Book fairs offer attendees discounted books of all kinds including paperbacks, hardcover books, educational or skill-building books, and interactive or digital products. Some book fairs are thematic and provide information based on the theme. Some fairs are tied to a trade show that gives publishers and authors networking opportunities.
Book fairs that are held for schools are usually fundraisers and often have contests that encourage creativity in the children in attendance. Some of these activities build skills such as group work, reading and writing. Many times, the companies that organize the fair have the work of the winners of these contests published and even sold at other book fairs across the country.
When tied to a theme, a book fair is a standalone event targeted at a particular convention or group of people. For example, a teacher's book fair provides an array of materials and books that are relevant to teachers and classrooms. Trade shows that are associated with book fairs are a way to focus a particular industry on networking or ways to grow business, collaborate or see advances that are being made.
Book fairs are big events and are held in a space large enough to accommodate a wide variety of books and a large number of people. Vendors sometimes pay a fee to rent floor space and sometimes pay a percentage of their profit to the organizer. Fair events include talks, book signings, author events and raffles.