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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Launches “Inspire Curiosity” Campaign to Encourage Literacy and Love of Reading

Global education leader Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today committed to donate up to 50,000 new children’s books as part of an “Inspire Curiosity” literacy campaign based on the children’s book classic Curious George by H. A. and Margret Rey. For every Curious George book purchased at a retail store, from May 1 through June 30, a book will be donated to a child in need, in partnership with literacy non-profit organization First Book.

“When you give a child a book you are giving them access to a world of possibilities and by sharing the world of Curious George we are teaching kids to explore that world,” said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book, “Giving up to 50,000 new books to kids in need will help create a huge group of lifelong learners who can discover new opportunities through reading.”

The dedicated “Inspire Curiosity” campaign will also feature several other activities and promotions, including:

  • A new scrapbook feature on — recent Webby nominee and Parent’s Choice Award winner — will invite parents and kids to create their very own digital, sharable family scrapbook by uploading photographs and creating personal drawings.
  • Curious George-themed sweepstakes for general consumers and a dedicated version for active National Education Association (NEA) members, featuring the chance to win an iPad® 2, free download codes for Curious George ebooks and apps, and deluxe Curious George prize packages. For further details on both sweepstakes, visit from May 1 to June 30. The NEA annual Read Across America calendar will also feature Curious George’s First Day of School as the August title for 2014-2015.
  • Curious George costume events at several bookstores and libraries throughout the U.S. during Children’s Book Week (May 12-18, 2014). Locations include Octavia Books in New Orleans, Louisiana; Square Books in Oxford, Mississippi; Fact & Fiction in Missoula, Montana; Page & Palette in Fairhope, Alabama; and the St. Louis County Library in St. Louis, Missouri. For more information on these events, visit

“Curious George is the perfect ambassador as HMH strives to inspire a lifelong love of reading and learning. His inquisitive nature and eager exploration of the world around him are traits invaluable to learning,” said Gary Gentel, President of HMH Trade & Consumer Publishing. “HMH is proud to partner with First Book, the NEA and others dedicated to encouraging family literacy.”

About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Trade & Consumer Publishing

For nearly two centuries, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Trade & Consumer Publishing division has published some of the world’s most renowned novels, non-fiction, children’s books and reference works in hardcover, trade paperback, and eBook formats. Its distinguished author list includes eight Nobel Prize winners, forty-seven Pulitzer Prize winners, thirteen National Book Award winners, and more than one hundred Caldecott, Newbery, Printz, and Sibert Medal and Honor recipients. HMH publishes such distinguished authors as Philip Roth, Temple Grandin, Tim O'Brien, and Umberto Eco, and a celebrated roster of children’s authors and illustrators including Lois Lowry, Chris Van Allsburg and David Wiesner. HMH is also home to The Best American series®; The American Heritage® and Webster’s New World™ dictionaries; Betty Crocker®, Better Homes and Gardens®, How to Cook Everything®, The Gourmet Cookbook, and other leading culinary properties; the Peterson Field Guides®; CliffsNotes; books by J.R.R. Tolkien; and many iconic children’s books and characters including Curious George®, The Little Prince and The Polar Express. For more information, visit

About First Book

First Book is a nonprofit social enterprise that has distributed more than 115 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. By making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis, First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education. For more information, please visit them online or follow the latest news on Facebook and Twitter.

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