Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Free Books Are Coming Back – There Are No Strings Attached

Free Books Are Coming Back – And There Are No Strings Attached

A nationwide act of generosity is about to hit the streets! From 4 September, in towns and cities from Kaitaia to Invercargill, thousands of books will be given away to men, women and children, with the invitation to read them and then pass them on to someone else. This gift of discovery and adventure is known as the ‘Travelling Books’ project, an initiative by Literacy Aotearoa and New Zealand Post, now in its third year.

The books, more than 7,000 in all this year, have been written by New Zealand and international authors, and include fiction, non-fiction, and topics of interest to all ages.

The Travelling Books project is designed to foster a love of reading, and has been enthusiastically received by lucky book-finders since 2011, when it went nationwide for the first time.

The Travelling Books project is being launched on Tuesday 3 September at Government House in Auckland by the Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae and Lady Janine Mateparae.

Once launched, the books will begin their journeys by being released in public locations in the following centres:

Invercargill, Gore, Queenstown, Oamaru, Timaru, Dunedin, Ashburton, Christchurch, Greymouth, Westport, Blenheim, Nelson, Wellington, Lower Hutt, Porirua, Upper Hutt, Featherston, Masterton, Paraparaumu, Feilding, Levin, Dannevirke, Palmerston North, Whanganui, New Plymouth, Napier, Gisborne, Wairoa, Turangi, Taupo, Te Kuiti, Tokoroa, Rotorua, Hamilton, Tauranga, Thames, Pukekohe, Manukau, Waiheke Island, Waitakere, North Shore, Auckland Central, Dargaville, Whangarei, Kaitaia

The free books – more than 100 different titles – include works by bestselling authors like Jo Nesbo and Jenny Pattrick alongside works by beloved household names like Bernard Beckett and Joy Cowley; and less well-known treasures by local and international writers.

“The Travelling Books project aims to make the exciting worlds of children’s, young adult and adult books readily available to New Zealanders everywhere,” says Literacy Aotearoa CEO, Bronwyn Yates. “It highlights the power of giving, builds community and is a practical, grassroots approach to promoting literacy.”

“Our ultimate aim is to raise people’s awareness that adult literacy need is a major national issue, by celebrating literacy in a way that focuses on the positive and fun aspects of reading, learning and expanding our worlds,” Bronwyn Yates added.

New Zealand Post has a strong tradition of promoting reading and, as sponsor of the New Zealand Post Book Awards and the New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards, has been a natural partner for Literacy Aotearoa on this project.

New Zealand Post’s head of community investment, Nicola Airey, says the Travelling Books project is a fun and innovative way to promote reading amongst New Zealanders, by making books available to those who otherwise may not be able to access them.

“The simple act of passing on a book you’ve enjoyed to someone else reinforces the joys of sharing and recommending books to others,” Nicola Airey said.

Travelling Book hunters will recognise the new releases by a distinctive sticker on the cover. Inside they will find instructions on how to pass the books on once they’ve finished. They can hand them on to a friend or colleague or, even better, leave them in a safe, dry, public space, where the book can be found anew by passers-by, who can take them home and discover for themselves the pleasure of reading and then passing on freely-shared books.

The books will be sent on their journey around the country by the 45 member providers of Literacy Aotearoa, who will work with local PostShops to liberate them into their communities.

Each book has a unique code inside the front cover, so anyone who picks it up and reads it is invited to log on to the Literacy Aotearoa website and record its title and location. Everyone who reports a book sighting goes into a monthly draw to win one of two $50 ‘Prezzy Cards’ donated by New Zealand Post.

The books were purchased from Huia Publishers, Random House, Gecko Press and Scholastic – who offered generous discounts to help support the Travelling Books project.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Avantdale Bowling Club

Auckland rapper and MC Tom Scott brought his stunning jazz-infused Taite Music Prize-winning project Avantdale Bowling Club to the Opera House headlining Wellington's 2020 Jazz Festival. More>>

Howard Davis: Kevin Field Quintet

With the hardest pews in town and an icon of Ruth Bader Ginsburg adorning the walls, St Peter's Church added a distinctly spiritual element to the debut of three new pieces by Kiwi jazz pianist and composer Kevin Field that celebrated our common humanity. More>>

Stage: Wellington’s Theatre Awards To Go Ahead

The Wellington Theatre Awards will go ahead despite a devastating year for New Zealand’s creative sector. Wellington Theatre Awards Trust Chair Tom Broadmore said, “the creative sector, and Wellington’s vibrant theatre sector has been gutted by the ... More>>

Journalism: An Icon Returns. New-Look North & South Magazine Hits Shelves

One of New Zealand’s most iconic magazines, North & South, is back on the shelves this week – with new independent ownership. The magazine, which has set the benchmark for investigative journalism in New Zealand since 1986, relaunches this week, ensuring ... More>>

Howard Davis: Three New Art Books for Xmas

Massey University and Te Papa Presses have published three new art books just in time for Xmas: Dick Frizzell's Me, According to the History of Art, Railways Studios, celebrating unique examples of government-sponsored advertising and design, and Nature - Stilled, Jane Ussher's extraordinary photographs of flora and fauna from the museum's natural history collections.

Howard Davis: Troy Kingi Rules The San Fran

The award-winning Northland musician performed songs from his new record The Ghost of Freddie Cesar, the fourth installment in his 10/10/10 series - ten albums in ten years in ten genres. More>>

Howard Davis: The Phoenix Foundation Rises From The Ashes (& Chris O'Connor Talks)

Simultaneously dreamy and structured, understated and subtle, spacious and hypnotic, The Phoenix Foundation's new album Lifeline includes gorgeous vocal harmonies, lilting lyrics with no lack of wry, self-deprecating humour, and gently weeping guitar parts. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland