Read Brave Saint Paul 2023

Read Brave is Saint Paul Public Library’s citywide, intergenerational reading program that connects readers of all ages to one another through one theme, five books and their authors, programs, and a call to action. The 2023 theme was mental health.

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2023 Read Brave by the Numbers

5,980 copies of the 2023 Read Brave titles were distributed to students and community members to add to their personal libraries.

490 students total participated in in-person author events with Adib Khorram, author of Darius the Great is Not Okay and virtual visits with Rosena Fung, author and illustrator of Living with Viola.

Pictured above: Collaborative drawings created by author/illustrator Rosena Fung and middle school students from Read Brave partner schools.

300 community members participated in Read Brave programs including the Drum and Dance Healing Circle, Community Sound Healing, the Children's Mental Health panel with two local authors and a youth mental health worker, and other programs.

Community Feedback

"I've never read a book before where I thought to myself, 'Hey, that's me!' I did feel a little emotional because it was the first time I felt seen [in a book]."

"[Read Brave Talk Brave was an] incredible, wide-ranging discussion that left me filled with optimism for our future, and grateful to live in St. Paul."

"Read Brave was very exciting because not just anyone gets the opportunity to have an author visit your school, let alone an author you’re a fan of."

2023 Books

2023 Books

Explore Read Brave 2023

Explore Read Brave 2023

Darius the Great is Not Okay Book Discussion Questions

Download discussion questions for this year's Read Brave main selection, "Darius the Great is Not Okay."

Read Brave Talk Brave - March 9, 2023 - Livestream

Author Adib Khorram, Mayor Carter, and youth from People Inc. sit down to talk about mental health, other themes found in Khorram's book.

2023 Read Brave Toolkit

A free resource that includes discussion questions, a conversation guide, and activities to help start conversations about mental health.

St. Paul libraries, home of the brave readers

Mar 02, 2023
It can be hard to open up about how we feel. In St. Paul, that conversation starts this month by opening up a good book.

Mental Health Resources

A list of additional mental health resources to help kick-start brave conversations.

Read Brave: A Conversation About Children's Mental Health

A conversation featuring local authors of Read Brave books: Cori Doerrfeld and Bao Phi, and Keisha Mitchell, a mental health/family worker.

Read Brave: Sound Medicine Dance & Drum Healing Circle

Ginga da Bahia led movement and senses and Aradoyin Truth Maze led meditation and drumming in a Sound Medicine Drum & Dance Healing Circle

Read Brave: Community Sound Healing

Sister duo, Nancy and Pagnia Xiong, facilitated a community healing session using crystal singing bowls and vocals.

Read Brave: Storytime with Special Guest Mayor Carter

Families joined SPPL for a special storytime with Mayor Melvin Carter and Rose Oyamot, featuring Read Brave title "The Rabbit Listened".

Things to Do: Read Brave

Feb 23, 2023
"Read Brave" about mental health is the theme of St. Paul Public Library’s citywide, intergenerational reading program, now in its 10th year

"Darius the Great Is Not Okay" Read-Alikes

Check out these titles which explore themes of teenage mental health, family relationships, and the immigrant experience.

"My Grandmother's Hands" Read-Alikes

Trauma, anti-racism work, intersectionality, and racism in the U.S., plus Black healing and Black joy as forms of resistance and resilience.

"Living With Viola" Read-Alikes

Middle grade books about living with OCD, ADHD, having a parent with mental health challenges, and experiencing grief.

Read Brave Saint Paul is brought to you by the Saint Paul Public Library and The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library.

This program is funded with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, with special support from a Saint Paul Public School’s Community Partnership ARP Grant and from The Saint Paul Saints.

Questions about Read Brave?

Get in touch with the Read Brave Team using the form below with any questions you have about Read Brave books, events, or partnerships.

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