World Book Night Adds Special Edition of Twelve Years a Slave

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World Book Night U.S. announced today that a special World Book Night edition of Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave will be made available to schools as part of this year’s April 23 celebration of reading. The books will be sent to select participating bookstores and libraries that in turn will get them to local schools on April 23 as part of World Book Night.

“With the attention brought to this important book by the award-winning movie, we felt that we should make it available as part of World Book Night’s mission,” said World Book Night U.S. Executive Director Carl Lennertz. “One third of our half million free books each year go into underfunded rural and urban high schools, and when Dover Publications offered to work with us on this, we jumped at the chance.”

Steven Sussman of Dover Books said that the company was “thrilled to be printing this book for students who will be able to read this vital work of American history.”

To thank Dover for its support, Lennertz encouraged booksellers to order the special Dover edition of Twelve Years a Slave (9780486789620, $4.50) for sale in stores.  

In other news this week, World Book Night U.S. announced a partnership with the Audio Publishers Association (APA) to give free audiobook downloads to the 25,000 WBN volunteer givers and bookseller givers.

“Each volunteer will be able to receive up to three audiobook downloads via APA member, and two-thirds of the WBN picks will be available as part of this campaign,” said Anthony Goff, vice president at Hachette Audio and an APA Board member. “We are so happy that the caring and generous WBN givers can avail themselves of some great listening.”

Lennertz added, “We have always wanted to make audiobooks a part of WBN. We haven’t the means yet to get them to the same audience as the book recipients, but the APA was happy to offer the downloads to our givers in March as a thank you for their passion and work.”