Book Bench Project


Building communities one book at a time

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Book Bench Project Books

ABOUT The Book Bench Project

When I worked in New York City in the 1980s, I often left books I had finished reading on park benches. Usually, I’d write a line or two inside the front cover with my thoughts. I was quite thrilled to rediscover some of my books several months later on benches throughout the city. Even better, the inside covers were often bursting with readers’ comments. In an odd way. I felt an inexplicable bond with people I hadn’t met through a shared love of reading. Shortly thereafter, I moved to Canberra, where I still reside.

Decades later, COVID-19 ushered a climate of isolation and uncertainty, leaving people of all ages feeling disconnected. I had been writing on mental health issues for quite some time and thought there was no better time to reach out, to strike up a converation, to brighten someone’s day.

The Book Bench Project was born.

Books are plastic-wrapped and delivered rain or shine with an introductory card. (below)



This book is yours to take home.

When you’ve finished reading, please leave the book (preferably enclosed in plastic) for others to enjoy. We think a bench – at the shops, at an oval, in a park, at a bus stop – is an ideal spot.

We also think books are meant to be ‘lived in’ so feel free to record your thoughts for future readers (We suggest on the inside covers). No spoilers, please!

Have fun looking for more free books for young and old on Canberra park benches.



Big Ideas Press
The book Bench Project