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Many of our state’s libraries are participating in The Great American Read project! Scroll down to the "Events in North Carolina" section of this page to find out more about their events & programs.
The Great American Read

Grand Finale

The final episode will celebrate all 100 books and unveil the #1 best-loved book.

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ is an eight-part series that explores and celebrates the power of reading, told through the prism of America’s 100 best-loved novels (as chosen in a national survey). It investigates how and why writers create their fictional worlds, how we as readers are affected by these stories, and what these 100 different books have to say about our diverse nation and our shared human experience.

The television series features entertaining and informative documentary segments, with compelling testimonials from celebrities, authors, notable Americans and book lovers across the country. It is comprised of a two-hour launch episode in which the list of 100 books is revealed, five one-hour theme episodes that examine concepts common to groups of books on the list, and a finale, in which the results are announced of a nationwide vote to choose America’s best-loved book.

Download a PDF list of the 100 books here.

Explore More from The Great American Read

How Many Books Have You Read?

Have you read all 100 books? Find out by taking the reading scorecard quiz to get your score and share with your friends!

Meet the host, Meredith Vieira

As host, Meredith Vieira will take viewers on a journey across the country to uncover the nation’s 100 most-loved novels.

Join the Book Club

Get ready to read and discuss the novels, go to Facebook to join The Great American Read Book Club.

EVENTS IN NORTH CAROLINA:
Map of NC with location markers for events in NC
Ashe County Public Library

Ashe County Public Library


Program/Plans: Appalachian Regional Library libraries in Ashe, Watauga, and Wilkes Counties will host events through October that encourage its communities to engage with the 100 Great American Read selections in a variety of ways. Events include a pre-broadcast screening of the two-hour premiere (May), a cosplay contest (June), a battle of the books debate (July), a children's book cover trading card design contest (August & September), an ongoing March Madness-style voting event for both an ARL Great American Read and the national-level PBS Great American Read (May-October) and lunch & learns that focus on the five main themes of PBS’s Great American Read program (September & October).

Contact: Laura McPherson (LMcPherson@arlibrary.org)
Chapel Hill Public Library

Chapel Hill Public Library


Program/Plans: Chapel Hill Public Library proposes a five-part series of programs in partnership with Carolina Public Humanities (CPH), a unit of the College of Arts and Sciences at UNC-Chapel Hill. Each program will focus on one of the five key themes of the series and will feature local authors, UNC scholars and community members who have subject matter expertise and/or represent community/non-profit/arts organizations associated with one of the five themes. All programs are panel discussions with moderators and one to two authors, one scholar and one community member, plus possibly one more depending on topic. Programs start at 6:30 PM.

6/21 What We Do for Love
7/12 Heroes
8/23 Other Worlds
9/13 Who Am I?
11/8 Villains

9/5 11:30-12:30 Books Sandwiched In book club meeting discussion about Curious Incident.

Chapel Hill Public Library will also engage and enlist several local authors, many of whom—Daniel Wallace, Sarah Dessen, Lee Smith, Sue Monk Kidd—have national and international reputations. Chapel Hill Public Library has strong working relationships with a wide range of local authors as well as the three local independent booksellers.

Contact: Tracy Babiasz (tbabiasz@townofchapelhill.org)
Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library


Programing/Plans: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library created a book list in its catalog of all of the titles, and is publishing a blog post on its website this week, which will be shared on social media spaces. Charlotte Mecklenburg Library will also do some social media posts throughout the campaign about specific titles, share any testimonials received, remind people to vote and promote the PBS episodes. Charlotte Mecklenburg Library has also suggested that staff speak to customers about voting and the 100 books, and asked staff to try getting a recording/image, if possible.

Contact: Katy Rust (krust@cmlibrary.org)/Ann Stawski (astawski@cmlibrary.org)
Durham County Library

Durham County Library


Program/Plans: Durham County Library presents Summer Reading 2018: Libraries Rock!, free and open to all ages, through August 11 (sign up online at DurhamCountyLibrary.org/SummerReading or at any Durham County Library location). Free programs are offered throughout the summer at Durham County Library locations and throughout the community, many featuring music in connection to this year’s Libraries Rock! Theme. You’ll have the chance to win some awesome prizes by reading and completing activities throughout the summer! Sign up now and start earning points by reading, attending library programs, visiting different libraries, exploring a library database or electronic resource, volunteering in the community and attending musical concerts in the community. Also, the popular Summer Fine Read Down is back—reduce your library fines by reading. Just bring your reading materials to the information desk at a Durham County Library, sign in with a librarian each time you want to participate and read at the library. Share Summer Reading photos on social media using #DCLLibrariesRock.

Contact: Carmen Ruth (cruth@dconc.gov)/Stephanie Bonestell (sbonestell@dconc.gov)
Fontana Regional Library

Fontana Regional Library


Program/Plans: The Fontana Regional Library will use the top 100 novels in America from The Great American Read as a starting point and guide to books for participants in the Adult Summer Reading program, now through August 28. Fontana Regional Library offers incentive prizes for the number of books read and prompt sheets handed in for each book. The program will open with a starter packet that contains all the information and tools necessary for the participants to succeed. The library will keep track on tally sheet of the progress being made by each participant and use the prompt sheets throughout to garner interest with occasional emails with quotes from other members, program updates, and encouraging statements. Fontana Regional Library will have three levels of prizes and one master prize for the individual that reads the most out of all participants. Patrons will be encouraged patrons to follow along with the PBS series on their own and vote for their favorite novel both national and locally. Fontana Regional Library will tally local votes and books read to have a snapshot of what the people of Jackson County find is “America’s Best-Loved Book” versus the national outcome.

Contact: Danielle Duffy (dduffy@fontanalib.org)
Watauga County Public Library

Watauga County Public Library


Program/Plans: Appalachian Regional Library libraries in Ashe, Watauga, and Wilkes Counties will host events through October that encourage its communities to engage with the 100 Great American Read selections in a variety of ways. Events include a pre-broadcast screening of the two-hour premiere (May), a cosplay contest (June), a battle of the books debate (July), a children's book cover trading card design contest (August & September), an ongoing March Madness-style voting event for both an ARL Great American Read and the national-level PBS Great American Read (May-October) and lunch & learns that focus on the five main themes of PBS’s Great American Read program (September & October).

Contact: Laura McPherson (LMcPherson@arlibrary.org)
Wilkes County Public Library

Wilkes County Public Library


Program/Plans: Appalachian Regional Library libraries in Ashe, Watauga, and Wilkes Counties will host events through October that encourage its communities to engage with the 100 Great American Read selections in a variety of ways. Events include a pre-broadcast screening of the two-hour premiere (May), a cosplay contest (June), a battle of the books debate (July), a children's book cover trading card design contest (August & September), an ongoing March Madness-style voting event for both an ARL Great American Read and the national-level PBS Great American Read (May-October) and lunch & learns that focus on the five main themes of PBS’s Great American Read program (September & October).

Contact: Laura McPherson (LMcPherson@arlibrary.org)