After a months-long process that included recruiting of nominations, narrowing them down, and a public vote, the Coronado Public Library is excited to accounce the 2022 Coronado Community READ title, West with Giraffes by Lynda Rutledge! This wonderful historical fiction, set in 1938, details the journey of two giraffes. After being caught in a hurricane coming across the Atlantic, the giraffes were loaded onto a truck and driven across the United States. The story mixes in a little adventure and interesting historical notes before coming to a close in our very own backyard. Rutledge found the idea for the book when she came across newspaper clippings about the giraffes’ travels in the San Diego Zoo’s archives while doing research for another project.
In addition to the main Community READ title, children’s and teen companion titles were also selected. The children’s pick, Ty the Quiet Giraffe by San Diego Zoo authors Carrie Hassler and Barbara Bell, tells the story of a quiet giraffe who isn’t noticed by anyone until he shows them that he has something important to say. The teen title, Turtle in Paradise: The Graphic Novel by Jennifer L. Holm and Savanna Ganucheau is an inspiring story set in 1935 Key West full of family secrets, treasure, and a little bit of fun.
2022 marks the sixth year of this program and strives to bring the community together through the shared reading of a single book. This process started in October 2021, when the community was asked to nominate titles for consideration. A selection committee, using established criteria, then narrowed down the selection to five titles. The top five finalists were The Dog Who Could Fly by Damien Lewis, The Midnight Library by Matt Haig, Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrera, Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell, and West with Giraffes by Lynda Rutledge. Once public voting concluded on February 6th, West with Giraffes was the clear winner.
The Library, with help from local partners including the Friends of the Coronado Public Library, the Cultural Arts Commission, the Coronado Historical Association, the Coronado Unified School District and Bay Books, will plan a series of events for all ages to further this connection this coming April. Events will include book discussions, movie showings, live music, lectures, and will conclude with a finale concert by the High Society Jazz Band on April 30.