Booking time with authors
Local authors will be entertaining thousands of schoolchildren this week in the hope of inspiring them to pick up a book.
The annual event, called Whatever It Takes, is a campaign to improve literacy levels throughout the city, and is now in its fourth year.
More than 4,000 pupils from primary schools will visit Leicester Tigers' ground to take part in workshops with authors, including city-based children's writers Steve Skidmore and Bali Rai.
Bali has written several books for children, including City of Ghosts, while Steve, and his writing partner, Steve Barlow, have written more than 130 comedy books under the name the 2 Steves.
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Steve Skidmore, from South Knighton, who travels across the world promoting reading to children, said: "It's about getting children to enjoy reading, rather than them thinking it's something they have to constantly analyse.
"You have to hook them in and get their enthusiasm and one way we've been able to do that is through humour. It doesn't matter which part of the world they're from, children laugh at the same things.
"I'm really looking forward to seeing them and re-enacting stories and being active."
The authors will talk about how they come up with ideas for stories, what inspires them, and encourage youngsters to write down their ideas, showing them how they can be developed.
Schools will receive a pack of reading resources to take back with them and use in the classroom.
Catherine Infants School pupils, in Belgrave, are among those looking forward to their visit.
Teacher Jill Harrold said: "Our pupils really enjoyed their visit last year, finding it a great experience. This year, we're going to meet author Sarah McIntyre, author of You Can't Eat a Princess.
"The pupils have been finding out about her and are really excited to meet her in person."
Bill Morris, chairman of Whatever It Takes, and director of Leicester's Education Improvement Partnership, which organises the event, said: "The authors we invite are of the highest quality and the response we had is sensational.
"Pupils leave the event buzzing with excitement and on a mission to read other books the author has written."
Several new authors have also been invited to take part in the event, including Sarwat Chadda, author of Ash Mistry and the Savage Fortress, and Conrad Mason, who wrote The Demon Watch.
The event is supported by city libraries, Leicester Tigers and Roving Books.