You know how certain books become lifelong friends? How they see you through rough patches or high points? How you know all their odd little characteristics and love them anyway? How you turn to them at certain times – even though there may be younger, less jaded and less familiar books on your shelves?
Well, the Goethe Institut has come up with a lovely idea to get people thinking about their favourite books. Called Geschichte einer Freundschaft (story of a friendship), it's a competition that anyone can enter. All you have to do is tell them about your favourite book originally written in German, and you have a chance of winning a trip to Sicily - or an 1840 twenty-volume edition of Goethe's works. And, er, you have to tell them in German. But you have until August to do it, so book those language lessons now!
They say they'll pick the winners from the "most convincing, charming, passionate testimonies" and publish a selection of the texts in a book.