Tuesday, 16 July 2013


Crowds queue to meet Anthony Horowitz

The Get Reading stage in Trafalgar Square. 

Saturday saw Trafalgar Square taken over by the first ever Get London Reading Festival, sponsored by The Evening Standard and Nook, as part of a campaign to promote literacy and the joys of reading to children. Thousands of people came out on one of the hottest days of the year to listen to readings by writers, actors and other famous faces including Anne Fine, Hugh Grant and Princess Beatrice. As well as readings there was face painting, balloon modelling, a parade of the Warhorse puppet from the west end show and, rather incongruously, a chap wandering around in a Darth Vader costume.

Over in the Nook Signing Tent we ran 6 hours of author signings including Anthony Horowitz, Steve Cole and Sally Gardner. A particular highlight was a group of school girls to whom Malorie Blackman was a rock star; their excitement and emotion at getting to meet her was amazing to see. So too was the kindness of Anne Fine who had to dash off from her signing to go on stage but returned afterwards to make sure none of her readers missed out.

As well as the signings we helped a team from Nook demonstrate their range of e-readers and tablets, most of which are available in store now.

Huge thanks must go to my colleagues Bea, Laura, Luke and Marianna. They worked tirelessly on what was a very long, very hot, but ultimately very rewarding day.

Lachlan Mackinnon

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