Avid readers around the country will be flocking to their local independent bookshops for discussion groups, author events and lunches, to celebrate National Reading Group Day, (NRGD), today, Saturday 25th June.
The day is part of Independent Booksellers Week (IBW) and demonstrates what the ‘indies’ do best - creating and supporting their local community. Reading groups have enjoyed a resurgence in recent years, encouraged by local independent bookshops who host, and in many cases run, local reading groups. Many are well-established, while others are being launched on NRGD itself.
As well as author-led talks and discussion groups, activities include competitions and even a world record attempt.
A visit by Dawn French to a reading group is being offered as first prize in a major national competition, launched tomorrow, Saturday. The competition is open to all reading groups in the UK who are invited to enter by explaining, in 30 words or less, why Dawn should come to their reading group. The competition celebrates the paperback publication this month of Dawn’s No.1 bestseller, A Tiny Bit Marvellous. More information is available at www.readinggroups.org/dawnfrench.
More unusual initiatives include the launch of a world record attempt for the largest ever reading group. The attempt by The Big Green Bookshop, Wood Green, London, takes place on 30th July and will be made by joining people nationwide using social networking sites, a website forum, Skype and video links. An online discussion will take place from 4pm–8pm, with a central forum set up for people to share their views.
In addition, a new series of The TV Book Club Summer Read starts this weekend on More4, giving reading groups the opportunity to read along with the series. The programme is offering the chance for a reading group to watch filming on 19th July – more information is available at www.readinggroups.org/tvbookclub
• National Reading Group Day is part of Independent Booksellers Week, an annual celebration of the ‘the indies’ around the country, run by The Booksellers Association.
• The Booksellers Association is working in partnership with The Reading Agency’s Reading Groups for Everyone initiative, a central database and resource on reading groups.