Cork County Council Library & Arts Service has teamed up with libraries nationwide, as well as publishers, booksellers, and authors for the ‘Ireland Reads’ campaign, part of the government’s Keep Well initiative.
Ireland Reads aims to celebrate reading and all the benefits it can have for wellbeing and enjoyment and to get the whole country reading in the lead up to a national day of reading on Thursday, February 25.
A new website www.irelandreads.ie has been set up where people can pledge to ‘squeeze in a read’ on the day and see how much time has been pledged by the Irish public so far.
The website offers book recommendations suited to a person’s interests and the time they have available.
There are more than 800 recommendations from librarians all around the country.
By entering their favourite type of book and how long they would like to read each day, users of the website will be offered a suitable book suggestion and advise how long it will take to complete.
Campaign partners and libraries will be running Ireland Reads initiatives and events throughout February.
Cork County Council Library & Arts Service will share information on their social media channels (Facebook @corkcocolibrary, Twitter @corkcolibrary) throughout the month to help and encourage people in their pledge to “squeeze in a read” and provide tips and advice on encouraging reluctant readers of all ages, alongside top picks and recommendations from Council Library book clubs, from light reads to literary reads and advice on how to cultivate your reading habit.
As part of the campaign, the Council will also provide ‘Story Times’ in Irish and English for younger children.
Cork author and primary school teacher Siobhán Ní Mhuimhneacháin will talk about her book An Gadaí Dubh and the ancient folk tale which inspired it.
Travel writer Manchán Magan will discuss his travels and experiences in South American, India and Africa.
Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Mary Linehan Foley welcomed the Ireland Reads initiative.
“There really is something for everyone, whether you wish to stay informed, broaden your horizons, take a break from day to day life or deepen your understanding of your pastimes or interests. Taking part in Ireland Reads is a great way to find what works for you, and I would also encourage everyone to take advantage of Cork County Council’s online library services. By becoming a member, you can access many newspapers, books, magazines and so much more. There is no better way to switch off than by getting lost in a good book.”
Cork County Librarian, Emer O’Brien added:
"These are all available free online and any time to library members. Libraries and library staff are waiting to welcome people back whenever that’s possible, but until then we always have books to remind us of other people, other places, and better days. So, this month please pledge to take some reading time for yourself or to share with family.”