Nominate books to fall in love with

Which books so special they could encourage people who are not regular readers, to fall in love with reading? That’s the question posed by the organisers of World Book Night 2013.

Last year more than 70,000 books were delivered free to the hardest-to reach potential readers – people in 110 prisons and young offenders institutes; care homes; hospitals and homeless shelters.I got involved in the 2011 event and enjoyed the experience immensely even though I made the mistake of opting to distribute one of the thickest (and heaviest) books from that year’s list – Margaret Attwood’s The Blind Assassin. I got to take books to some parent and toddlers groups and to some homes for elderly people and a chance to talk about why I love to read and how much of a difference its made to my life.

Nominations are now open for titles that will be distributed as part of next year’s World Book Night. The 100 most nominated titles will be reviewed by a selection committee of journalists, authors, publishers and librarians and a final list of  25 titles chosen.

You can choose any genre of book – fiction or non-fiction, crime, thrillers, romance, sagas, sci-fi, fantasy, classics, literature, poetry, biography, young adult. The only rule is that it can’t be a title or an author that’s already featured in 2012 or 2011.  Just register on the website at to take part.

I haven’t made my selection yet but here are some of my initial thoughts:

  • Three Cups of Tea by Greg Morteson (one man’s mission to build schools in rural Pakistan and Afghanistan)
  • Jane Eyre (my favourite Bronte novel)
  • Silas Marner  by George Eliot (such a touching story)
  • Mosquito Coast
  • Girl with a Pearl Earring

So what books would you choose? 

About BookerTalk

What do you need to know about me? 1. I'm from Wales which is one of the countries in the UK and must never be confused with England. 2. My life has always revolved around the written and spoken word. I worked as a journalist for nine years then in international corporate communications 3. My tastes in books are eclectic. I love realism and hate science fiction and science fantasy. 4. I am trying to broaden my reading horizons geographically by reading more books in translation

Posted on July 25, 2012, in Book Reviews and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. And if an author makes up his own quotes when writing about a famous person … should his entire book be deemed not worth reading?
    I don’t know much about the Mortenson book and since I haven’t read it, I haven’t followed the controversy that closely. I just wanted to mention it to give you an opportunity to make up your own mind. That said, I doubt that the judges who decides which books to use for World Book Night would use this book when at least parts of it are questioned.


  2. I don’t think you should nominate the Greg Mortenson book – there has been a lot of controversy about it. I haven’t read the book but as I understood it, he has embellished heavily on what he actually achieved and I think there were some issues with the money as well – I don’t think all of them went where they were supposed to…


    • I checked out some info on Mortenson. It seems a lot of allegations that haven’t been proven (or disproven to be fair). He was the subject of a class action in Montana but at least two of the claimants dropped out (one said she hadn’t even read the book). The Attorney General said there wasn’t any evidence of criminal action though funds had been used for the wrong reasons.
      But your comment raises an interesting question – and I wonder how far the question extends. So for example, if there are allegations (allegations not proof) that Author A used the plot of Author B and then Author A wins a prize – should we not read it or tell friends about it? Does knowing there is some doubt about authenticity of Mortenson’s book change my response to it – difficult one that. it doesn’t change how I felt about it at the time which was that it was an incredible story. Now I know there are question marks, the impact is certainly reduced. Hmm still thinking about this one


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