When I first heard about World Book Night I thought it sounded like a great idea. That is until I realised that the 1,000,000 book giveaway was limited to only 25 titles. And each World Book Nighter would only be able to select a single book to give away to 48 people. While my out and out favourite book on the list of titles would be David Mitchell’s ‘Cloud Atlas,’ I would be hard pushed to think of nearly fifty people who would enjoy it. In the run up to WBN on Saturday there have been plenty more issues raised about the event.
Nicola Morgan, author of YA novel wasted, has posted her own doubts about the night along with her idea for an alternative that will better benefit authors, publishers and independent bookshops as well as the individuals receiving a free book. She explains ‘Our World Book Night’ thusly:
One day between now and next Saturday (March 5th), let’s each of us buy a book, preferably from an actual bookshop, or direct from a publisher. Any book. Write inside it: “Given in the spirit of World Book Night, March 5th 2011 and bought from [insert name of shop] – please enjoy and tell people about it.” And give it to someone. Anyone. A friend or stranger, a library or school or doctor’s surgery or anything.
Then go home, and enjoy whatever you’re reading yourself.
What I think is great about this idea is that, as Morgan says in her post, everyone wins. Which is why I will be supporting ‘Our World Book Night.’ I hope you will too. Head over to the comments on Nicola Morgan’s OWBN post and pledge your support. Then buy a book and give it away.
I’m off to decide what to buy and who to give it to/where to leave it.