ level was quite weak, so was my imagination. I remember when I was a kid sometimes I would wonder how my friends at school wrote essays and answered questions so easily, whereas I didn’t have a clue about them. Later I realized that they got that talent through reading books.

“When we decided to set up Big Bad Wolf in 2009 as a warehouse sale unit in Kuala Lumpur, one objective was to keep the books available at an affordable price, so that everybody would get an equal opportunity to read,” said Jacqueline Ng.

The affordable prices and easy availability of the books proved to be a huge attraction, and due to Jacqueline’s noble cause, the BBW Sale soon turned into a landmark event in Malaysia. Offering brand new English books at discounts as high as 50 to 90 percent recommended retail price, BBW Sale features a wide range of books across all genres including fiction, non-fiction, best-sellers, literature, business books, cookbooks, art and design, coffee table books, young adult fiction, as well as an extensive collection of children’s books.

Apart from Malaysia and Sri Lanka, BBW has successfully expanded its footprint across cities in Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Myanmar, Taiwan and Korea. All generations of people can find their reading preference at the Sale and be transported into the sheer diversity of titles and genres.

“We started travelling around the world in 2016 and our main mission is to instil the reading habit by providing readers access to affordable, quality books. Books have the power to inspire and empower people with knowledge and we are providing the platform through the BBW Sale. In the past decade, we have seen many young readers who have bought their first English book at the BBW Book Sale and they have now developed into well-read young folks. The Sale has earned a loyal following across the world being a reading advocacy organization and we are delighted to bring the Sale to Colombo for the third consecutive time with a wider range of books and brand-new titles,” Jacqueline added.

The BBW Book Sale Colombo 2019 is brought to Sri Lanka by ProRead Lanka (PVT) LTD, an organization focused on bridging the gap between knowledge accessibility and learning opportunities. The company was formed to provide people with greater access to information and books at affordable prices, spreading the good word, ‘Knowledge to All’.

“At both previous sales, we managed to pull off two incredible events due to the absolute fervour and eagerness of Sri Lankan readers. We are thankful to the BBW management for coming down here to Sri Lanka despite the unfortunate crisis situation we had in the recent past. This year again, we invite people of all ages to visit the BBW Book Sale as it has something new and exciting to offer every one,” said BBW Sri Lanka Partner and Director of ProRead Lanka (PVT) Ltd, Nishan Wasalathanthri.

The highlight this year would be the magical Book titles also known as the Augmented Reality (AR) Books for children, a preschool learning series and bedtime stories that use cutting-edge technology to revolutionize reading for the next generation, allowing children to sing, learn and read. Parents can discover popular titles such as ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ and ‘Let’s Learn Alphabet ABC’ among the 13 titles to be rolled out during the Sale this year. Suitable for children from age 1 to 5, Magical books create an immersive and interactive reading experience.

The BBW book sale is the ultimate chance for a book collector to obtain rare and limited edition titles. Staying true to make books accessible to everyone including the underprivileged, BBW Books also believes in giving back to the community and through its CSR arm, Red Readerhood (RRH), the Sale will be collaborating with the Centre of Hope.

“This year onwards, we are collaborating with the Centre of Hope, a charity organization that operates a care home and educational centre at four main districts in, Ampara, Batticaloa, Colombo and Mullativu as we hope to make a difference by helping to uplift educational opportunities in Sri Lanka. The BBW Book sale would kick-start this initiative by pledging 500 books, and visitors can purchase and donate books towards this worthy cause during the Sale at the designated area,” Jacqueline said.

The Big Bad Wolf Book Sale 2019 in Colombo is set to become an annual event for book lovers in the country. The Ministry of Education backs this grand spectacle for all readers in Sri Lanka as its endgame is to help raise the readership count as well as English proficiency by making good books affordable and accessible. The BBW Sale favours the idea of expanding curiosity and sharing knowledge. “Our ultimate goal is to expand mini-versions of BBW Book Sale in every district of the country. Considering the actual size of the BBW original book sale in any other country, here in Sri Lanka we cannot find a space to match that. It’s 25 times bigger than the space we have in SLECC and we hope the up and coming Port City project may have sufficient space to accommodate full swing, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale,” Nishan added.

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