Blackman and Elphinstone pen WBD 2019 titles

Blackman and Elphinstone pen WBD 2019 titles

Malorie Blackman, Alex T Smith, Abi Elphinstone and Sibéal Pounder are amongst the authors behind next year’s expanded line-up of £1 World Book Day (WBD) titles.

Next year World Book Day will take place on 7th March and there will be 13 £1 books for readers of all ages, from pre-schoolers to school leavers. Blackman’s Nought Forever (Penguin) is aimed at teenagers, along with Patrice Lawrence’s Snap (Hodder Children’s Books), whilst pre-schoolers can choose between The Hundred and One Dalmatians: Cruella and Cadpig, written by Peter Bently and illustrated by Steven Lenton (Egmont), and Ten Little Bookworms by Mike Brownlow, illustrated by Simon Rickerty (Orchard).

‘Bigger Bookworms’ (age 5-8) have a choice of four titles: Lego Minifigure Mayhem by Helen Murray, Beth Davies and Paula Regan (DK), Claude: Best In Show by Smith (Hodder), Hubert Horatio: A Very Fishy Tale by Lauren Child (HarperCollins) and Bad Mermaids Meet The Witches by Pounder (Bloomsbury), whilst Elphinstone’s Everdark (Simon & Schuster Children’s) is offered to ‘Even Bigger Bookworms’ (readers aged 9+).

Even bigger bookworms (9+) can also opt for titles by two of the biggest American children’s authors writing at the moment - Percy Jackson and the Singer of Apollo by Rick Riordan or Diary of Greg Heffley’s Best Friend by Jeff Kinney (both Puffin) - or one from British favourite Frank Cottrell Boyce. His title The Great Rocket Robbery is illustrated by Steven Lenton (Macmillan).

Book fans in Ireland also have the option of Sam Hannigan’s Rock Star Granny by Alan Nolan (O’Brien Press) and there are two books in Welsh: Na Nel! by Meleri Wyn James and Cyw by Anni Llyn. All the books are available in braille, large print and audio formats.

All the World Book Day titles are original, with the exception of Percy Jackson and The Singer of Apollo by Rick Riordan, which has previously been published in e-book and as part of a print anthology of fantasy stories; this is its first time in standalone print.

World Book Day's three-year ‘Share a Story’ campaign is now in its second year and once again the campaign will encourage parents and carers to read with their children’s for 10 minutes every day.

Kirsten Grant, director of World Book Day, said: “We know that sharing stories together, at home or school, in the library or in the park, on a bus or train – anywhere, anytime – for just 10 minutes a day has long-lasting positive effects on a child’s future and creates readers for life.

“This World Book Day, we’re asking publishers and booksellers to create these 10 minutes for their workforces, at any time during the day, so they can share a story with their own children. Could there be a stronger message to consumers on World Book Day than to see those who publish and sell stories to block out the time to share them? Leading by example, the industry can inspire the entire nation to follow suit, on World Book Day, and beyond.”

Rob Biddulph will act as World Book Day’s official illustrator and a new events programme will involve authors and illustrators visiting National Literacy Trust hubs. In addition 20,000 books will be given to prisons in England and Wales, for prisoners to read with their families, and ten million stickers will be distributed to children in schools.

This year book buyers spent more than one million tokens on £1 books, despite the bad weather conditions caused by 'The Beast from the East'. The live event – ‘The Biggest Book Show on Earth’ – reached record numbers, with 700,000 signing up to the online event and while a further 4,500 took part in person, according to World Book Day.

World Book Day is sponsored by National Book Tokens and The Bookseller is its official media partner.