World Book Night US reports that it has recruited more 29,000 givers to hand out 580,000 free books today. Aligned with Shakespeare’s birthday, this year’s efforts include distribution of thousands of free copies of Shakespeare’s Sonnets to be distributed at schools, and seats at four Broadway plays in New York. The third annual WBN US will distribute about 16 percent more paperbacks than last year, “primarily [through] outreach into underfunded public schools.” A number of author-led kickoff events were held last night around the country, noted on the WBN events map.
Executive director Carl Lennertz says in the release: “Our volunteers are caring people who want to extend the simple but essential gift of a book to those who perhaps have never owned a book. It is an act of kindness, and it can be life-changing, for the recipient and giver alike.” Most of the giveaway titles are listed here.