Libraries present ‘Big Read’

Features Ernest Gaines’ ‘A Lesson Before Dying’ during Feb.



FULTON COUNTY, Ga. – The Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System is the proud recipient of the 2013 Big Read grant, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts, in partnership with Arts Midwest, designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment.

The goal of the libraries aligns perfectly with those of the Big Read: to stop the decline of literary reading in America by encouraging reading. This “one book/one community” opportunity offers everyone the chance to read and discuss a single book within their communities and is a wonderful chance for real dialog.

Participants throughout Fulton County will read the same book, “A Lesson Before Dying” by Ernest Gaines. This story of injustice and redemption addresses the theme of how one affirms life in the face of death. “A Lesson Before Dying” was also made into a movie, and there will be film screenings at many of the libraries during February and into March as well as other programs and events. 

How can residents participate? All 34 libraries in the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System will have ways to engage with book club events, film screenings, contests, exhibitions and theatrical readings. They can also participate by encouraging book clubs, families and friends to pick up the book and read.

The library system is partnering with Fulton County Schools, which received 150 paperbacks for students to read. Students will also have a chance to meet the author virtually, as he will be brought in via satellite to provide an interactive presentation Feb. 26. This event will be streamed on the library’s website as well.

For a full list of programs surrounding the Big Read, check out

View desktop version