roswell reads

A Community-wide Reading Event


Roswell Reads Rick Bragg

Roswell Reads has a unprecedented announcement for 2019: the Steering Committee has chosen the entire collection by Rick Bragg, a classic Southern author.

We invite community and neighborhood book clubs to join “Roswell Reads Rick Bragg” by choosing, reading, and discussing one or more of his works. If you don’t belong to a book club but would like to discuss a book with a group, you are welcome to join Noonday Nosh at their February meeting.

Rick Bragg’s books:
The Best Cook in the World: Tales from My Momma’s Table
My Southern Journey:True Stories from the Heart of the South
Jerry Lee Lewis: His Own Story
The Prince of Frogtown
I Am a Soldier, Too: The Jessica Lynch Story
Ava’s Man
The Most They Every Had
Somebody Told Me: The Newspaper Stories of Rick Bragg
All Over but the Shoutin’

Details about the Literary Luncheon, Writing Workshop, Community Program, Children’s Book Selection and Family Program are included in the Roswell Reads brochure.
Click here to download a PDF of the brochure.
You won’t want to miss meeting this iconic author! Register here:



Roswell Reads invites families to a free Children’s Program encouraging participants to think, write and talk about their families by exploring how they got their name.

Children are encouraged to read Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes, a story of a young mouse who isn’t quite sure she likes her name. The book is a funny and honest school story about teasing, self-esteem and acceptance.

Saturday, March 2, 1:00 - 2:30
East Roswell Library 2301 Holcomb Bridge Road

Register here:


Rick Bragg (1959- ) is a noted journalist and writer who won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing in 1996 for his coverage of the Oklahoma City bombing for the New York Times. His most lasting contributions, however, are likely his family stories. Initially, Bragg believed his family stories would be important only to himself and his immediate family, but they have garnered wide appeal among people who see themselves and their own families reflected in the characters and settings. 


   Rick Bragg was born in Piedmont, Alabama and grew up in and around Possum Trot, near Jacksonville (AL). His father, a Korean War veteran, was largely absent from the household and died in 1974. His mother supported the family by picking cotton, taking in laundry, and cleaning houses in the area; she allegedly denied herself a new dress for 18 years to provide for her family. His relatives were also very involved in his young life, and greatly influenced his personal and emotional development.

   After graduating from Jacksonville High School in 1977, Bragg took a job and attended night courses for six months at Jacksonville State University. In 1980 he was hired as a reporter for the Anniston Star and from 1986 to 1989, he worked as a reporter at the Birmingham News. He left in 1989 to work for the St. Petersburg Times as a correspondent. His assignments during those years included coverage of Hurricane Andrew, the political and socio-economic turmoil in Haiti, and the riots in Miami. 

   In 1992, Bragg was awarded Harvard University’s Nieman Fellowship, which provided tuition-free career development education for working journalists and led to his job with the New York Times. Beside his Pulitzer Prize, he is the recipient of the American Society of Newspaper Editors Distinguished Writing Award and more than 50 writing awards in 20 years. He has recently been awarded the 2019 Conroy Legacy Award and the 2018 Joanne Sloan National Award for the Encouragement of Writing, recognizing his lasting impact on the literary community and support of new and emerging writers. Bragg, who currently lives in Alabama, works as a writing professor at the University of Alabama's journalism program in its College of Communication and Information Sciences and writes the monthly Southern Journal column in Southern Living.


Roswell Reads promotes the value of reading, literacy, and lifelong learning through the shared community-wide experience of reading and discussing a common book or collection. Readers are able to collectively examine relevant issues, establish bonds, and forge a better understanding of their community and society.


Roswell Reads, fourteen-years strong, brings a variety of literature and accompanying programs to the community. The Roswell Reads committee looks for a book or collection that has strong characters and presents themes that address the human condition. The books should appeal to adults and teens as well as people of various cultures and ethnic backgrounds who live in Roswell. If possible, a complementary book is chosen for children so that a younger audience can also be involved.

      Programs, held in February and March, include a writing workshop conducted by the author, a family program with activities based on a children's book selection that reflects the theme of the Roswell Reads book, and community outreach to an organization that reflects the concerns addressed in the book selection. The highlight is a Literary Luncheon in March with the author of the selected collection.

      For questions or more information, please e-mail the committee at
To join the mailing list, see below.



2018 - Burial for a King by Rebecca Burns
2017 - The Underdogs by Melissa Fay Greene
2016 - What Stands in a Storm by Kim Cross
2015 - The Distance Between Us by Reyna Grande
2014 - Someone Else's Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson
2013 - Sweeping Up Glass by Carolyn Wall
2012 - Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin
2011 - My Name Is Mary Sutter by Robin Oliveira
2010 - Outcasts United: A Refugee Soccer Team, an American Town by Warren St. John
2009 - Them by Nathan McCall
2008 - The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
2007 - The Valley of Light by Terry Kay
2006 - Rocket Boys by Homer Hickam



The Roswell Reads Committee gratefully acknowledges the following sponsors:

  • The City of Roswell

  • Friends of the Roswell Library

  • Friends of the East Roswell Library

  • Fulton County Library System

  • Roswell and East Roswell Libraries

  • Roswell Rotary Club

  • Publix



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