Presented in partnership with the Maine State Library and the Portland Public Library
Read ME is a new statewide summer reading program that gets Maine’s adults all reading the same books—by Maine authors and recommended by a Maine author, no less. It’s so easy, you can’t NOT do it!
- Connect Maine’s adult reading community through shared reading experiences.
- Support libraries in their work to provide quality adult summer reading initiatives.
- Elevate upcoming Maine authors.
All participating libraries need to do is showcase and make available two books (one fiction—Unknown Caller by Debra Spark, one nonfiction—The Moth: 50 True Stories) by new or lesser-known Maine authors which have been recommended by Monica Wood (The One-in-a-Million Boy, When We Were the Kennedys, Any Bitter Thing, Ernie’s Ark). We encourage participating libraries to run programs related to these texts throughout the summer months. The season will culminate in a large public event (date and location TBD) where the authors will be interviewed live in front of an audience.
Monica’s picks (and why she picked ’em)
FICTION: Unknown Caller by Debra Spark
“I was up all night with this riveting, gorgeously written novel about a married couple, an unpredictable ex-wife, and a recently discovered daughter. Spark tells their story in reverse order, each chapter revealing layers of insight and intrigue as we backtrack through a complex constellation of relationships. No one I know writes with more depth and empathy about marriage and family. Her emotional intelligence is astounding.”
NONFICTION: The Moth: 50 True Stories
“Originally presented live without notes, the stories in The Moth span the breadth of human experience. A cardiac emergency in a stuck elevator. A famous rap artist saved from despair by music far outside his sphere. A difficult adoption story that finds rest and resolution in Maine. By turns poignant and comical, tragic and triumphant, these stories, told mostly by ordinary folks, made me feel less alone in this huge world. I hope this book choice will inspire “Moth nights” all over Maine, because we Mainers are born storytellers.”
What we expect of participating libraries
- Must be willing to purchase at least one copy of each recommendation. We are offering book purchasing through MHC/MSL to get bulk ordering discounts.
- We will provide posters and bookmarks.
- Use posters to promote Read ME and connect your library with the statewide community.
- Distribute bookmarks to your patrons.
- Promote the final culminating statewide event to your patrons.
- Help promote other participating libraries’ special events
- Track circulation of featured texts and program attendance if any are offered.
- Complete and submit end of summer survey/evaluation.
- March 31: Deadline to apply
- April: Books ordered and posters delivered to participating libraries
- May: Books delivered
- June – August: Program takes place
- August: Culminating live event (date and location TBD)
- September: Final survey due