On Thursday 2nd March, World Book Day turns 20! That’s 20 years of celebrating children’s books and the joy that reading can bring.
To mark this special anniversary, we’ve teamed up with 20 top children’s authors, illustrators, publishers and journalists to bring you 20 reasons to celebrate children’s books.
Today, we’re delighted to welcome children’s author, Zana Fraillon. In 2016, her publisher Orion Children’s Books donated a brand new book for every copy sold of Zana’s most recent novel, The Bone Sparrow, to send to the refugee camp libraries we support in Kenya. Zana is here share her thoughts on why children’s books are so special:
For many children, a book is the first opportunity they will have to step outside their own experience and explore and discover the infinite possibilities that await them. Children’s books express what the world could be, rather than what the world is – they open our minds to dream and imagine that which is beyond us. Children’s books grow hope.
Zana Fraillon is a children’s author based in Melbourne, Australia. She has written two picture books for young children, a series for middle readers, and a fictitious book for older readers based on research and recounts of survivors of the Forgotten Generation. Her most recent book The Bone Sparrow follows a 10-year-old boy called Subhi who has lived his whole life in a refugee detention centre. It has been shortlisted for the Guardian children’s fiction prize 2016.
World Book Day is an annual celebration of authors. illustrators, books and reading. Every year on World Book Day, thousands of school children dress up as their favourite children’s book characters to raise money for us, so we can send more brand new books to libraries and schools in Africa. Last year they raised over £120,000 – enough to send 60,000 books to communities where children would otherwise have extremely limited opportunities to read! Learn more about World Book Day here.
Visit our World Book Day resources page for fundraising ideas, classroom resources and costume guides. Fundraise for us this World Book Day and share the joy of reading with children in communities where books are scarce.