rafe khatchadorian

Today’s top book news item:

James Patterson, king of the mass-market paperback, is offering to donate a book to every sixth grader in public school in New York City.

He plans to give out nearly 45,000 copies of his book Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life — in which Rafe Khatchadorian goes on a quest to break every rule in his school’s draconian Code of Conduct — to each student who asks for one across some 300 schools. In a press release, Patterson says, “I love New York City, and I’m so delighted to be sharing this gift of books and reading with the city’s sixth graders.” The books are meant to combat “summer slide” — when students lose much of what they learned during the year over the summer break. Patterson made a similar move in Chicago earlier this month, donating some 28,000 books to sixth graders in public schools there.