The Reading


By Sophia Burridge

Every year since 2008, The Library of Congress and the Children’s Book Council awards a National Ambassador of Young People’s Literature. This year, Gene Luen Yang, had the honor of being awarded the title. Each ambassador gets to pick a platform, and Gene has chosen to do something called the Reading Without Walls Challenge.

The Reading Without Walls Challenge is a challenge to read a book outside of your comfort zone. You should read a book with a character that does not relate to you in any way, or read about a topic that you don’t know about or that you only know about a little bit. For example, you could read a book about sports if you don’t like sports. If you don’t like non-fiction books, read one! If your favorite book is fantasy, read a realistic fiction book! You could also read about a book with a format that you don’t necessarily like. Read a graphic novel if you only read chapter books.

“When you finish, take a photo with you and the book (or just the book if you’re shy) and post it on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #ReadingWithoutWalls. You’ll inspire others to do the same!” Gene says. The whole point of doing this is to connect kids with books so they can explore all kinds of books, and read more.

He encourages people to read as many books as they can for this challenge. “Read without walls and see what happens. I bet it’ll be something amazing!” Gene says. You can find more information about this topic at

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