Saturday, November 12, 2011
By Ben Beagle firstname.lastname@example.org
BATAVIA — The “A Tale for Three Counties” community reading project will reach a milestone Monday when it announces the author and title for 2012.
The selection will be the project’s 10th.
“I truly cannot believe we’ve done this for 10 years,” said Leslie DeLooze, the librarian at Richmond Memorial Library who started the program in 2003 with public libraries in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties.
Richmond Library, 19 Ross St., will be one of four venues hosting a special announcement party.
The events, all scheduled for 7 p.m., are also planned at Genesee Community College’s Rosalie “Roz” Steiner Art Gallery, adjacent to the Center for the Arts, 1 College Rd.,; Lee-Whedon Memorial Library, 620 West Ave., Medina; and Perry Public Library, 70 North Main St., Perry. All events are open to the public.
In addition to revealing the 2012 pick, the events will include door prizes, including a copy of the book, books for sale, related refreshments and decorations that give hints about the book’s content and cover.
Following Monday’s announcement, readers will spend the next several months reading and talking about the book. The author is scheduled to visit in March 2012 for a series of talks and booksignings.
“We are thrilled to be in the 10th year of ‘A Tale for Three Counties,'” said Peggy Parker, director of Perry Public Library. “We add new readers every year.”
Parker plans to read brief passages from the book.
The GCC event will feature a reading from the first chapter.
“The settings, characters and themes in the book should spark a lot of interest both within the college community, and readers across the three counties,” said Nina Warren, director of library services at GCC.
Tale, which started in 2003 with Minnesota author Leif Enger and his acclaimed debut novel, “Peace Like a River, encourages readers in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties to read the same book, come to a discussion event, and then meet the author during a series of visits to each county. The goal is to foster literacy, promote discussion among all kind of people and create a positive experience for the community.
Books are chosen based on acclaim received from reviews or awards, an accessibilty to readers of many ages, a story that encourages the discussion of literature and a theme that includes small town or rural family life. Tale organizers seek out upcoming authors, or authors that are not as well known among area readers. It is also important that the author be available to participate in a series of visits.
“We have reached the 10th year of this project through persistence and sheer hard work, but it has helped us that the reading public is squarely behind this and is always cheering us on,” DeLooze said.
Previous titles have been “Peace Like a River” by Leif Enger, “Northern Borders” by Howard Frank Mosher, “A Bleak Midwinter” by Julia Spencer-Fleming, “A Northern Light” by Jennifer Donnelly, “An Unfinished Life” by Mark Spragg, “The Last Town on Earth” by Thomas Mullen, “Separate From the World” by P.L. Gaus, “The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein and “Mudbound,” an acclaimed debut by Hillary Jordan.
Many of the Tale authors have had even greater success following their Tale appearances. Spencer-Fleming has won several coveted awards for mystery writers, and Jordan’s “Mudbound” follow up, the just released “When She Woke,” has been one of the best-reviewed books of fall.
Tale began announcing its selections with a coordinated event three years ago. Since then, the project has “gained new recognition in each of the counties,” Parker said. “It’s a way for more to participate without having to travel far.”
Past ‘Tale’ Selections
Past authors and their featured books for the “A Tale for Three Counties” community reading project in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties:
2011: Hillary Jordan, “Mudbound.”
2010: Garth Stein, “The Art of Racing in the Rain.”
2009: P.L. Gaus, “Separate From the World.”
2008: Thomas Mullen, “The Last Town on Earth.”
2007: Mark Spragg, “An Unfinished Life.”
2006: Jennifer Donnelly, “A Northern Light.”
2005: Julia Spencer-Fleming, “In the Bleak Midwinter.”
2004: Howard Frank Mosher, “Northern Borders.”
2003: Leif Enger, “Peace Like a River.”
Courtesy of Batavia Newpapers Corporation