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Peter Heller Invited Back for City’s 20th Anniversary Community Reads

Courtesy of
December 3, 2022

Four books chosen, four authors return for Deschutes Public Library’s ‘A Novel Idea’ in 2023

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) — A Novel Idea has taken readers around the world and throughout time. We’ve read amazing books, joined in on powerful programming, and had thought-provoking discussions over the last 19 years. Four authors from years past return to honor this special occasion: David James Duncan (2004), María Amparo Escandón (2006), Peter Heller (2014), and Anne Griffin (2020).

“These authors left an indelible mark on the reading community. We are inviting them back with the idea of revisiting their books originally celebrated in A Novel Idea with an emphasis on each author’s new work of fiction,” said Deschutes Public Library Programs Supervisor Liz Goodrich. “It’s a choose-your-own-reading-adventure as readers have options to explore and discuss just one or all eight books.”

Novel Idea 2023 selections:

  • The Brothers K by David James Duncan
  • L.A. Weather by María Amparo Escandón
  • The Guide by Peter Heller
  • Listening Still by Anne Griffin

A Novel Idea is the largest community read program in the state of Oregon, with more than 10,000 people participating in 2022. The goal is to inspire Deschutes County residents to read, discuss, and attend free cultural and author events to build community one book at a time.

“This year is bigger than anything we’ve done before,” said Goodrich. “It’s an incredible feeling to come full circle, bearing witness to the journey of these authors and making it possible to invite them back to hear how their writing careers have developed. It will be a chance to hear what they have done since and how we’ve grown together by reading their books.”

Central Oregon has a heart for all four of these authors. David James Duncan’s The River Why launched A Novel Idea’s inaugural year, with 400 participants. María Amparo Escandón was a vivacious and hilarious presenter with the big rig parked in front of the Tower Theater to celebrate her book, Gonzales & Daughter Trucking Co. Peter Heller’s The Dog Stars sparked conversation that left us with a lasting impression. And Anne Griffin’s When All Is Said hit during the start of the pandemic, challenging Deschutes Public Library to explore new technologies and pivot to a virtual event that resulted in record-breaking participation.

Programming starts April 1, when readers can explore and expound upon ideas found in all four titles. A Novel Idea culminates with a visit from the authors on Saturday, April 29, 2023. All programs, including the authors’ presentations, are free of charge thanks to the support of the Deschutes Public Library Foundation.

Deschutes County residents can pick up a Reading Passport to check off each authors’ books (David James Duncan: The River Why and The Brothers K; María Amparo Escandón: González & Daughter Trucking Co., and L.A. Weather; Peter Heller: The Dog Stars and The Guide; Anne Griffin: When All Is Said and Listening Still) for the chance to receive a commemorative book bag.

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