There may be less than a week left in July and the weather may have turned decidedly yucky, but there are still plenty of bookish reasons to be happy this month! If you’re feeling gloomy then take a butchers at the book-related things that are helping to put a smile on my face so far…
♥ The Summer Reading Challenge. This is something that you might not be aware of if you a) don’t have children or b) don’t work in a library. I am currently fully immersed in this years Summer Reading Challenge (or SRC as us library types refer to it…)
Basically every year libraries run a summer reading scheme for children over the holidays. The aim is to encourage children to carry on reading throughout the school holidays. It’s run by The Reading Agency and the idea centres around children reading a total of six library books over the six weeks. Every time they have read two books they visit the library and tell staff all about them. They then get various goodies including scratch and sniff stickers, wall-charts, wristbands and a range of other very cool stuff. Then when the challenge is complete and they have read all six books they are awarded with a certificate and medal.
This years theme is ‘Record Breakers’ and it’s shaping up to be quite popular. I enjoy working in a library when the SRC is on because I absolutely LOVE hearing the kids talk about the books they’ve read. It’s like they are being mini-reviewers and that is just great. Some children aren’t too keen on telling you about the books and others love telling you in great detail exactly what happened on EVERY SINGLE PAGE. I just adore hearing their views on the books they’ve read and seeing their enthusiasm for reading. If you have little ones then I can’t urge you enough to get them signed up to this, it really is a great idea (although I’m slightly bias…)
♥ Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee. I read To Kill A Mockingbird about 5 years ago and I completely loved it. It’s one of those books that I feel deserved the title of ‘classic’ and I can’t recommend it enough. Naturally I was really excited when I heard about Harper Lee’s new release all these years after To Kill A Mockingbird. However, whilst I am extremely looking forward to reading Go Set A Watchman, I have been loving the attention that the book has received. Seeing posters, special book clubs, hearing it being discussed on the radio, the TV and having customers asking about it at the library… I love it when a book receives attention and gets everyone talking and excited about its release. I feel as though this doesn’t happen often enough and it makes me really happy when a book gets the recognition that it deserves. It reminds me of when the later Harry Potter books were released and everyone would go crazy. WE NEED TO DO THIS MORE OFTEN.
♥ Bookouture. As I’m sure you know I love Bookouture, but this July they have really been spoiling us with their releases. I’m talking The Girls Guide to Getting Hitched by Sophie Hart, Fairytale Beginnings by Holly Martin, Scandalous Lies by Nigel May, Pleasure Island by Anna Lou Weatherley, and Summer Flings and Dancing Dreams by Sue Watson.
♥ Christmas in July. One of my favourite bloggers-in-the-whole-world-ever Sophie over at Reviewed The Book has been running a feature called Christmas in July and it’s been FANTASTIC! I’m all for celebrating Christmas all year round and she has been reviewing some brilliant Christmas titles over on her blog. Whilst I have been loving Sophie’s Christmassy reviews, I’m also hearing more and more about some of the Christmas novels we’re going to be reading this year and I am LOVING the sound of them! I’m especially excited about How To Stuff Up Christmas by Rosie Blake (released 12th November), Tinsel and Terriers (released 5th November), Christmas Ever After by Sarah Morgan (released October 8th) and The Christmas Cafe by Amanda Prowse (released 22nd October). Bring on the mince pies…