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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 September 2005, 02:20 GMT 03:20 UK
Reading adventure for South West
Open book
Everyone is being encouraged to read
A massive "Reading Adventure" is being planned for the South West of England.

The scheme is being expanded after three years in Bristol, where everyone in the city was encouraged to read the same book at the same time.

Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days has been chosen for the 80-day project beginning on 5 January.

From Swindon to Penzance, and Gloucester to Plymouth, tens of thousands of people are expected to participate, organisers said.

'Best choice'

Andrew Kelly, director of the Great Reading Adventure, said: "We wanted a book that the whole region could enjoy and learn from as part of our celebrations of the work of Isambard Kingdom Brunel that will take place next year.

"Jules Verne wrote optimistically about the opening up of the world through transport and technology.

"He also sailed on the Great Eastern - Brunel's last great ship - and wrote a novel about this called The Floating City. There is no better choice," he added.

About 40,000 copies of the book will be distributed around the region and readers will be able to obtain an illustrated guide, detailing the history of the book and author.

Previous Bristol Great Reading Adventures have included Treasure Island (2003), The Day of the Triffids (2004) and Helen Dunmore's The Siege.

All 15 library authorities in the South West are participating and more than 80 schools in Bristol and 70 in Swindon have joined in the project to date.

City embarks on reading adventure
06 Jan 05 |  Bristol/Somerset

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