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Andhra Pradesh - Vijayawada Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Securing the word

G. V. Ramana Rao



A Harry Potter poster.

VIJAYAWADA: Why do warehouses that stock books need special security? It must be exam papers that are being protected. Wrong answer. It is not examination time and the stocks in the warehouse are just books. These books must be valuable like ballot boxes, if the excitement being created by the publisher is any indication.

Penguin Books India has hired Group-4 Falck Security paying top dollars to guard the warehouses in Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam from 6 p.m. on July 15 to 4.30 a.m. on July 16 to protect the book referred to only by code name HP-6. Cartons of these books will be unloaded at the warehouses late on July 15 by special delivery. A different strategy is being used for the twin cities where the number of distributors and retailers is more. The cartons of these valuable commodities will be delivered directly to the distributors and retailers at 4.30 a.m. on July 16.

The code name HP-6 actually stands for `Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince', the sixth of J. K. Rowling's bestsellers.

Higher than Everest!

The book must be really precious for the publishers to go through all this trouble and additional expenditure. HP-5 broke several records in the United Kingdom. On the first day of sale, `Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix' sold at the rate of 21 books per second. If all those books sold in the UK on the first day were stacked up, the pile would be 12 times higher than Mount Everest, according to a promotional brochure.

The Penguin India distributor, D.Ashok Kumar, said Bloomsbury Publishing was taking a tremendous amount of trouble to ensure that the book was made available to Harry Potter fans all over the world at the same time. The second and important reason was to keep piracy at bay. Several fans who had made reservation of their copies would get them from 7 a.m. itself.

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