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This item was posted on Saturday, June 15th, 2013; tagged , & .


Wander & Read

A travelling book; an experiment in trust

What is the value of a story if it isn’t shared? What if the pages remain unread, the audiobook remains unplayed, or a narrator never shares a tale with eager listeners? The imperative of a story is to be enjoyed, to be past on, to travel far and wide, and reach new audiences.

With Wander Reads — a project started by two fiction enthusiasts — we try to give stories feet, allowing books to travel around the world, to be shared, and hopefully turn casual readers into new fans of the authors’ oeuvre. Meanwhile, the book itself becomes a chronicle of its own travels, as readers leave messages for future readers behind. At the same time, Wander Reads is also a social experiment in trust: we try to see how long a book can be passed on before it disappears, to be lost among its companions on someone’s bookshelf.

The first wandering book is a signed copy of Neil Gaiman’s new novel The Ocean at the End of the Lane. The marvellous “Turtle” (@turtlesong17) and the wonderful Tricia (@navigatorJai) have relinquished their copies of The Ocean at the End of the Lane, too. Now there are three copies of Neil Gaiman’s latest novel roaming the world!

Please try and keep these books travelling for as long as possible… and if you’ve enjoyed it, then why don’t you drop by your local, independent bookstore and get yourself a copy of the book, and/or of one of the author’s other titles?

The Ocean at the End of the Lane

The Rules

Step 1

Tweet to @wanderread to tell us you received the book. Cancel your appointments, make yourself a “cuppa”, curl up on a comfy chair and enjoy reading the book.

Step 2

After wistfully turning over the last page, write a brief message somewhere in the book (and maybe tweet a picture to @wanderread so it can be included here!)

Step 3

Pass the book on to someone — preferably an out-of-towner — whom you trust to follow these steps, too... assure that the book continues travelling far and wide!

The Journey

Questions & Answers


Do I have to send the book on by post?
No, not at all! You can pass the book on to friends and/or family, though we prefer you passing the book on to someone living out of town. We want the book to travel far and wide. If you do want to mail the book to someone, we have a list of interested parties from all over the world (map! Obviously, just the locations by city... we care about privacy!): Europe, the Americas, Oceania, Africa, and Asia. If you want to send the book to one of these Wander Readers, then tweet us a direct message with the location you would like to send it to. (And if you are (or know someone who is) located in one of the research stations in Antarctica, let us know!)


Don’t you want the author to make money through book purchases?
Yes, we would love the author to make a nice living from writing, so please go out and buy a copy if you can afford it! But foremost, books need to be read: that’s why we have libraries! This project mostly reaches two kinds of people: total fans who already have a copy, and interested people who we might convince to go and read some of the author’s other work. Wander & Read is not just about sharing a book, but about creating a meta-experience by sharing a book with other people through time and space.


How can I get in touch with you?
Follow Wander & Read on Twitter @wanderread. If you want us to put you on the list and map of potential “Wander Readers” (i.e., you would be interested to receive one of the books by post), then you will have to follow us! We need to be able to send you direct messages!