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Jobs’ biography on the road to making history

Four days after Apple icon Steve Jobs’ biography hit the Indian market, bookstore owners claim they are witnessing the making of history.

books Updated: Oct 29, 2011 20:00 IST

Four days after Apple icon Steve Jobs’ biography hit the Indian market, bookstore owners claim they are witnessing the making of history.

Written by journalist Walter Isaacson, copies of Steve Jobs: A Biography have been flying off the shelves during the Diwali holidays and publishers are already reprinting more installments.

“This is the first time that a non-fiction book, priced as high as Rs799, has recorded such high sales,” said Sivaraman Balakrishnan, marketing manager at Crossword, which has sold 400 copies of the biography in the past four days, and expects the frenzy to last for another month.

Balakrishnan claims that the discounts offered by online bookstores have not affected their sales, and the store has ordered 500 more copies from the distributors. “This is the kind of book people would like to own, and I don’t expect it to ever go off the shelf,” he added.

Strand Bookstall at Fort, which sold 500 copies of the book on Friday, was sold out by 11am on Saturday morning, and will not get more stock before Tuesday. “We have had to disappoint several customers who walked in for the book today,” said Strand’s manager PM Shenvi.

“A lot of hype has been created around Steve Jobs ever since his death, and the book has received a response that can be compared only to popular fiction books like Harry Potter,” said Ajay Joshi, a merchandiser at Oxford, which sold all its 35 copies of the book in just two hours on the day of its release.

Another interesting phenomenon, say bookstore owners, is that those pouring in to buy the book are not necessarily avid readers.

“I am not much of a reader, but I am hugely inspired by Jobs’ life, and through the book, want to know more about him and his perspective on various things,” said Aviraj Saluja, 26, a photographer from Andheri (W) who pre-ordered the book on Flipkart and received it on Tuesday. “This is a book I would always want to keep with me.”