Never-Ending Literary Treasure Hunt Has Kids Finding Hidden Books, Reading, Then Re-Hiding Them for Others

​Braidwood Hidden Books Facebook

A never-ending treasure hunt in a small New South Wales town has given new lives to thousands of books, and new smiles to as many children.

In the town of Braidwood, a tradition of hiding children’s books in plastic bags in unlikely places has grown out a pandemic tradition of hiding painted rocks.

Hidden in shop windows, among shrubs, in parks, or around town, a child who finds the book can choose either to take it home, or add their name to the list of past owners and re-hide the book for another kid to find.

Mom of 5 Samantha Dixon believed that it might be “more useful thing [than rocks] for children,” after seeing some similar community movements in other countries.

“It’s lovely to watch the little kids’ faces when they find the books, and it’s just a little bit more magical,” Dixon told ABC News Australia. “I enjoy the fact these books are being read and are not just being left on the shelves and that kids are outside finding them not on screens.”

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Inside a plastic bag is the book and a sheet that says: “You are the lucky finder of this book. Read it, enjoy it, and then rehide it for someone else to enjoy. Please reuse this bag.

“Add your name inside the cover and let’s see how many can find it!”

“We are passing through from Campbelltown and found this while we were waiting for our lunch,” wrote a member off the Braidwood Hidden Books Facebook Group. “Matilda had a flick through and rehid it on our way back to the car. Thanks for providing such a great and fun idea!”

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