2Book Topeka- a new spin on a community read

We are taking a different approach with our traditional community read.  Building off the success with The Big Read, we have decided to offer community reads several times in a year.

The planning team has chosen to call our project 2Book Topeka.

The goal of 2Book Topeka is to take titles that share a common theme, concept or writing style and present opportunities for the community to engage in collective reading.

Our goals are the following:

  • Introduce titles that are discuss-able but perhaps not considered literature in the same vein as the Big Read titles
  • Introduce titles that are approachable in that they may have been titles previously read for fun or escape
  • Introduce titles that share a common theme but come from a fiction perspective and a non-fiction perspective so we reach our non-fiction readers on occasion as well.
  • Introduce a writing style or narrative voice from different perspectives- we tossed around the theme strong male and strong female characters as one of the matches
  • Introduce titles that can reach families with similar themes but presented in an adult or young adult title and also a youth title
  • Send a very strong message that regardless of how many awards a book receives all books are worth reading and can be a great opportunity to engage in fun and lively discussions
  • Both books are read both months so it gives everyone a chance to fit it into their busy lives.

These are the titles we have selected for our first year
June/July- The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and the House of the Scorpion
October/November- The Devil in the White City and The Alienist
February/March (2018)- Ready Player One and Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library

The program plan is to offer up to three events focused on each series in addition to at least three book discussions.  Each title will have at least one stand-alone discussion and a discussion of the two books together will also be available.

We will also work with our Book Group in a Bag team to make sure we have book groups and also have up to 300 copies of each title available during each of the 2Book Topeka series.

For the selections in the spring 2018, we will be incorporating an opportunity for the community to help us select the titles and vote on the winning titles.

Our planning team includes Diana Friend, Cindy Hohl, Stephanie Teater, Anna Frantz, Kyle Moreland, Travis Garwood, Betty Jean Neal, Michelle Morris, Lisa Brien, Kelli Smith, Arion Beals, Jennifer Jones, Stephanie Hall and Marie Pyko.  Please feel free to ask anyone from the team questions or share ideas.

3 thoughts on “2Book Topeka- a new spin on a community read

  1. Lissa Staley on said:

    Love this!! I’m so excited for these community reads and I know customers will be too! (even if it’s going to mean I read things I wouldn’t normally choose. Or…especially because it means I will read things I wouldn’t normally choose!)

  2. Tierney on said:

    I love this…community engagement is so important (which is why it is one of the community impact goals). I cannot wait to support this endeavor.

  3. miranda-ericsson on said:

    I am so excited about this project! Having two community reads gives us so many more opportunities to engage readers in thoughtful discussion and comparison, and this is a great line-up of titles. I look forward to telling our readers all about it! 🙂