Michel Houellebecq (2013)

From the crowd milling around the stands a day before closing it was clear to see that the 20th International Book Festival Budapest is going to break all previous records. 63 thousand book lovers visited the exhibitor stands and attended one of the 380 cultural and professional programmes. All events of the festival were crowded, some of them was impossible to get in to. Long queues were formed before each book signing tables, especially where Budapest Grand Prize winner Michel Houellebecq, French Guest of Honour Writer, Portugal author dos Santos or János Háy, recently of Európa Publishing, were signing their books. The stand of Italy, Guest of Hour for the second time, offered an almost continuous series of programmes to visitors. The festival certainly deserved the title "international": many countries, such as France, Israel, Romania, Germany, Austria, Norway, Russia, the Scandinavian countries or Saudi Arabia, rightly proud of their culture were present with stands and guest writers. Turkey gave us a representative presentation in advance to its Guest of Honour debut in 2014.