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World Book Night promotes literacy

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Posted at 4:00 PM, Apr 23, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-23 18:00:50-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Librarians and booksellers all over the country are promoting literacy by giving away free books to those who need them.

About 30 to 35 books are chosen by a group of librarians each year for World Book Night, which is on April 23, and the books are distributed for free.

The authors agree to waive their royalty fees, and the book’s publisher pays to print them. Thousands of copies of those books are distributed to “givers” who are typically librarians and book store owners. These “givers” then try their best to give the right book to the right person.

Betsy Burton owns King’s English Bookshop in Salt Lake City, and she spoke about the program.

“Givers figure out a book they would like to give off this list, in a place that would be best suited to give that book, so they’re matching books to people who very much need the books, and by giving the right book to the right person, they’re changing lives all over the country,” Burton said. “It’s just a wonderful program.”

The Salt Lake City Police Department delivered about 600 books  that had arrived at the King’s English to the Salt Lake City Library Tuesday, and Wednesday the books were being distributed by participants in the program.