Reading groups are proving that good books bring people together. National Reading Group Month salutes reading groups. It fosters their growth and promotes the love of literature. It’s an opportunity for reading groups to reflect on their accomplishments and plan for the future — the perfect time to join or start a group.
On this site you’ll find the story behind National Reading Group Month, a calendar of nation-wide events, and resources and tips for enhancing book discussions. Whether you’re a reading group member, author, bookseller, librarian, or publishing industry professional, get involved in National Reading Group Month. Celebrate the joy of shared reading.
National Reading Group Month is an initiative of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA). Founded in 1917, WNBA promotes literacy, a love of reading, and women’s roles in the community of the book.
Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read is observed during the last week of September each year. Observed since 1982, this annual ALA event reminds Americans not to take this precious democratic freedom for granted. This year, 2008, marks BBW’s 27th anniversary (September 27 through October 4).
Check out the American Library Association’s Banned Books Week Website for information about the most frequently challenged books and about how you can fight censorship in your community.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Check out this site for all kinds of information about breast cancer and how you can help in the fight against this disease.
‘State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America’ is an intriguing collection of essays and snapshots on the 50 states as seen through the eyes of 50 writers.
In a modern update of the series referred to in the previous post, Jeffrey Burke reviews the book State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America, edited by Matt Weiland and Sean Wilsey.
Weiland’s preface helpfully defines the intent: “a road trip in book form,” written by “our finest novelists and reporters.” Wilsey then goes on for 13 pages about a road trip he made in 2002 and makes no attempt to connect explicitly to the book’s mission. It’s a perfect warmup for the motley assemblage that follows.
Burke passes out several awards in the process of highlighting the eccentricities in this book–all of which make the book look like one well worth reading.
Eatonville, the first all-black town to incorporate in the country and the childhood home of Zora Neale Hurston, is no longer as simple as she described it in 1935: ‘the city of five lakes, three croquet courts, 300 brown skins, 300 good swimmers, plenty guavas, two schools and no jailhouse.’ It is now a place of pilgrimage. Alice Walker, Toni Morrison and Ruby Dee have come to the annual Zora! Festival in Eatonville to pay their respects to Hurston, the most famous female writer of the Harlem Renaissance.
This article is the sixth in a NY Times series highlighting the American Guide Series of travel books written during the Depression by the Federal Writers’ Project.
Given the recent public scuffle over Sarah Palin’s conversations while mayor with a Wasilla librarian about the possibility of banning books, there probably couldn’t be a better moment for the American Library Association’s Banned Books Week, which begins tomorrw, Sept. 27, and runs through Oct. 4.
Google makes it even easier for readers to part with their hard-earned cash:
Today, we’re taking a big step towards bringing more books, across more sites, to more people online.
We’re launching a set of free tools that allow retailers, publishers, and anyone with a web site to embed books from the Google Book Search index. We are also providing new ways for these sites to display full-text search results from Book Search, and even integrate with social features such as ratings, reviews, and readers’ book collections. By providing tools that help sites connect readers with books in new and interesting ways, we hope publishers and authors will find even wider audiences for their works.
Just in time to distract you from all the election mud-slinging comes this list, from the Seattle Times, of books being published this fall.
Stephen King turns 61 today. Long live the King.
The Mark Twain House in Hartford, CT, has for some time now been in financial trouble. The New York Times reports on the latest fund-raising effort aimed at saving it: “On Tuesday, Tom Perrotta, Tasha Alexander, Phillip Lopate and at least seven other nationally best-selling authors will gather in the auditorium to read Twain’s works.”
If you’ve never seen the Twain House in Hartford, don’t miss these photos.