Ten things you can relate to at the world’s biggest book sale – 4.5 million books at great discounts

The world’s biggest book sale is underway in Malaysia, and Rokal Daily has a great post this week highlighting “10 Things You Can Relate To If You’re A Big Bad Wolf Book Sale Junkie.”

Big Bad what?

For us in the west, finding great books is as easy as easy as popping to the local bookstore, ordering from an online bookstore, or downloading the ebook version.

Elsewhere in the world things aren’t quite that simple, Book fairs, street sales and mega-sales are where most people buy their books, and mega-sales don’t come bigger than the Big Bad Wolf non-stop 24/7 events, which this year have taken place in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and, right now, Malaysia.

In fact Malaysia, where the Big Bad Wolf sale originated, is the biggest, with a massive 4.5 million books to choose from, at crazy discounted prices. That’s up from a mere 4 million books available in 2016.

Last year the December bonanza had to be extended by two days, such was demand. Will this year’s 4.5 million books be enough to sate the appetite of Malaysians? We’ll find out in a couple of days.

The Big Bad Wolf sales began way back in 2009, when BookXcess founders Andrew Yap and Jacqueline Ng decided to hold a five day mega-sale in May of that year.

By then BookXcess had three successful years under its belt, buying remaindered English-language books from the west and selling them at great discounts.

The Malaysia Big Bad Wolf sales prove so successful  Yap and Ng expanded the project to Thailand, Indonesia and Sri Lanka, each time offering literally millions of books to eager buyers in 24/7 book sales.

And as this screenshot of BBW Malaysia 2017 shows,

or this from Sri Lanka,

these books may be remaindered, but that doesn’t mean they are obscure titles no-one will have heard of.

2017 was Sri Lanka’s first Big Bad Wolf event, offering a mere 1.5 million titles.

Big Bad Wolf first launched in Indonesia in 2016, and last year the sale was averaging 8,000 visitors per day during the week, rising to 25,000 visitors per day at weekends.

2017 was Thailand’s second Big Bad Wolf event. Check out a video here, where Andrew Yap reports that 95% of the 2 million titles at the 2016 Bangkok Big Bad Wolf event were sold, so 3 million were laid on this year.

It seems Thais, like their counterpart raeders in Malaysia, love books. Both the Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur International Book Fairs regularly get over 2 million visitors each year, so the popularity of the Big Bad Wolf sales should not be a total surprise.

Check out the Big Bad Wolf Bangkok video, then pop along to the 10 Things You Can Relate To If You’re A Big Bad Wolf Book Sale Junkie I opened this post with, and see your inner child-in-a-sweet-shop/author-in-a-bookstore self in the mirror.

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