HCM City’s Book Street celebrates 5th birthday hinh anh 1A series of cultural and art programmes will be organised at the HCM City Book Street  to celebrate the street’s 5th birthday on January 9. (Photo courtesy of HCM City Book Street)

HCM City (VNA) - A series of cultural and art programmes are taking place at the HCM City Book Street on Nguyen Van Binh Street in District 1 to celebrate the street’s 5th anniversary, and promote the reading culture among the community.

A number of book exhibitions and readings are being held at the venue from January 9 to 18.

Rare books and bestsellers by Vietnamese and foreign writers are on display, along with discounts offered to many children's books and comics, released by the country’s leading publishers such as Kim Dong, Phuong Nam and Nha Nam.

Book readings will feature veteran and young writers who will talk about their writing.

Visitors and readers are encouraged to send photos and writing about their feelings and views about the street, to the event’s organiser, the HCM City Book Street Company.

HCM City Book Street has become a cultural destination for tourists after five years of running, said Le Hoang, Director of the HCM City Book Street Company, who is also deputy chairman of the Vietnam Publishing House Association.

City authorities spent a year preparing for book street, including collecting opinions from people, publishers, educators and cultural experts, finding a venue, and calling for support from publishers, distributors and businesses, he said.

Opened in 2016, the book street features dozens of book stalls of more than 25 publishers. More than 3.5 million books on different topics, including 57,000 new titles, have been sold, and 11.5 million people have visited the street.

Several hundred book-signing events and cultural exchange programmes and exhibitions, attracting leading domestic and foreign publishers, distributors and agencies, have been organised on the street.

Nguyen Minh Nhut, Director of the Tre (Youth) Publishing House, said promoting reading culture is necessary. Book streets should be developed as tourist sites to serve both residents and visitors. 

In July, the HCM City Book Fair for Children with the theme “Open up the Book – Build the Dream” on the street attracted nearly 6,000 people. 

The six-day event offered more than 10,000 copies of books by local and foreign authors, mostly literature and comics, from 20 local publishers and distributors.

It included an exhibition of 40 paintings of Vietnamese children's thoughts about life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Book readings and reviews, and a kids’ corner, were also included./.