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It’s a novel discovery for bride Ashley on the way to reception

By Colin O'Carroll

A bride coming from her wedding got another gift on her big day as she was one of 100 lucky people who found a copy of a book as part of the One City One Book initiative treasure hunt.

One hundred copies of the novel at the centre of this month's One City One Book Belfast 2012 campaign were left in secret locations on Saturday for members of the public to find and keep.

Belfast City Hall, Lyric Theatre, Culturlann McAdam O Fiaich and Malone House were among the places where copies of Glenn Patterson's latest novel The Mill For Grinding Old People Young were found, as well as public parks, literary landmarks and community centres.

Newlywed bride Ashley Jordan found a copy of the book in Botanic Gardens in Belfast en route to her wedding reception.

She said: “I was looking for my husband and I found this book.”

It’s not clear if she’ll get time to read it on her honeymoon.

Literature lovers were out in force over the weekend in search of the books hidden right across Belfast.

Saturday's Great Literary Book Hunt is one of a number of events happening this month as part of the Arts Council initiative designed to encourage reading and discussion on locally produced writing.

Noirin McKinney, director of arts development at the Arts Council, said: “We’ve been overwhelmed with the response we received to the book hunt.

“This initiative is all about encouraging reading and celebrating the great writers we have here.

“The novel we’ve chosen as the focus of this programme is set in historical Belfast and we think it is a story which will have wide appeal, with its references to local people, places and past events.

“We hope all of our 100 successful book-hunters treasure this literary gem.”

Colette Warren, a student nurse, found her book in Ormeau Park.

She said: “As I'm studying at the moment, I don't have a lot of time for reading but when I do I normally read books by authors like Martina Cole. I was surprised to find the book this morning in the park and I want to read it, especially because it's all about Belfast.”

One City One Book Belfast 2012 continues throughout May with a month-long programme of talks, tours, film screenings and exhibitions.

The programme is supported by Libraries NI, Belfast City Council, Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Queen's University, Faber & Faber and the Belfast Telegraph.

For more information visit or @ArtsCouncilNI

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