Page-turners turn heads at book confab


Complete Berlinale coverage

BERLIN -- The third edition of the Books at Berlinale event, a joint effort between the Berlin International Film Festival and the Frankfurt International Bookfair, had record attendance again as international producers gathered Tuesday for the central pitching event Books and Breakfast.

From the 10 projects on offer, two were targeting a children's audience and three were dealing with terrorism of one form or another.

Max Kinnings' thriller novel "Baptism," presented by Julian Friedmann of Blake Friedmann Literary Agency, centers on an ultra-fundamentalist cult that threatens to drown hundreds of Londoners in the Tube. It seems to be written with the big screen in mind.

French publisher Editions Grasset & Fasquelle brought the drama "My Traitor" by Sori Chalandon to the session. The novel describes the friendship between a Parisian violin maker and a young IRA terrorist.

The most ambiguous project -- "The Weekend," from German novelist Bernhard Schlink -- came from Swiss publishing house Diogenes.

Schlink's novel, which will be published this year, centers on a German left-wing terrorist from the 1970s who tries to adjust to regular life and a changed society after 20 years in prison.

Stephen Daldry is now in production on a feature film adaptation of Schlink's best-seller "The Reader," about postwar Germany.