Art Not For Sale
It’s a mystery why some literary prizes capture the popular imagination while others don’t. If only the prize money was a consideration, Pakistani debut novelist H.M. Naqvi’s Home Boy should be a top seller now that he’s won the Jaipur litfest’s sponsor DSC’s bumper $50,000 book prize. But apart from the 100 copies he sold in Jaipur, his climb into bestseller lists is less than satisfactory. His publisher HarperCollins ordered a modest reprint of 3,000 copies, which has yet to be sold out. In contrast, when Aravind Adiga won the Booker for The White Tiger, the same publisher ordered a reprint of 25,000 at one go. A gross underestimate, as it turned out—it sold a record 2,50,000 copies.