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The Great American Read @ Your Library

The Great American Read logo

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. 


Through a grant made possible by PBS and the American Library Association, Washington County Free Library has the opportunity to bring the Great American Read to you before it airs on TV! Together, we can watch, learn more about our favorite novels, and share how each story has shaped us!


Wednesdays from August 1 to September 12 from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Community Room 308/309

August 1:
Come watch the premiere of PBS's "The Great American Read" and learn more about the programs we will host based on screenings of each episode. We will explore the books that have shaped up as individuals.

August 8:
Watch short videos produced by PBS which delve deeper into different Great American Read books and authors, and discuss the books on the list in detail.

August 15:
The "Who Am I?" special look at personal growth from reading fiction. We will explore how books about self-discovery have led to a greater understanding of our own journeys.

August 22:
The "Heroes" special looks at the types of heroic characters and the power of modeled strength. We will explore and discuss the heroes of literature that we are drawn to at different points in our lives and the inspiration that they bring to us as readers.

August 29:
The "Villains and Monsters" special explores the darker side of humanity and the monsters we imagine which explore the depths of emotion. We will explore and discusse the villains and monsters of literature that we are repulsed by or, perhaps, to which we are drawn.

September 5:
"What We Do for Love" will look at the challenges, undercurrents, and moral codes of love in both popular literature, and our everyday lives. We will explore and discuss how these books have helped our understanding of our own relationships.

September 19:
The "Other Worlds" special will capture our imaginations. We will explore what we gain from stories set in new worlds and what those stories can teach us about our own world.

Tuesdays in September and October:
PBS will air these episodes. During that time, share your favorite stories with family, friends, or on social media! We will host our own county-wide poll to select the Washington County Top 10 and see how it compares to the Top 10 Book as chosen by the nation!

Tuesday, October 30:
How did our library Top 10 Reads compare to the nation's Top 10 Reads? We will look at these top titles, the impact of these stories on popular culture, and how we can pass our love of these books along to future generations in a creative way!

Registration is not required, but is appreciated!