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Mark the centenary of World War One with Quick Reads

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

This year it will be one hundred years since the start of the first World War and Quick Reads have worked with publishers HarperCollins and Cityread London to produce a fantastic literacy resource for the occasion. This resource contains specially edited extracts from the novel My Dear I Wanted to Tell You, by Louisa Young, which is set during the first World War and tells the story of two men who go off to fight, and the women they have left at home.

You can download this FREE resource here.

New NIACE Publication: Reading for Pleasure and Reading Circles for Emergent Adult Readers

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Reading for Pleasure and Reading Circles for Emergent Adult Readers
Insights in Adult Learning

Author: Sam Duncan
RRP: £7.95
Due: February 2014

This book addresses the need to support teachers in developing adults’ skills through reading for pleasure as an individual and group practice, incorporating the activity into the curriculum. It focuses on reading for pleasure for adult emergent readers – those who consider themselves non-readers either because they feel they cannot or do not read – and draws on the author’s research with adult readers and reading circles.

It will be of particular interest to adult literacy, functional skills and ESOL teachers/trainee teachers, adult literacy and ESOL teacher educators, librarians and community development professionals.

Please visit the NIACE bookshop for more information and to order your copy.

2014 titles and free ideas packs now available

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

The new 2014 Quick Reads titles are now available, including ideas packs for each title.

Quick Reads 2014 Evaluation Report

Friday, 31 January 2014

Once again, the 2014 Quick Reads Evaluation demonstrates they continue to have a positive impact on engaging and supporting adults with literacy and reading.   As one tutor put it, "I have noticed a confidence in students, who otherwise didn't read books. Many of them have realised how enjoyable it is to read. Most had tried, but failed because the books they had chosen were either to long or had complicated language. Once they started reading the Quick Reads they came back for more. I like to think the Quick Reads turn non-readers into readers."
Read the full report

Bestselling authors throw their support behind Quick Reads 2014

Friday, 6 September 2013

The new list of Galaxy® Quick Reads titles is announced today, to coincide with International Literacy Day on Sunday 8 September, with a host of bestselling authors penning books for the charity.

The books, which will be on shelves in February 2014, include:

  • Lynda La PlanteThe Escape
  • Lindsey DavisA Cruel Fate
  • Barbara Taylor BradfordHidden
  • Harriet EvansRules for Dating a Romantic Hero
  • Jeffrey ArcherFour Warned
  • Emily BarrBlackout

Next year will see Quick Reads continue its campaign to introduce more people to reading. Recent research indicates that as many as one in six adults struggling to read and that over a third of people (35.2%) never read a book for pleasure.

But it would seem that the books are successful at encouraging those who have trouble reading to pick up a book, with 69% of learners going on to read another Galaxy® Quick Reads book once finishing their first, and 68% attempting other books as a result of finishing a Galaxy® Quick Read.

Following a successful rebrand of the charity last year, the 2014 books will be the first to suggest onward reading – more titles from the same author.

Cathy Rentzenbrink, Project Director for Quick Reads, said:

"With one in six adults having difficulty reading, the scale of the challenge facing us is huge and Quick Reads is only made possible by the support of our partners. We've partnered with NIACE for many years now and the work it does with Quick Reads books is invaluable.

"It really is encouraging to see the impact Galaxy® Quick Reads books have on emerging readers and that they go on to try other books. This year, we want to make it as easy as possible to find another similar book, by the same author, which they can be confident they’ll enjoy which is why we’ve redesigned the book jackets to point readers in the right direction.

"I’m thrilled with our new list of authors, we’ve got a real mix of genres so there’s something for everyone whether you like thrillers, romantic comedies or historical stories. The authors have all come on board because they’re passionate about literacy so it’s great to have such well-known authors supporting the push to get more people enjoying reading.

"Our aim is to bring the pleasures and benefits of reading to everyone. With one in six adults having difficulty reading, the scale of the challenge facing us is huge and Quick Reads is only made possible by the support of our partners. We've partnered with NIACE for many years now and the work it does with Quick Reads books is invaluable.

"Every year we hear from adults whose lives and attitudes have been transformed by reading Quick Reads books – they're often the first book people have ever read – something I'm immensely proud about. I hope this year will see even more people discovering the pleasure reading can bring through Quick Reads."

