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on 9 January 2001
This book has turned many heads in France with its radical and novel ideas on reading. It is not so much a novel, rather than an essay. Pennac uses it as a means to show us his dislike of the eductaional system in France and his views on how reading should be an enjoyable pastime, not something that you are forced to do. It is a vehicle to launch an indirect attack on the conventional attitudes in French society.
His witty writing style, coupled with many amusing anecdotes uses to express his opinions make this book a very enjoyable and eye-opening read. Perhaps the most fascinating part of the book is Pennac's 'Droits imprescritibles du lecteur'. He claims that all readers have the right to skip pages if they want, to decide not to finish a book, to re-read a book, to read out loud and whereever they want.
Although eccentric, and sometimes even laughable at times, the issues and points he raises in this book are without a doubt very true. We can learn a lot from this book on how, not just the French, but society on a global level needs to re-evaluate our attitudes towards teaching and encouraging children to read!
A great book - certainly worth a read!
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