Naperville READS Announces its 2013 Authors
A story about the importance of choosing kindness and a novel about the horrors of the Rwanda genocide will be what everyone in Naperville is reading as Naperville READS kicks off its 12th year. First time novelists R.J. Palacio and Naomi Benaron have been selected as the featured authors for Naperville READS 2013.
As they have since the program’s inception in 2002, the goals of Naperville READS include engaging the entire community in reading and then discussing selected titles. The program promotes the pleasures of reading as well as providing a way for all ages to discuss the issues and concepts involved in the selected titles. This year’s selected authors brilliantly carry out these goals. In her instant classic, “Wonder” R.J. Palacio captures both the difficulty and the importance of choosing kindness. Prize-winning author Naomi Benaron explores the complexities of the Rwandan genocide in “Running the Rift.”
“Wonder” is Palacio’s first novel. The story of August “Auggie” Pullman is more than just the struggle of a boy born with severe facial deformities as he begins attending public school. It includes the uncertainties of his parents about how to cope with strangers reacting to Auggie’s face as well as the toll this places on his older sister. Labeled a young adult book,” Wonder” is really a story for families to read and discuss. Palacio will visit Naperville in early February and will make presentations to area fifth graders as well as the public.
The horrors of the Rwandan genocide and the importance of family and hope are the two conflicting themes that see-saw back and forth in Benaron’s debut work of fiction. This novel clearly depicts the violent civil war between Hutus-Tutsis but also lovingly describes the beauty of family and community. Benaron was awarded the prestigious Bellwether Prize for her treatment of compelling social issues. Benaron will visit Naperville in early April and will make presentations to area high schools as well as the public.
Previous Naperville READS authors have included Luis Alberto Urrea, Antonio Sacre, Anthony Horowitz, Jon Scieszka, Neil Gaiman, Gary Paulsen, Gary Moore, Daniel Pink, Brian Selznick, Dan Gutman, Pete Hamill, Jerry Spinelli, Kevin Henkes, Tracy Chevalier, Yann Martel, Katherine Hannigan, Kate DiCamillo, Joseph Bruchac, Greg Mortenson, Jodi Picoult and Lisa See.
Naperville READS is a partnership between Anderson’s Bookshop, Jumping Off the Page, Naperville Public Library, Naperville Community Unit School District 203 and Indian Prairie School District 204. The project is partially supported by a grant from the City of Naperville.
Additional and updated NapervilleREADS information may be see on the website, www.napervillereads.org or by contacting the Naperville Public Library, 630-961-4100 or Anderson’s Bookshop 630 355-2665.