Nelson’s column projection for World Book Night
MobyLives eyewitness report: World Book Night
by Melville House
As the official British correspondent for MobyLives, this weekend I attended the wonderful launch of World Book Night to report back to our readers on the festivities. The opening ceremony took place on Friday 4th March in Trafalgar Square, with a line-up of authors including Nick Cave, John le Carre, Sarah Waters and many others. The set-up was pretty spectacular, with a stage under Nelson’s Column furnished to look like a cosy sitting room full of couches and even a fireplace which, unfortunately for the night’s readers, was not real.
By 6pm Trafalgar Square was filled with people eagerly waiting for the start of the night, which was briefly introduced by Jamie Byng, the brains behind World Book Night and head of Canongate Books. The idea behind the evening was for authors to read from either their own work or from their favourite texts. The first author to kick off the proceedings was Australian writer DBC Pierre, author of Booker Prize-winning Vernon God Little, who decided to read from the opening of Charles Dickens’ Bleak House. Given the rapidly dropping temperature of the evening, it was an appropriate choice, but what was even more striking was the hush that spread across the crowd as he started reading.