As you probably know, World Book Day and Night has come and gone. 'A Millions Reasons to Read' was the slogan used to promote ... books. One million books were given out FREE to 20,000 givers who distributed or maybe still distributing the books. Well, there's nothing wrong with a free book, is there?
The concept sprang from The Book Industry Conference in 2009. Jaimie Byng of Canongate books is said to have started the idea which was later steered by a large committee including Random House, Penguin, Harper-Collins, Faber and Faber, Clays ... et al. So it's no surprise then, that giving out Free books might have meant cheap advertising. I'm not wanting to be sour about the promotion, clearly the book suppliers want to create awareness, especially in this techno-e-reader era but I found that the interest shown when giving out the books was quite amazing. The giving and receiving process somehow seemed to make people feel special. When I offered the FREE book to one lady, she asked, 'How much is it?' not believing something was actually for free. Some people seemed to mist over at the sight of a book. I could almost see their thoughts formulating ... a book? to read? Then a smile ... and once they'd accepted it, I could tell that reading one might be a pleasant experience.
World Book Day and Night encouraged a lot of interest, from large gathering for readings in Trafalgar Square, author readings and promotions in libraries to small reading groups; people getting together creating community spirit. And there's nothing wrong with that, is there?
I have 10 books left: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon. If you would like a copy, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will post it to you. [FREE!]
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time is about an autistic boy who finds a neighbour's murdered dog in the garden and investigates the mystery. Viewing everyday events and emotions from the character's perspective, there is much to learn from Mark Haddon's novel. Humbling and enlightening, a delightful read.