"Reading is the emphasis of the initiative," she said. "When reading is fun, that's going to be the most effective way to inspire students to read. You hear it time and again from students and parents, how this experience is a life-changing event that resonates. It does so for a couple of reasons: it inspires the reluctant reader to read, and it provides a challenge for avid readers to read more. At every stage, it teaches the students how to work together. It's a lot of work to read 16 books, but the reward that culminates in an evening like this is tremendously gratifying to everyone involved."