Delhi, and for the first time Mumbai, witnessed two gala events from organisers of the Zee Jaipur Literature Festival. The JLF made some exciting announcements on both the occasions. In January, young readers are set for a treat with Anthony Horowitz, creator of the Alex Rider Series, and Julia Donaldson whose modern classics, The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child, have taken countless children on a splendid journey will grace JLF.

The brilliant theoretical physicist Lisa Randall will also feature in a fascinating discussion that challenges the stereotypes of gender. Among speakers will be historian, Harvard professor and author of The Dawn Watch, Joseph Conradin, Peter Bergen, the author of Manhunt, one of the few to have interviewed Osama bin Laden and the first journalist to gain access into Abbottabad as well as Suki Kim, the only writer ever to have lived undercover in North Korea and the author of New York Times bestselling literary nonfiction Without You, There Is No Us: Undercover Among the Sons of North Korea’s Elite.

The Delhi curtain raiser event was held at Taj Man Singh Hotel, with a mesmerizing evening of classical music show. Speaking at the event, JLF curtor Sanjay Roy recalled the glorious past of the festival and told the audience how Namita Gokhale and William Dalrymple took the initiative of organising the festival. He also said that at this edition there will be a special sitting arrangement for the delegates at the Baithak hall. The former Afghanistan President, Hamid Karzai will also be participating in the festival.

For the first time, the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival had a preview tour in Mumbai, where Festival Co-Directors Namita Gokhale and William Dalrymple and Producer Sanjoy K Roy walked down memory lane and gave the audience a glimpse of the making of the world’s largest free literature festival. It was followed by a reading from Dalrymple’s The White Mughals with renditions by vocalist Vidya Shah.