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The Vital Link

The public libraries' reading campaign for adults, The Vital Link, is planning online resources for each Quick Reads book. Meanwhile, the campaign is compiling its own First Choice database, recommendations of mainstream books aimed at adult learners and emergent readers that combine crowd-pleasing interest level and high readability (clear typeface, 12pt or bigger, attractive layout). See www.vitallink.org.uk for the initial list of 80 First Choice titles from football to poetry and details of how to recommend books to add to it, and use the Smog (simplified measure of gobbledegook) method to assess how difficult a book is to read (you need to be fairly numerate, but the site has worked out the square roots for you).

The Vital Link is aimed at library and adult literacy professionals, with sections for adult learners, but much of it is useful to schools.

On the same site you'll find details (including more booklists) of the Got kids? Get reading! campaign, aimed at parents and carers with low literacy who want to share books with their children aged up to seven.

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