the votes are in and it's time for Dedham REads 2018!

And the winner is.... Havana by bestselling author Mark Kurlansky.

Supporting book titles:
Telex from Cuba by Rachel Kushner (adult, fiction)
Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings - A Memoir by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Edel Rodriguez (middle grade/young adult)
Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl's Courage Changed Music by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Rafael Lopez (picture book)
All the Way to Havana by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Mike Curato (picture book)

Havana by Mark Kurlansky
Mark Kurlansky’s multilayered and electrifying portrait of the long-elusive city presents an insider's view of Havana…part cultural history, part travelogue, with recipes, historic engravings, photographs, and Kurlansky's own pen-and-ink drawings throughout, the book celebrates the city's singular music, literature, baseball, and food; its five centuries of outstanding, neglected architecture; and its extraordinary blend of cultures. Havana is a place of extremes: a beautifully restored colonial city whose cobblestone streets pass through areas that have not been painted or repaired since the revolution. (available in paperback on March 6.)

Telex from Cuba by Rachel Kushner
"As a portrait of the 'other' 1950s Cuba, this novel is a departure from most others of its kind. Emphatically 'American' in its point of view and story, "Telex" offers a glimpse of how American executives and their families lived in Cuba during that crucial epoch of change, and, as such, will offer readers a refreshingly eye-opening account of what went on behind the corporate scenes and in the back rooms of power." -- Oscar Hijuelos, author

Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl’s Courage Changed Music by Margarita Engle
In this acclaimed picture book bursting with vibrance and rhythm, a girl dreams of playing the drums in 1930s Cuba, despite being continually reminded that only boys play the drums, and that there had never been a female drummer in the music-filled island of Cuba. The book includes note about Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, who inspired the story, and Anacaona, the all-girl dance band she formed with her sisters.  Winner of the Charlotte Zolotow Award for best picture book in 2015, Pura Belpre Award for best illustration in 2016, was an ALA notable book, and winner of many other awards.

Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings – A Memoir by Margarita Engle
In this poetic memoir, which won the Pura Belpre Author Award, was a YALSA Nonfiction Finalist, and was named a Walter Dean Myers Award Honoree, acclaimed author Margarita Engle tells of growing up as a child of two cultures during the Cold War. Her heart lies in Cuba, but most of the time she lives in Los Angeles, lonely in the noisy city and dreaming of the summers when she can take a plane through the enchanted air to her beloved island. Words and images are her constant companions, friendly and comforting when the children at school are not. Then a revolution breaks out in Cuba. Margarita fears for her far-away family. When the hostility between Cuba and the United States erupts at the Bay of Pigs Invasion, Margarita's worlds collide in the worst way possible.

All the Way to Havana by Margarita Engle
So we purr, cara cara, and we glide, taka taka, and we zoom, zoom, ZOOM!  Together, a boy and his parents drive to the city of Havana, Cuba, in their old family car. Along the way, they experience the sights and sounds of the streets - neighbors talking, musicians performing, and beautiful, colorful cars putt-putting and bumpety-bumping along. In the end, though it's their old car, Cara Cara, that the boy loves best. A joyful celebration of the Cuban people and their resourceful innovation.


Dedham Reads 2018 will begin its programs this winter, with a finale in April, 2018.  Check back for details on meetings, programs and event schedule.  Books are available at the Dedham Public Library.  If you would like to help with Dedham Reads, please email


2nd annual Book it 5k race to support the dedham public library

The 2nd annual Book It 5K race was held on Saturday, August 19th, 2017, at 10 a.m. at the Main Library, co-hosted by the Dedham Library Innovation Team to support the library. Once again, the lead sponsor for the event was Dedham Savings. The race was a fun family-friendly activity for the entire community to raise awareness for the town library system and the many resources it provides, and was the centerpiece of a busy community day at the library.  In addition to the 5K run that morning, the main library was open for patrons and other community members to visit, borrow from its collections, and view recent renovations to the facility.  In addition, Creature Teachers presented a live animal education program for all ages outside on the library lawn.