A London author has joined famous names like Jeffrey Archer and Barbara Taylor Bradford in a campaign to get adults back in to reading.
Harriet Evans, 39, has written the 105 page romantic novel, Rules for Dating a Romantic Hero, as part of the Quick Reads charity project which has been helping adults who find reading difficult to get back into it since 2006.
A former pupil at Strand-on-the-Green Primary School in Chiswick and then at Notting Hill and Ealing High School in Ealing, Ms Evans joined the initiative as she feels reading is so important and with one in six adults in the UK finding reading difficult, she wanted to help dispel the fear.
She joins celebrated authors such as Jeffrey Archer, Barbara Taylor Bradford and Emily Barr as part of the six book initiative where each book will be sold for £1, is easy to read and is short.
“Lots of people feel a bit embarrassed because they fell behind in reading at school and never got the chance to catch up, or just haven’t read in a while and think a whole book is too daunting,” she said.
“I really want to help dispel that fear because reading is honestly the best thing in the world. It’s shocking that so many adults feel too embarrassed to pick up a book so I was really excited when Quick Reads contacted me to see if I wanted to be part of it.
“The more people that hear about Quick Reads, the better, because they’re short and truly easy to read. All six books are different genres so there’s something for everyone. Mine’s a romantic novel and is all about meeting your own Prince Charming.”
Ms Evans is the author of seven romantic novels but said this was one of the most challenging because it was only 100 pages.
“I found writing this more difficult because I had to be so disciplined. For most authors, 400 pages is the average number of pages you write so getting it down to 100 meant a lot of thinking and ensuring everything was very clear and concise but still telling a good story. It really taught me a lot, I actually think every author should do it.”
Ms Evans is also visiting prisons to help people into reading as part of the Quick Reads programme.
Her book and the other five Quick Reads books will be out on February 7 and are available for £1 online at quickreads.org.uk , purchase or download them from bookshops, Amazon, WH Smiths and other e-book sellers. You can also borrow them from libraries.