New Hanover County Announces “Read across the County” Initiative

Posted May 21, 2021 at 9:18 am     Category: LibraryNews Release

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – New Hanover County Public Library, the Office of Diversity and Equity, and Friends of the Library are partnering on a “Read across the County” initiative to bring people of different races and ages together for a community-wide summer of reading.

Read across the County will run from June through August and offers citizens the opportunity to participate in a variety of programs and discussions tied to three books that illustrate the power of nature and relationships to inspire people of all ages in widely different circumstances.

The three books are: Ruby’s Birds by Mya Thompson (for children eight and younger), Someday Birds by Sally J. Pla (for youth ages eight to 12), and The Home Place by J. Drew Lanham (for teens and adults).

“This is our first community-wide reading initiative through the Public Library, and we hope it inspires individuals of all ages and backgrounds to read one – or all – of these books,” said New Hanover County Public Library Director Paige Owens. “We also want to get individuals and families into nature to have new experiences, and to celebrate the diversity within our community. So we are collaborating with the Arboretum and New Hanover County Parks and Gardens for events and activities outdoors, and will have virtual author visits for residents to discuss each book with their authors starting in June.”

All three books can be checked out at a New Hanover County Public Library and are being distributed throughout the community with help from community partners. The Home Place and The Someday Birds are both available for immediate check out through Hoopla Digital (sign up for free with your library card). Residents can also place holds on the selected titles now by visiting or searching the library catalog.

“Birding, connecting with nature, diversity, togetherness, and finding your identity are themes throughout all three books,” said Chief Diversity and Equity Officer Linda Thompson. “No matter your age, one of these books will resonate with you, make you think about what your “spark moment” is – as Ruby has in the book Ruby’s Birds, and think about your own life – your place of belonging, and how you can embrace those around you and be more inclusive. It is our hope that this initiative promotes the joy of reading, allows for even more open and honest dialogue, and creates a shared reading experience across our entire community to help bind us together.”

Learn more about Read across the County, see the schedule of author visits, and view other events at


« Back to news overview

Communications and Outreach: 230 Government Center Drive, Suite 195 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7461 • Fax 910-798-7277
Skip to content