Oyinkan Braithwaite, Katie Fforde and Peter James are among the line-up of authors penning a new series of short novels for Quick Reads 2021.
Caitlin Moran, Louise Candlish and Khurrum Rahman will also provide titles for the programme, which aims to tackle the UK's adult literacy crisis by helping less confident readers get started.
Run by the Reading Agency, Quick Reads celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2021 after surviving potential closure in 2018 thanks to the intervention of Jojo Moyes.
Publishing on 4th February 2021, the new series of £1 books includes The Skylight (Simon & Schuster) a dark domestic thriller from Candlish, uplifting romance Saving the Day (Century) by Fforde and the holiday from hell for James' creation Detective Roy Grace in Wish You Were Dead (Macmillan). There will be an abridged version of Moran's How to Be a Woman (Ebury); an introduction to Rahman’s small-scale dope dealer Javid Qasim in The Motive (HQ) and The Baby is Mine (Atlantic), Braithwaite’s follow-up to her debut, My Sister, the Serial Killer (Atlantic).
Reading Agency c.e.o. Karen Napier said: “This year’s phenomenal re-launch of Quick Reads demonstrated the vital value this programme brings to improving literacy and helping thousands of people discover the joys and benefits of reading. Next year marks the second of three supported by the generous philanthropic gift from bestselling author Jojo Moyes—after which Quick Reads will be looking for new funding to ensure we can continue to reach new readers—and we are thrilled that such an impressive list of authors have given their time to write one of these transformative, bitesize books.”
Braithwaite added: “When I am writing, I don’t know what my readers will look like or what challenges they may be facing. So it was an interesting experience creating work with the understanding that the reader might need a story that was easy to digest, and who might not have more than a few hours in a week to commit to reading. It was daunting—simpler does not necessarily mean easier—I may have pulled out a couple of my hairs; but I would do it again in a heartbeat. Quick Reads tapped into my desire to create fiction that would be an avenue for relief and escape for all who came across it.”
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