I think we can all agree on how much we all love Marcus Rashford? Or nearly all.
Here is his first book, You Are a Champion, written with Carl Anka, on how to improve your life. There are many such books, many of them really good. But I imagine that for a young reader, following the advice of a hero like Marcus will be more attractive, and therefore, more likely to have an effect. I hope so, anyway.
Marcus seems to be singlehandedly feeding the nation’s children. And now he’s going to help those children to books and reading as well. It’s not what we’ve come to first expect of successful footballers, but then, as Marcus says, why not? They are in a position to reach out and have an impact; both with fans listening, and to some extent, the Prime Minister, if reluctantly.
This personal advice on how to try and make your life better is a good place to start.
After that, do as Marcus and read. He has admitted he only began reading five or six years ago, so it’s never too late. And now that children aren’t quite as hungry as they were, the reading might be easier.
Next, there will be books for many of those who need them most. In June the Marcus Rashford Book Club will put a lot of books within reach of thousands of children, starting with Pooja Puri’s A Dinosaur Ate My Sister, which sounds like a lot of fun. Except possibly for the sister.
Joining with the Magic Breakfast and Macmillan Children’s Books, there will be regular books for children.
I look forward to seeing more children loving reading, and hopefully learning to be as good as their inspiration. And I can’t stop thinking about how much we owe Marcus’s mother, for making him the kind of young man he is. Let her selfless hard work and sacrifices go much, much further.