Read Brave Saint Paul


Read Brave Saint Paul is a new twist on the traditional city one-book program. Rather than a single book, the program revolves around a common theme relevant to our city. All readers — from our youngest children to our elders — are encouraged to engage in the program through reading, discussion, programming, and action. The 2020 Read Brave theme is “Our Climate Crisis.”

The current state of the environment affects all of us, from Saint Paul to countries across the globe. We have all played a part in how we got here, and we are all a part of the solution. Read Brave aims to unite residents around this topic — to seek understanding of the science, share stories about its impact, and work together toward solutions.

For 2020, The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline is the primary pick, and Climate Justice by Mary Robinson is the nonfiction pick. Learn more about Read Brave Kids below.


Featured Events

Sun Ray Book Club featuring "The Marrow Thieves"

Feb 15th | 10:00am - 11:30am
Join us every third Saturday at Sun Ray Library to discuss the book of the month. All are welcome and no registration is…

Adult Book Club featuring Climate Justice

Feb 5th | 6:30pm - 7:30pm
Please join us on the first Wednesday of each month to discuss interesting books. All are welcome and no registration is required.

Get the latest Read Brave news.


The Marrow Thieves, by Canadian Métis author, Cherie Dimaline, is this year’s primary book selection. A 2018 Canada Reads finalist, the young-adult novel imagines a dystopian future where global warming has ravaged the earth and, with it, most people’s ability to dream. Indigenous people, who can still dream, are hunted for their marrow to create a serum for others. The story follows Frenchie, a teenager on the run. After his brother is captured, Frenchie must create an ad hoc family and fight to preserve his people.

Watch a short introductory 'hello' from Cherie Dimaline to readers in Saint Paul.

Access our reading and discussion guide.

Save the date! Dimaline will visit Saint Paul March 11-13, 2020.

Climate Justice: Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for a Sustainable Future, by Mary Robinson, the former President of Ireland, is this year’s nonfiction selection. Robinson gives voice to farmers, activists, and ordinary people worldwide who are facing the effects of the climate crisis with courage and innovation.  Her book acknowledges the hardship and uncertainty environmental degradation has had on traditional ways of life and celebrates the resilience of people who have worked for sustainable solutions.

Watch Mary Robinson's TED Talk on "Why Climate Change is a Threat to Human Rights."

Access our reading and discussion guide.

Get a FREE library card.

Visit our library card FAQs to learn more about how to get your FREE Saint Paul Public Library card.

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We're excited to announce the 2020 Read Brave Kids book picks. Read Brave Kids empowers young readers and artists by engaging in fun reading activities that celebrate kids' choice, gaining a voice, and engaging in brave conversations with their communities.

Read Brave Kids 2020

Read Brave Kids (2020): Picture Books

The official 2020 picture book selections for Read Brave Kids.

Read Brave Kids (2020): Early Grade

The official 2020 early grade book selections for Read Brave Kids.

Read Brave Kids (2020): Middle Grade

The official 2020 middle-grade book selections for Read Brave Kids.


Browse the latest Read Brave 2020 content.

Read Brave 2020

McKnight Foundation on Twitter: "Thanks to @thefriends for sharing…" | 2293728

Thanks to @thefriends for sharing copies of @stpaullibrary’s #ReadBrave #OurClimateCrisis books with us! Our staff is excited to dive into these stories and join the @cityofsaintpaul and its residents in working toward #ClimateSolutions!

Climate Justice: Sketch Notes (from Books & Bars)

Sketch notes, created by Rebecca Moss, for the January Books & Bars discussion of "Climate Justice."

Dr. Kate Knuth on Twitter: "I love this civic capacity-building…" | 2283946

I love this civic capacity-building work on climate that is happening in the @stpaullibrary system.

Why Lake Superior Is Rising and What That Means for Duluth

The Great Lakes, to which Duluth owes so much, are changing as a result of slow geological processes as well as rapid climate change.

Weather 2050

America is warming fast. See how your city’s weather will be different in just one generation

Survival by Degrees: 389 Bird Species on the Brink

Two-thirds of North American birds are at increasing risk of extinction from global temperature rise.

How climate change will impact the Boundary Waters

The Boundary Waters may seem unchangeable and stoic. But humankind's actions over time are far too much for nature.

How Climate Change Will Impact Minnesota

Ready for a Minnesota that's hot, wet, and smells like cilantro? Here's what the future holds for our wild places–and your backyard.

How Tribes Are Harnessing Data to Plan for Climate Change

Climate change is already damaging Indigenous ways of life. But tribes are adapting.

U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit - Tribal Nations

Climate change impacts are projected to be especially severe for many of the 567 federally recognized tribes in the United States.

Read Brave: Civic Lab

Learn about how our climate crisis is already impacting your community and take action.

What climate change issues are you most concerned about in YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD and that you would like to see addressed?

What climate change issues are you most concerned about in YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD and that you would like to see addressed?
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

What climate change issues are you most concerned about in YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD and that you would like to see addressed?

  • The risk of urban flooding during extreme rainfalls, resulting in property damage
  • Improving access to public transit to reduce pollution and our transportation costs
  • Poor air quality made worse during summer heat waves
  • Ability to stay cool during heat waves and warm and safe during a power outage or flood
  • Keeping home energy bills down and improving comfort and energy efficiency
  • The lack of trees and green space to lessen the adverse impacts of climate change
  • Other

Read Brave: Our Climate Crisis Fiction

Have you finished The Marrow Thieves? Library staff members have curated these fiction titles that grapple with our climate crisis.

Read Brave: Our Climate Crisis Nonfiction

If you finished Climate Justice and are looking for more nonfiction titles that address our climate crisis, this list is for you!

Ann Griffin on Twitter: "Ms. Cate from @stpaullibrary came and…" | 2260068

Ms. Cate from @stpaullibrary came and told us all about #ReadBrave . By popular vote, we will read Zoey and Sassafras Merhorses and Bubbles by @AsiaCitroAuthor first! @GlobalArtsPlus

April Pulley Sayre on Twitter: "Love the idea of #ReadBrave…" | 2260066

Love the idea of #ReadBrave list! Thank You Earth is my heart in a book. Thx @stpaullibrary @LauraPSalas Congrats @Miranda_Paul @toddparr


Read Brave is also supported by the Katherine B. Andersen Fund, and the Saint Paul Saints.


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