Channel NewsAsia

Read! Fest to rekindle love for reading

The National Library Board on Friday launched this year's Read! Fest themed "Books That Moved Me", which aims to rekindle Singaporeans' fondest memories of reading.

SINGAPORE: Loan figures for books at Singapore's public libraries have increased 30 per cent over the past 10 years. There were also some 10.5 million loans for e-books last year.

But the National Library Board (NLB) aims to do even better.

One way it hopes to do so is through its month-long Read! Fest programme, which was launched on Friday (June 20) and features a whole range of exciting programmes.

The theme for this year's Read! Fest is "Books That Moved Me", which aims to rekindle Singaporeans' fondest memories of reading.

Redesigning book covers of familiar classics and meeting local authors at book parties are some examples of what awaits readers.

There will also be showcases of selected scenes from classics, which will come with sounds and even smells.

Read! Fest will also take another approach to get Singaporeans reading – through short stories.

Elaine Ng, CEO of NLB, said: "One unique feature of the reading campaign is that we give short stories. So for people who don't read, maybe starting on a 200-page book is a big barrier, but a 20-page essay or a 20-page story is something a lot easier to get yourself into.”

Another aim of the programme is to get Singaporeans to share the love of reading.

One reader said: “They really miss out a lot if they don't read. So I will really encourage them, if you really want to know what's happening around you, not to mention what is happening in the world, then reading is just one big gateway that you can pursue.” 

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