x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Free book for readers willing to share

This weekend, organisers of the upcoming Abu Dhabi International Book Fair will be giving away books to anyone who signs up for the worldwide sharing programme called Book Crossing.

ABU DHABI // This weekend, organisers of the upcoming Abu Dhabi International Book Fair will be giving away books to anyone who signs up for the worldwide sharing programme called Book Crossing. The idea is that readers may register a book online, post a review once they have read it and then leave it in a public place to be picked up by another reader who, they hope, will repeat the process.

The process, dubbed "read and release" allows bookworms to follow the journey of the texts around the city, country and abroad. "It's an ideal way for people to discover new authors or find new books by their current favourites," said Claudia Kaiser, the general manager of Kitab, which is putting on the book fair. "In addition, there is the added bonus of being able to search for a specific book, or track one you have left to see where it ends up."

Started in 2001 by an American named Ron Hornbaker as a way of encouraging reading and sharing enjoyable stories, Book Crossing has grown into an internationally recognised form of non-commercial book promotion. There are more than 750,000 "book crossers" in 130 countries, according to the welcome page on www.bookcrossing.com. Mr Hornbaker said there were 328 active books in the UAE. The Book Crossing stand will set up in the ground-floor atrium of Marina Mall. All books will be provided in a weather-proof plastic bag for safekeeping. Readers of all ages are encouraged to participate and are welcome to bring their own books to release within the scheme.

The book fair itself will take place at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre from March 17 to 22 and will be attended by 500 publishers. aseaman@thenational.ae