03 March 2017

World Book Day

Yesterday was World Book Day. I read about it in the bath, catching up with the Review section of last week's Guardian, in a little piece by Francesca Simon, author of the Horrible Henry books - she wrote a book specially for the event, as did nine other authors. The books sell for £1, and millions of children can choose, at no cost, which of the books to take home. For some children, this is the first book of their very own.

She wrote, in the article, about an experience she had:
I once did an author event in a bookshop, and a child came up to me afterwards. “Are we allowed to touch the books?” he asked. I realised he’d never been inside a bookshop, and this strange environment was as alien to him as stepping into a betting shop would be for me. A book token is a passport: the 15m tokens that will be distributed among all school pupils in the UK and Ireland will enable them to go to any bookshop to choose a free book. For many, this will be their very first book – around 15% of UK children have no books of their own. It’s a shocking and depressing statistic.
It's an important initiative. And a chance to dress up as a character from a book!
The science department of Camborne Science and International Academy do Lord of the Rings (via)


Plum Cox said...

It's such a brilliant initiative, isn't it? Despite my DD's not being short of a book or two, they love the idea that millions of children are participating in one big book event and cherish their voucher / choosing their book / usually going to on to buy another book too.
I also help that as many schools as possible show children local libraries too - you don't need to own books (lovely as that is!) in order to be able to access them - at least so long as we are able to enjoy our lovely libraries without them being closed due to funding cuts.

patty a. said...

In a world where books are becoming less important to many, I think it is wonderful to put books in the hands of children. I know the librarians are happy when books are checked out instead of DVD's! They have told me they feel like they are running a video store instead of a library.