Just ahead of this year's fair, organizers have announced the winners of the 2022 London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards, which highlight some of the top practitioners in global publishing. In addition, the Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Hiroshi Hayakawa from Japan.
Hayakawa has worked at independent family publisher Hayakawa Publishing Japan since 1965. Early in his career, as v-p of the company, he managed foreign rights, acquiring a number of modern classics, including The Godfather, Jaws, Flowers for Algernon and Early Autumn. Upon becoming president, he brought a number of seminal titles to the Japanese market, including A Brief History of Time, Jurassic Park, Thinking Fast and Slow and The Remains of the Day. Over his 30 years as president, he has maintained Hayakawa Publishing’s prestigious literary fiction lists, while also being a vocal advocate for science fiction, mysteries and nonfiction titles, with his dedication to crime fiction earning him the Mystery Writers of America’s Ellery Queen Award in 1998.
For his part, Hayakawa said, “I was most surprised and deeply honored by the London Book Fair’s consideration. My selection for such a prestigious award is very humbling, especially when I look at the All Star list of prior recipients. This honor is not mine alone, it belongs to all the members of Hayakawa Publishing who have supported me all these years. I do look forward to being able to visit London before too long.”
Andy Ventris, director of the London Book Fair noted, "For decades, Hiroshi has been a cornerstone of international publishing, bringing stories and voices from around the world to Japanese readers. His passion for the written word, and his championing of genre titles in particular, has changed the literary landscape of Japan and helped build the prestige of many of the most celebrated authors of our day.”
The excellence award-winner include Findaway, from the U.S., won Audiobook Publisher of the Year; Cărturești from Bucharest, Romania, was named Bookstore of the Year; Karadi Path Education Co. in India won the Educational Learning Resources Award; the Inclusivity in Publishing Award, supported by the U.K. Publishers Association, was given to Hachette UK; the Ghana Library Authority was honored with the Library of the Year Award; the Literary Translation Initiative Award went to Editora Trinta Zero Nove of Mozambique; and finally, Nora Mercurio, from Suhrkamp Verlag in Berlin, received the Rights Professional Award.