Happy World Book Day, UK and Ireland!

Happy World Book Day, UK and Ireland!

While I know this blog tends to focus on the USA (since that’s where I live, I have most access to that information), I do have readers around the world…including the UK and Ireland.

The first Thursday in March is celebrated there as

World Book Day

Booklovers around the world can love this event!

It really celebrates reading, and in fun ways!

Kids dress up as book characters…they would say “fancy dress”, in the USA we would say they come “in costume”.

Every kid in school (as I understand it) gets a one pound certificate (that would be like a kid in the USA getting a $1 gift certificate…although it’s really about a buck and a quarter (($1.25)) exchange right now with the British pound. In Ireland, they get €1.50). That certificate, or token, can be exchanged for a book. This year, there are ten specially produced books on the list, with well known characters (Horrid Henry, Where’s Wally ((the equivalent of Where’s Waldo)), the Famous Five).

What’s really cool is that they get those books at a local bookstore…so that gets them to go there.

Oh, and in case you might think there would be concerns about which books are produced for WBD, students can alternatively use the token for a discount on any full-priced book (it needs to be a minimum of £2.99 (or €3.99 in Ireland…and it’s worth €1.50 there).

While today is World Book Day in the UK and Ireland, the international one is on Miguel Cervantes’ birthday (April 23rd). The UK and Ireland do World Book Night on that date, but there were conflicts that made it not make sense to have the school day celebration on April 23rd (it has a conflict with other holidays, including St. George’s Day).

Check out the site! It’s a lot of fun, and I think well produced. One thing you can do there is listen to audio excerpts of books read by celebrities (Joanna Lumley, Isla Fisher, David Tennant…):


I don’t think we do as big a thing with this in the USA on April 23rd (although I did see that one city, Kensington, Maryland, has a street festival).

Here, I see more coverage for

Free Comic Book Day

which has some similarities (specially produced comics are given away), although not the same government involvement.

Coincidentally, today (March 2nd) is Dr. Seuss’ birthday!

Dr. Seuss Kindle books in the USA store (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

There doesn’t appear to be a special sale today (the least expensive Kindle edition I’m seeing is $7.99), but it’s still worth noting! I know of at least one pediatric department when employees are wearing Seussian garb today…which is a bit like World Book Day!

Cheers to the UK and Ireland for encouraging reading!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

2 Responses to “Happy World Book Day, UK and Ireland!”

  1. Lady Galaxy Says:

    Today is also “Read Across America Day,” but it doesn’t seem to be widely promoted outside of the classroom. My state would always celebrate “Right to Read Week.” I’m not sure if it’s popular in other states.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Lady!

      Read Across America Day is more of an education thing…well, not more than World Book Day, but I believe it is sponsored by the National Education Association (NEA).


      That happens on the closest school day to Dr. Seuss’ birthday. 🙂

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