Posted in general and welcome

Books are My Bag, it’s official!

If you’re a book lover living in the UK it’s likely that you will be aware of a national book-giving party occurring in the UK today, Saturday 14th September. The idea, says the campaign’s website, is:

‘…to celebrate bookshops. This collaboration between publishers, bookshops and authors and is the biggest ever promotion of bookshops. For many people bookshops conjure fond images of book readings, in-store cafes and delight at the discovery of a new author. In fact, 56% of all book buying decisions are made by consumers in a bookshop and high street bookshops (both chains and independents) still account for almost 40% of books bought by consumers. Yet, many high street bookshops are under threat. BOOKS ARE MY BAG aims to halt this process by celebrating the nation’s love of bookshops, calling on book lovers to show their support by visiting and purchasing a book from their favourite bookshop on Saturday 14th September.’

I can’t imagine a world without bookshops and so I was delighted to support this cause. We were rather pushed for time today as Holly is singing in a wedding but we made it down to Blackwell’s in Oxford to check out what was happening.

The buzz in the shop was undeniable as people browsed through the books, listened to talks and had their purchases handled by booksellers in fancy dress (there was an impressive bunny in the adult section). We of course headed towards the children’s department and were delighted to see Griselda Heppel, a local author whose book Ante’s Inferno won The Children’s People’s Book Prize (read more about the book on her blog). We have a copy of this book to read soon and are definitely looking forward to it having heard Griselda read an excerpt from the story in the shop.

In the children’s section there was an arts and crafts table where children could redesign a book cover or do general arty stuff. Holly chose to decorate the free Books Are My Bag bag she was given instead:


Holly's Books Are My Bag bag
Holly’s Books Are My Bag bag


With time rapidly running out, we then had a browse in the children’s section and bought three books:

  • Wonder by R.J. Palacio
  • Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell (another local author)
  • My Brilliant Life and Other Disasters by Catherine Wilkins


Despite a hurried visit we had a fantastic time and it’s been amazing to see people getting excited by books both on Twitter (talking about today’s events around the UK) and in the bookshop itself. We hope Books Are My Bag will become a regular feature in the bookselling calendar, and will be there to support it!

There’s still enough time today to get out and support your local bookshop, so please do. And tell us which one is your favourite and why! Tell us why we should visit it and send in pics!




Childtastic Books started out as a collaborative blog, written by me and my young daughter Holly. Now she's nearly a teen, she's off doing exciting and new things but I am still here, reading, writing and reviewing books for children and young adults of all ages. I miss her input but I hope she will pop in from time to time to do some guest posts! A little about me - I have just finished an MA in Children's Literature from the University of Roehampton (result pending, eeek) and am a part-time primary school librarian. The other part of my time is spent writing and editing, my own work and others, and I am waiting for my first non-fiction book to be published - a teacher resources pack for Handa's Surprise. I welcome comments and love to hear from visitors to this blog. Please note though that, because of time constraints, it is rare that I can read and review books from self-published authors. I receive so many requests and feel badly about not being able to keep up with them all. Thanks for visiting! Sam

2 thoughts on “Books are My Bag, it’s official!

  1. It was a super day with a lovely atmosphere – congratulations to Blackwell’s for getting into the spirit of the thing with such a sense of fun. It’s not every day you get served by Harry Potter, Rabbit, Charlie Chaplin, Alice in Wonderland….

    I so enjoyed meeting you and Holly – thank you very much for this lovely mention of Ante’s Inferno!


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