On Saturday, July, 13th, I was invited to be the guest of honour at Canada House for the Canadian High Commission’s BookFest, as part of the Evening Standard’s fantastic Get London Reading festival.
The High Commission opened up the amazing building for visitors, introducing them to Canadian children’s literature. I met hundreds of parents and young people, all eager to get reading.
When I was young, I really didn’t like reading. I found it hard and boring. I struggled to find any excitement in books. I never met an author until I was in university, and I’d never experienced any excitement around books. That’s why the Get London Reading event, and the Canadian High Commission event are so important; they signal to young people that reading can be interesting, exciting, and even social.
Far too often reading is a lonely, singular pursuit, but in brining people together to talk about and celebrate books, it makes a solitary activity social and engaging; exactly the mechanics we need to help young people embrace literacy and see its value.
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