Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Transformative Power of Reading

Luis Soriano, a teacher from La Gloria, Columbia, packs his two burros with books to lend to villagers in the area. His "biblioburros" are much awaited and open doors to both the outside world and the world within. He has witnessed the "transformative power of reading" as a teacher and as a lender of books. Paul Coehlo's books are the most popular, but people read a vast array of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. He started the project himself. It has grown into a 4,800 volume collection thanks to donors. He has suffered physical injury and threats. Yet he continues because he knows that books and reading change people's lives. Read the New York Times story about Soriano here.

His story reminds me of author Margriet Ruurs' award-winning book for children, My Librarian is a Camel. Its text and photos show the unusual ways children receive books around the world. It also shows children's eagerness to read. See more about the book here.

We take for granted our ability to read and our access to print and online materials. Give thanks for the ways reading enriches our lives!


  1. Thanks Jane, for sharing my book. It's so exciting to get letters from schools about how they have 'adopted' libraries to send aid in the form of money or books.
    My next book will show how children around the world go to school. Stay tuned!

    Your friend in writing,

  2. Wonderful, Margriet! I look forward to your next book!