2022 Reading Challenge

2022 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 5 books toward her goal of 260 books.

Guest Post: Wake Me Up When September Ends…For All Hallow’s Read!

Today’s Guest Post is provided by Erin at Pagan Spirits – enjoy!

Like it or not, it’s back to school time once again. As September rolls around and summer comes to an end, the leaves on the trees begin to turn colors and the thoughts of the young and young-at-heart alike turn to Halloween. It is, after all, the next great holiday (and break from studies) after Labor Day. This year, why not participate in All Hallow’s Read?

Author Neil Gaiman sparked All Hallow’s Read on October 23, 2010 in his blog post “A Modest Proposal (that doesn’t actually involve eating anyone).” (http://journal.neilgaiman.com/2010/10/modest-proposal-that-doesnt-actually.html ) His idea was simple: for Halloween, or the week of Halloween, give away scary books. Give “scary” (but still age-appropriate) children’s books to children, and give scary adult books to adults.

Less than a year later, it’s started to catch on. You can even keep up with All Hallow’s Read on Twitter (#allhallowsread).

The idea is not to replace sugary treats with books, although this is an option for some people. The idea is to give away “scary” books along with the usual, more traditional Halloween festivities. (Bobbing for books, a la bobbing for apples, is not recommended, since the paper tends to get soaked.)

All Hallow’s Read is increasingly popular with teachers, as a recent post on Examiner.com (http://www.examiner.com/public-schools-in-columbus/what-are-you-doing-all-hallow-s-read?do_not_mobile_redirect=1) showed. Even schools where Halloween is not officially celebrated may allow a giveaway of October-themed books for young readers.

The official All Hallow’s Read website (http://www.allhallowsread.com/ ) recommends checking with a librarian or a bookseller to see what some good titles to give away might be. It also suggests that the book giveaway need not involve a huge outlay of cash – the books could come from your shelves; perhaps your children are grown and wouldn’t mind if you gave away a few of their old books.

The books could come from thrift stores, second-hand or independent bookstores, or GoodReads’ book swap. They could come from your local library’s discards or a church rummage sale. Another place where inexpensive children’s books can sometimes be found are the dollar bins located at the front of Target stores. The important thing is to encourage reading, the love of books, and book-sharing, along with sharing the wholesome fun of Halloween.

Adults love receiving scary books for All Hallow’s Read, too. There are billions of scary choices for adults, but if pressed to think of a title to bestow, you can always give them Hallowe’en Party by Agatha Christie.

Erin O’Riordan writes the general book blog Pagan Spirits, named for O’Riordan’s romance novel series. While the novel series and the blog are aimed at readers 18 and up, O’Riordan enjoys many genres of fiction, including young adult novels.



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