Author Meleri Wyn James (Image: Reading Wales)

An Aberystwyth author has produced the first ever Welsh book to be offered to children on World Book Day.

The Daily Post reported “Meleri Wyn James – who has previously published over 25 books – has written the first ever Welsh-language World Book Day story.

Across Wales, schools have celebrated the globally recognised event for over 20 years, but have previously only had access to English language titles as part of the special promotions.

But this year marks the first time a Welsh language publication has been included in the range of special £1 books that are published as part of the UK-wide campaign.

Na, Nel!: Un Tro… written by James and illustrated by John Lund, will be published by Welsh printing and publishing company Y Lolfa, in time for World Book Day celebrations on 1 March 2018.

The book from the Na Nel! series to be offered on World Book Day 2018 (Image: Reading Wales)

The book will follow the adventures of Nel, the mischievous girl who appears in the popular Na, Nel! series.

It will capture the fun and playfulness of the stories and encourage children to go on to read the other books in the series. In the new book, Nel will cast herself in the middle of the story once again and show how mischief follows her wherever she goes.

The book’s author, Meleri Wyn James said: “I’ve loved reading and writing since I was a child, and now I love reading with my own children and sharing the Na, Nel! stories with young readers all over Wales.

“It’s an honour that Nel’s original adventures have been chosen as the first Welsh-language book to be part of World Book Day this year.

“I hope that children will seize the opportunity to buy Nel’s latest adventure for a £1 and that it will encourage them to read more of Nel’s stories and to dip into the wealth of Welsh books which are available to children today.”

Angharad Sinclair, Reading Promotions Project Manager for the Welsh Books Council, said: “It’s such a pleasure to include a Welsh-language book for the first time for World Book Day.

“The Na Nel! series is extremely popular and proves that original series can hold their own and sell really well.”

World Book Day was designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and is marked in over 100 countries around the globe.

A main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own.

In Wales, the campaign is coordinated by the Welsh Books Council and supported by the Welsh Government and Waterstones” here.

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