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World Book Day Award Winning School Receives £20,000 Library Makeover

Eltham Hill School in Greenwich, London, will receive £10,000 of books for its school library. In addition to the books, it will receive £10,000 worth of library furniture from school library designers BookSpace for Schools. The winning schools were chosen by judges headed by internationally bestselling author James Patterson, who founded the prize with £50,000 of his own money in 2015.

The second prize winner, three runners-up and two highly commended schools share another £15,000. Schools had been creatively challenged to respond to the question ‘Where Does Your Reading Take You?’ in any way they wanted. Eltham Hill School responded with a whole school campaign which saw pupils write hundreds of postcards about reading to their friends, family, favourite writers and fictional characters, which were brought together in the publication of a book.

Amy Lloyd, Learning Resource Centre Leader at Eltham Hill, says winning will transform how the school, rated Outstanding by Ofsted, perceives its library: “Reading is central to everything we do, but these new resources will really bring a new energy to reading. Winning the World Book Day Award highlights our commitment to reading across and beyond the curriculum. We’re hugely grateful to James Patterson and BookSpace and we are already seeing the results of their generosity. All these new books on this wonderful new furniture – it has transformed our library.” The school visited Foyles Bookshop and GOSH Comics in London to spend their money. “For students who were involved in choosing the books and designing the new space, the process has been a real life-changer, we can’t wait to see the effect on the whole school when we unveil the new books.”

James Patterson donating £250,000 to British and Irish bookshops

Following a similar act of philanthropy in the US last year, hyperbestseller James Patterson is set to donate £250,000 to independent booksellers across Britain and Ireland in a bid to ensure no children have to live lives without books. Patterson’s pledge coincides with the beginning of Independent Booksellers Week, which starts this coming Saturday. The awards scheme is open to any independent bookshop featuring a dedicated children’s section whose annual turnover is under £1 million. Grants will be awarded ranging from £250 to £5,000 (which, for the maths-impaired, means somewhere between 50 and 1,000 bookshops stand to benefit).

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EL James highest-earning author in world, surprising no one

To the surprise of hopefully very few who have so much as glanced at a bestseller list since spring of 2012, business magazine Forbes’ annually released figures of the biggest sellers in publishing have revealed that, between June 2012 and June 2013, the highest-earning author in the world was EL James, the first-time novelist whose Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy has made her $95 million (£65 million) over that twelve month period. James’ closest rival was veteran airport standby James Patterson, whose books have sold over 270 million copies since the publication of his debut novel, The Thomas Berryman Number, in 1976, and who made $91 million in the same timeframe. Both authors’ sales dwarfed third-placed Suzanne Collins, whose Hunger Games trilogy made her a mere $55 million, presumably helped along by the highly lucrative film adaptation of the trilogy’s first instalment. I’m sure she’s inconsolable.

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