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World Book Day

Posted by on March 7, 2013

Society of Biology book awardsKaren Patel is in charge of awards and grants at the Society of Biology

When was the last time you read a book? If you’re struggling to remember then you might be part of the 25% of UK adults who has not read a book in the past six months. To celebrate World Book Day, why not pick up a book today!

World Book Day is a celebration of reading and of everyone involved in producing books. Over 100 countries across the world take part in the day. Here in the UK, World Book Day aims to encourage children to get excited about reading and the joys of getting lost in a new story.

This is the 16th year of the event and so you might remember participating in the day by dressing up as a character from your favourite book. If you have young children then I’m sure finding the perfect fancy dress costume was a weekend panic.

Millions of book tokens are given out in nurseries, primary schools and secondary schools so children can own their own book – they can choose from eight special titles or get a £1 discount off other titles.

Last month I read a poll by reading charity Booktrust which revealed only one in eight fathers is the main reader in the family. This was a bit of a shock but thinking back it was always my mother who took me to the library after school and encouraged me to read the classics.  To change this, the Booktrust have launched a Get Dads Reading campaign. Supported by bestselling author James Patterson, of detective Alex Cross fame, hopefully this campaign will succeed in getting more fathers to spend time reading with their children.  And what better way to start, than on World Book Day.

Getting engrossed in fiction can be easy enough; textbooks on the other hand can be a struggle. To celebrate outstanding new books we have launched three awards for biosciences books. The Society of Biology Book Awards will recognise outstanding undergraduate and postgraduate textbooks and accessible, engaging and informative general interest biology books. The awards will be presented during Biology Week 2013.

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