World Book Night – books and walking

A couple of months ago I was delighted to hear I’d been selected as one of the 20,000 givers for World Book Night. For those who don’t know,

World Book Night is a celebration of reading and books which sees tens of thousands of passionate volunteers gift books in their communities to share their love of reading.

In 2012 World Book Night will be celebrated in the UK, Ireland, Germany and USA on April 23. In the UK, 20,000 passionate readers will gift 24 copies of one of their favourite books to encourage those who don’t regularly read to fall in love with reading.

From the 25 titles available, I chose to give out copies of Joe Simpson’s Touching the Void.

Book release

Each of the books are registered on the WBN website and on Bookcrossing and given their own tracking number. If the new recipients of the book wish, they can go to the website(s) and record their experience of receiving/finding the book and what they thought of it.

If you don’t know Touching the Void by Joe Simpson, it is most definitely a book worth reading. This is what I said in my wee book review when I first read it.

This book tells the amazing true story of Joe Simpson and Simon Yates fight for survival after a dreadful accident when descending from Siula Grande, a 21,000ft peak in the Peruvian Andes. Even though you know the eventual outcome of the book, I found Joe’s narrative to be totally gripping as he and Simon found themselves in more and more desperate situations. They both overcame the obstacles encountered on this harrowing descent by displaying an amazing will to live.

It’s an uplifting, exciting and moving story of the stubbornness of the human spirit to go on even when the body is saying ‘enough’. The story is told in a candid and realistic way by both Simpson and Yates. How both reacted to incredibly harrowing circumstances and how they dealt with near impossible choices is astonishing. This is not a romanticised version of events – both men ran a full gamut of emotions as they made decisions which they knew could mean the difference between life and death.

In my application I said I’d give the books to hillwalkers who I met out and about. I had hoped to give most of the copies to people directly, but those I asked had read the book already (the problem with 20+ year old book?) or didn’t want it. However I was happy to wild release the copies instead, as this is what I do with my bookcrossing books, and I know some were picked up within minutes.

On Saturday I left some books at Plodda Falls, near Cannich, a spot frequented by dog walkers and families out for short strolls.

On Sunday I took a 14.5 km walk around Rothiemurchus leaving the books at the path junctions and other likely spots where they may be found by folks walking Glen Einich and the Lairig Ghru. It was a wonderful day of sunshine with fresh snow on the Cairngorms giving a magnificent backdrop.
Lochan Deo, Rothiemurchus

I tried to get some good photos showing the books where I left them, but it’s not always easy to capture the book and the backdrop!

Bookcrossing for World Book Night at Loch an Eilein Bookcrossing for World Book Night at Loch Morlich

Bookcrossing for World Book Night Bookcrossing for World Book Night

Bookcrossing for World Book Night at Lochan Deo Bookcrossing for World Book Night

Bookcrossing for World Book Night Bookcrossing for World Book Night at Rothiemurchus

Loch an Eilein was looking great as usual.

Loch an Eilein

Now, I just need to sit back and wait to hear when any of the books are reported as found and to read what the finders think of the story.

13 comments on “World Book Night – books and walking

  1. Fantastic book. What a great bonus to be out and about on what was clearly a lovely day and to come across a free book. My idea of heaven.

    • Yes, I saw the film and enjoyed it. It follows the book pretty well. Coincidentally we went to hear Simon Yates talk last week (a tour to promote his new book) and he spoke about making the film. He didn’t really enjoy the filming and he and the producer had a falling out during filming.

  2. I hope if I ever make it over to Scotland to somewhere, on a hilltop or at a junction in a forest, find a copy of this book! Wonderful idea and superbly executed (I’ve been occasionally using book crossing, though never as enthusiastically as you – though you might have inspired me with this post to try it again =)!

  3. Unusual way to give books out but a great idea Sheila.My heart sank when I saw the first adverts for kibble.Although you can store hundreds of books on these tablets somehow I dont think you value them the same.Its too easy.Like I pod tunes. They become instant and more disposable somehow. Nothing like having a bookcase full of books you have collected for years.
    Or maybe thats just an age thing.

  4. Pingback: A run around Loch an Eilean | Rambling on...

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