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Pharrell Releases “Happy”-Themed Children’s Book to Promote Reading Among Youths

Cute boy reading book in libraryWhen it comes to R and B superstar Pharrell Williams, the only thing bigger than his infamous brown hat is his heart.

According to Billboard, the 42-year-old singer and producer is teaming up with his book publisher to launch a “Happy” campaign that will include a children’s book based on his 2014 smash hit of the same title.

Williams has partnered with publisher Penguin Young Readers and non-profit literacy organization FirstBook to make the project a reality.

As if investing the resources to create the children’s book wasn’t enough, Pharrell decided to donate up to 50,000 copies to underprivileged youths whose parents wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford it.

“Every child on this planet deserves to experience the joy of reading,” Pharrell said in a statement issued through Penguin.

Reading among children has seen a drastic decrease in the past 15 years. In 1999, children ages two to seven were read to for an average of 45 minutes per day. In 2013, that number dropped to an average of 30 minutes per day.

According to GlobalGrind, the music mogul is implementing social media to get the attention of children. Any time the hashtag #ReadHAPPY is used on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, a book will be donated to a lucky child through FirstBook.

“I love what I do and am grateful to all the people who felt that ‘Happy’ resonated with them. My hope is that this book inspires a child’s imagination and creativity and that it teaches the importance of being happy and true to yourself,” Williams said.

Pharrell is promoting the book on his popular YouTube channel, i am Other. Vignettes for the book were posted that feature adorable children explaining why they love to read.

“I get to explore and see what I can find in the books and learn something from it,” said one little girl in a video.

Fans are encouraged to share thoughts and imaged explaining why reading makes them happy to include with their hashtag.

The “Happy” children’s book was released on Oct. 6. Clap along if you feel like literacy is for you.