Sue Southwood, NIACE Project Manager for Quick Reads Outreach Work, said:

"There have been many great initiatives in literacy learning and teaching over the years, but what was missing for so long were books, written at the right level for adults, by talented and best-selling authors that learners could get excited about. This is exactly what Quick Reads have brought and they have become an invaluable part of adult literacy learning in the 21st Century. Literacy tutors tell us that they don’t know how they got on without them.

"Each year there are new and exciting titles which invigorate learners and the list of authors for 2014 is one I know that people will be excited about. Couple these new Quick Reads with the learning materials that will be produced to support them and its quite clear that thousands more adults will become enthusiastic and invigorated readers and lovers of books, passing on this enthusiasm to their families and friends."

"Each year there are new and exciting titles which invigorate learners and the list of authors for 2014 is one I know that people will be excited about."

Barbara Taylor Bradford, one of the Quick Reads 2014 authors, said:

"I feel very passionate about encouraging people to pick up a book and read it which is why I was so pleased to be asked to write for Quick Reads. I really enjoyed writing the book and hope that it will make a real difference in introducing people to the pleasure that reading can bring."

For the fourth year running, Galaxy® is partnering with Quick Reads as the main sponsor. Emma Rees, Galaxy® Brand Director, said:

"Reading has always been important to us; we recognise the pleasure that can be gained by losing yourself in a great book and a bar of Galaxy®.

"This year, we're pleased to continue our support for Quick Reads. It's such a valuable initiative which makes a big impact in encouraging those who may have lost the habit of reading or who may feel intimidated by a longer book to pick up something manageable."

New pilot for Speaking and Listening Qualification

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

NIACE is working in partnership with Homeless Charities, Housing Associations and Children's Centres to engage hard to reach social groups who often fall through the cracks of traditional adult learning provision.

Five organisations have now been selected to pilot new Quick Reads Reading Groups, with learners being given the opportunity to achieve a new OCR Speaking and Listening Unit Qualification.

Starting in September, participants will receive free Quick Reads and learning resources to help them improve literacy levels, build confidence and develop analytical skills, supported by a professional reading consultant.

For further information, please email

Understanding Reading for Pleasure for emerging adult readers

Thursday, 21 March 2013

NRDC has carried out new research into reading for pleasure in the context of adult reading groups of emerging readers. It explores what reading for pleasure means, what people gain from reading and why they might benefit from reading in groups.

Quick Reads Impact Evaluation Report 2012-13

Thursday, 7 March 2013

This impact evaluation report is primarily based on an online survey of Quick Reads users sent out to NIACE, unionlearn and The Reading Agency’s network of organisations running its Six Book Challenge scheme.Read more

Quick Reads Evaluation Survey

Friday, 22 February 2013

317 people completed the Quick Reads online survey and we would like to thank everyone for their responses. Three lucky winners have been randomly selected and will soon receive the following prizes:

1st Prize: 48-book pack with 50 bookmarks, two posters and a display stand

2nd Prize: 24-book pack with 50 bookmarks and two posters

3rd Prize: One set of the new 2013 titles

The data collected will be used to inform the future development of Quick Reads and to evaluate our successes to date.

We are very grateful for your continued support. Happy reading!

Six new Quick Reads launched for 2013

Thursday, 14 February 2013

New research unveiled today shows that a quarter of UK adults (over 12 million people) have only picked up a book to read for pleasure once or less in the past six months. Nearly one in 10 adults claim they never read books (8%), with over a quarter (29%) of those who read once every six months or less citing time pressures as the reason.However, the statistics which reveal Britain’s ‘reading rut’ also illustrate the many personal and social benefits that reading for pleasure provides. Of those polled about reading for pleasure:

  • 53% said that reading made them feel more relaxed
  • 61% said if helped them switch off from their day-to-day life
  • 51% said they liked experiencing new stories
  • 40% said they felt like they learn new subjects
  • 32% said that finishing a book gives them the same or greater sense of achievement as they get by going to the gym

The findings come as Quick Reads – backed by actress Kara Tointon – launches a new set of bite-size books by renowned authors, including Andy McNab and Kathy Lette, in a bid to encourage more people to get into reading.This year’s Galaxy Quick Reads titles are:

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