As reported in Publishers Weekly and elsewhere, President Bush's proposed 2009 budget eliminates all funding for RIF, which has provided more than 325 million books to underprivileged children since 1966.
I grew up in a reading family and it wasn't until high school that I realized how unusual that apparently was, and the privilege I enjoyed. I am sure I would not be the person I am today if I had not been a reader from a young age and I'm already encouraging the younger generation of my family to join the reading club, mostly by keeping them well supplied with books. I highly doubt I'd be a literary agent if my parents had minded that I "borrowed" their library books before they had the opportunity to read the books themselves. Or if I had not had access to a generous school library. Reading habits start young.
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