The Palm Beach County Literacy Coalition held a luncheon Friday to honor volunteers who teach children and adults to read.
More than 700 people attended the event.
The guest speaker was author Ann Patchett. She has written several best-selling books including Bel Canto and State of Wonder.
She says reading enriches lives: "I couldn't imagine being someone who did not have books to take refuge in and solace in. Books make us empathetic to people, they make us compassionate people because they put us into other people's lives. So it's entertainment, education and it's the constant expansion of your world."
Time Magazine named Patchett one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2012.