When we read together—when a grandfather reads to a granddaughter, when a teacher reads to a classroom, when a parent reads to a child, when a sister reads to a brother, when everyone in a town reads the same book silently, together—we are taken out of our aloneness. Together, we see the world. Together, we see one another. We connect. And when we connect, we are changed. — Kate DiCamillo
2017: Shadowshaperby Daniel José Older
The 2017 Read Brave book is Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older. Shadowshaper tells the story of Brooklyn teen Sierra, who inherits shadowshaping—a thrilling, creative magic—and becomes a target as a result. Older addresses issues of body image, cultural appropriation, feminism, and gentrification.
About Read Brave
Read Brave is Saint Paul Public Library’s annual, citywide program encouraging youth and adults to read and come together around a young adult novel. The program encourages intergenerational dialog about thought-provoking, contemporary issues facing teens and culminates with a visit by the author.
Each year, hundreds of copies of the Read Brave book are distributed to the community, primarily to teens in the Saint Paul Public School system. When teens own the book, they take ownership of the reading, get the thrill of a personalized autograph, and are able to share the book with friends and family.
YouMedia Radio interview
Listen to an interview with Marika Staloch, Youth Services Coordinator at SPPL, about what goes into organizing Read Brave, and how we work with teens and community partners to make it a transformative opportunity for the community. (25 minutes)
Previous Read Brave books:
- Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older
- Everybody Sees the Ants by A. S. King
- Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
- How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon
- Stick by Andrew Smith
Read Brave has fostered partnerships and programs with Avalon School, Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, Saint Paul Neighborhood Network, the Science Museum of Minnesota, Saint Paul Public Schools, adult and teen book clubs, Shakopee Women’s Prison, local booksellers, and Lady Gaga's Born Brave Bus tour. Avalon School received both state and national Promising Practices awards for their participation in the Saint Paul Public Library's Read Brave initiative.
Read Brave is a partnership between the Saint Paul Public Library, Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, and Saint Paul Public Schools. It is made possible by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
Read Brave 2016 is dedicated to Kit Hadley. Kit was the Director of Saint Paul Public Library for six years before her retirement in 2015. Kit is a brave and brilliant leader, and her support helped Read Brave become a reality.
Photo credits: Addendum Books and Marika Staloch.
Read Brave is on GoodReads