World Book Day

WBD groupWorld Book Day isn't just for children. It's for adults too and it really is celebrated in many countries around the world.

The idea for the day came from Catalonia where roses and books are traditionally given as presents on 23 April. Unesco developed that festival into World Book and Copyright Day, which is now celebrated in many countries around the world.

In the UK, we don't use the St George's Day date, Instead, we hold World Book Day on the first Thursday in March to make sure it always happens in term time. It has grown steadily in importance, helped by the free £1 book tokens given to children and the selection of special £1 books published each year to make sure they have something to buy without paying extra. These books are always by well-known authors and usually end up topping the sales charts.

The adult strand of World Book Day is called Spread the Word, and it encourages readers to recommend books to each other by postcard or email. With reluctant readers in mind, it's also promoted the Quick Reads initiative – quality books by leading publishers and authors that are short, fast-paced and easy to read. Sold under the slogan “Easy to pick up, hard to put down”, the list of titles is growing every year.

For more information on World Book Day, visit .

For more information on Quick Reads, visit .

For ideas for World Book Day events, see our book days page.


Interviewing authors   Commissioning a book   Author visits to schools    Writing workshops   Book days   World Book Day