Thursday, 6 January 2011

The 1,000,000 book give-away

Life as a blogger can be strange. Sometimes, you're brimming over with ideas - which you may or may not manage to convert to a post - and at other times inspirations seems miles away. Most of the time you can manage to sustain things under their own momentum, even if you have to force yourself to post now and again.

Occasionally, though, you see something and you just have to post. This post from the other day was one such example.Tonight's post is another.

Regular visitors will know that I enjoy reading and regularly post book reviews here. Reading opens the mind to new ideas and fresh worlds. It provides a place of escape and a window on the world, a place of reflection and illumination.

Every year World Book Day (March 3rd in the UK) seeks to encourage kids to find the pleasures of reading and to provide access to their own books, primarily through activities in Schools. 

This year, the following Saturday has been designated World Book Night with an ambitious project to distribute 1,000,000 books to adults across the country and coverage on BBC2. Not only that but individual applications are being invited to be a distributor of these books. 20,000 people will have the task (privilege) of passing on the pleasure of books.

25 titles will be given away; from Alan Bennett's A Life Like Other People's to Ben MacIntyre's Agent ZigZag, Philip Pullman's Northern Lights to Yann Martell's Life of Pi. The complete shortlist covers a wide range of genres and organisers hope that books will be introduced to people who wouldn't consider themselves as readers.

I know of various towns and citries which have trialed such projects themselves - but the scale and ambition of this scheme is to be much admired. I've decided I'm going to apply to be a book giver. If you too love books and are intrigued by the project, why don't you too?


P.S. Internationally, World Book Day is promoted by UNESCO and occurs on April 23rd.

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