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Whatcom READS!

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A Book Group For the Whole Community!

Whatcom READS is a county-wide program that encourages everyone to read and discuss the same book. It is organized by all the public and academic libraries in Bellingham and Whatcom County and us, their community partner. They receive significant funding from Friends of the Bellingham Public Library and Whatcom County Library Foundation, and support from other local businesses and organizations.

Each year, a new book is selected by Whatcom READS organizers. Community members are encouraged to read or listen to the book, share it with family, friends and neighbors, and participate in programs and special events that follow the book’s themes. Each series culminates with a visit by the author of the selected book, who makes numerous free-of-charge public presentations at locations throughout the county.

Whatcom READS operates in partnership through a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a governing board that includes a representative from each partner organization.

The History

Through all the books explored and authors hosted, their goal has been simple: creating an annual literary happening that gets people talking about great literature and sharing the joy of reading and discussing books.

Whatcom READS was modeled after the highly successful Seattle Reads program, which began in the late ’90s and became a national phenomenon. Communities large and small across the country now host similar programs to wide acclaim.

Thanks to the dedication of their partners, the generosity of contributing business and organizations, and some really excellent visiting authors, they have become the premier literary series in our area.

Eowyn Ivey and her book To The Bright Edge of the World has been selected for Whatcom READS 2020. Watch the book trailer on YouTube.