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World Book Day is celebrated around the UK

1st March 2012

Millions of children and adults around the UK are celebrating World Book Day today, with literary events, special broadcasts and book token giveaways in schools and public buildings helping to promote books and reading.

In the UK, World Book Day is celebrated on the first Thursday in March every year, with millions of book tokens being handed out at the nation's schools in a bid to boost interest in reading among young people.

This year, the theme is The Biggest Book Show on Earth, which will see some of the most celebrated children's authors in the world come together to create online broadcasts featuring poetry and book recitals and dramatic reenactions of famous tales.

Children's laureate Julia Donaldson, Jacqueline Wilson and Artemis Fowl author Eoin Colfer are all taking part in the presentations, with Donaldson claiming it is an excellent chance for children to learn more about literature.

'It's a fantastic way of bringing children together to meet some of the country's very best authors and illustrators. We can't wait to transport millions of children to exciting new worlds,' she added.

To celebrate World Book Day 2012, Donaldson has also teamed up with How to Train Your Dragon author Cressida Cowell to launch a search for the UK's best storyteller, with children able to nominate family, friends, teachers or a local librarian to receive the award.

This year will also see a record 14 million book tokens handed out across the UK, encouraging youngsters to add to their book shelf or even buy the first title to place on it.

World Book Day director Kirsten Grant said it will give the whole country a chance to share stories.

'The £1 World Book Day Book Tokens are a great way to get young people of all ages started and there are some brilliant events lined up that will make this year's World Book Day bigger and better than ever before,' she added.

The event has also received support from Prime Minister David Cameron, who said it plays an important role in helping children to develop a love of reading from an early age, before revealing that his favourite book as a child was the Dr Seuss title The Lorax.

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