Quick Reads needs more time

<p>The Quick Reads initiative could end after this March&#39;s batch of titles if publishers do not pledge their continued support.</p><p>The initiative needs to source new funding and a publisher to take ownership of the project--a role until now filled by Random House Group and its c.e.o. Gail Rebuck. &quot;Publishers need to be in this for the long term,&quot; said project director Kathy Gale. &quot;This kind of campaign grows and builds each year. Rome was not built in a day and you can&#39;t expect Quick Reads to suddenly convince the third of the British population that never picks up a book [to do so] after just two years.&quot;</p><p>Rebuck said that as the publishing industry sees &quot;little growth&quot; above inflation, it is vital to engage with non-readers. &quot;Although it may be a slow process, we must continue to support [Quick Reads&#39;] growing and enthusiastic readership,&quot; she said.</p><p>The new batch of eight &pound;1.99 titles will be launched on World Book Day (1st March), and publicity will be boosted by a BBC dramatisation of Andy McNab&#39;s 2006 Quick Read <em>The Grey Man</em>. Morrisons and HMV have come on board for the first time, and 8,000 organisations are registered for the campaign--up from 5,500 last year. Quick Reads is also working with employers for the first time, offering dumpbins that hold 60 copies of the books for staff rest areas and canteens, at &pound;100 a time.</p>