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What is Wheeling Reads: One Book, One Community?

Posted 10/21/19

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Wheeling Reads, One Book, One CommunityWheeling Reads: One Book, One Community” is designed to bring our city closer together through the shared experience of reading and discussing the same book.

Wheeling Reads: One Book, One Community” is presented by the Wheeling Arts & Cultural Commission in partnership with the Ohio County Public Library.

Now, you can help us choose our book by voting for your favorite from the five nominees at the link below. 


Wheeling's chosen book will be announced on National Author's Day, November 1, 2019, and our community discussion will take place at the Upper Ohio Valley Festival of Books on November 7, 2020. Look for many fun events and surprises along the way.

Wheeling Reads nominees for 2020.

Book Nominees:

"Clarinet Polka" (Keith Maillard, 2002)

Set in the Wheeling-based fictional town of Raysburg, W. Va., Maillard’s rich narrative is about the psychological and physical ravages of war that are passed on through the generations and about the healing powers of language, music, and tradition. This pitch-perfect portrait of working-class Polish America is a funny yet serious tale of lust and love, despair and redemption.

"Crapilachia: A Biography of Place" (Scott McClanahan, 2013)

Peopled by colorful characters and their quirky stories, "Crapalachia" interweaves oral folklore and area history, providing an ambitious and powerful portrait of the author's formative years, coming-of-age in rural West Virginia.

"A Pure Heart" (Rajia Hassib, 2019)

Written by an Egyptian immigrant living in West Virginia, "A Pure Heart" is a brilliant portrait of two Muslim women in the twenty-first century, and the decisions they make in work and love that determine their destinies. A stirring and deeply textured novel, "A Pure Heart" asks what it means to forgive, and considers how faith, family, and love can unite and divide us.

"Appalachia North" (Matthew Ferrence, 2019)

Author Matthew Ferrence's sense of geographic ambiguity is compounded when he learns that his birthplace in western Pennsylvania is technically not a mountain but, instead, a dissected plateau shaped by the slow, deep cuts of erosion. That discovery is followed by the diagnosis of a brain tumor, setting Ferrence on a journey that is part memoir, part exploration of geology and place.

"Educated" (Tara Westover, 2018)

An unforgettable memoir about a young girl who, kept out of school, leaves her survivalist family and goes on to earn a PhD from Cambridge University. Tara Westover is living proof that some people are flat-out, boots-always-laced-up indomitable. Educated, is a heartbreaking, heartwarming, best-in-years memoir about striding beyond the limitations of birth and environment into a better life.

Thank you for voting!

Wheeling Reads, One Book, One Community

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