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Library challenges individuals, groups to read 150 books in 2013

Read any good books lately? How about reading 150 of them this year?

That's what the Kanawha Library is challenging people to do. But in this project that celebrates West Virginia's 150th birthday, participants can get a little help from their friends.

Terry Wooten, the library's marketing and development manager, said groups are encouraged to sign up and combine their biblio efforts to get to the goal.

"You can have up to 15 members on your team," Wooten said. "Our Friends group here at the library has formed a team."

Wooten, who logs about a book a month personally, intends to contribute those pages read to her group.

"When you do it that way, it's about 10 books per person for the year," she said.

Book groups are invited to join and compile books read by all members for the year.

There's nothing to keep individuals from signing up, Wooten said, but joining forces with others makes the goal more reachable.    

About 10 teams have registered so far, but Wooten said library staff has taken plenty of calls from readers about the program and they expect more participants.

In 2009, the library held a similar program, challenging patrons to check out 100 books in conjunction with its own 100th birthday. About 600 of them did it and received a gold library card as a reward.

"For that project they had to check the books out of the library," Wooten said, "But this time it can be any book."

And actually, you don't even have to read the book for it to go on your list. Audio books count. And reading a book to someone else counts for both the reader and the listener.

"Any book counts," Wooten said. "If a family wants to have a team and there are children too young to read, they don't have to read it themselves.

"We really want to celebrate the state's 150th birthday and get as many people reading as possible."  

Registration forms can be obtained at the main library or any branches, or on the library website,

The website also has answers to some frequently asked questions, a log to help keep track of books read and even suggestions of what to read.

Groups are to designate a team leader, who will keep a list and submit it to the library at the end of December. The leader will get news and encouragement via emails.

Information and updates is also available through the Kanawha County Library Facebook page and Twitter feeds.

Wooten said the reading project is also being promoted statewide by the West Virginia Library Commission.

"Participants will get a certificate at the end of the year," Wooten said. "And we might have a party or reception after the first of the year."

Contact writer Cheryl Caswell at or 304-348-4832.


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