Some of the Frome World Book Night Givers collecting their boxes of free books.
Each person had 48 books to recommend and give away on World Book Night

An ambitious initiative that is stranger than fiction . . .
Its free books for all!

The first ever World Book Night took place in Frome, delighting two groups of literature lovers!
During the evening of Saturday 5 March over 1000 books changed hands as twenty-two World Book Night Givers in Frome distributed their chosen books. Fourteen Givers in Frome selected Hunting Raven Bookshop as a collection point and a further eight chose Frome library to distribute their chosen titles.

Some 20,000 people across Great Britain had applied to be Givers and were asked to pick their favourite from 25 titles and were then given 48 copies to pass on to friends with their recommendation. It was suggested that Givers should share copies of their chosen book far and wide to as diverse a group of readers as possible.

Many World Book Night events took place across Frome. Here at Hunting Raven Books, Karin Campagna had invited students and staff from local schools to receive copies of the classic anti-war novel All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque, first published in Germany in 1929. Karin was delighted to meet the students who had been nominated by their teachers from twelve schools in Frome and the immediately surrounding areas.

At Frome Library there were Bedtime Stories for Children at 6pm (pyjamas and teddies welcome) followed at 7pm by the Big Book Giveaway. Library staff were thrilled with take up at the event. An audience of fifty-plus enjoyed their bedtime stories and more than 130 people attended the Big Book Giveaway. Several of the World Book Night titles were read from and discussed at a shared readings event, ‘Books Please’, hosted by Alison Clink.

This new initiative took place two days after World Book Day which focusses on children and BBC 2 screened a whole evening of special programmes to mark the event. Plans for a 2012 event are now being discussed.

Nationally, one million books were given away.