April 23 is a symbolic date for world literature. It is both the birth and death day of Shakespeare, as well as the death day of Cervantes, the great Spanish novelist. It is in their honour that UNESCO appointed it the international day of the book and that we choose it to celebrate World Book Night.
April 23 also marks the city of Barcelona’s celebration of St George’s Day. St George is the patron saint of Catalonia as well as England and traditionally, to celebrate this day, Spanish gentlemen gave their ladies roses and the ladies returned the favour with a book. Considering the rich literary history of this day, it seemed more than fitting that April 23 should be chosen as the day of celebrating reading and the giving of books!
I started out giving away the books I volunteered to hand out, Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers, and already most are gone. I work with many military folks, many of them very busy and work hard many hours a day. I’m glad I have the opportunity to give away these books to such people.
The book was received very well, I left stacks in strategic places (as well as handing them out) and already heard the buzz going around.
It’s going to be a great day.
Zohar – Man of la Book