For those of you who haven’t heard, today is the UNESCO International Day of the Book (also known as World Book Day), chosen in honor of Shakespeare and Cervantes, who both died on April 23, 1616. (It is also the anniversary of Shakespeare’s birthday.) In that same vein, tonight is World Book Night, and this year I’ll be a book giver!
World Book Night started last April in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and comes to the United States this year. On World Book Night, volunteers (like me!) all over the country hand out free paperback books on the streets of their local cities. I’m very excited to be a part of this amazing program, and I’ll be writing a follow-up article about my experience soon. I’m sure I’ll love it because what could be better than giving away free books? You’re spreading joy and knowledge (two of my favorite things) at the same time.
So if a smiling stranger hands you a book today—Go to it! Say thanks and enjoy. While it’s too late to sign up as a book giver this year, I hope that many of you will be inspired to choose to be a giver next year.
Happy World Book Day!