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Continued: Building community through reading

  • Article by: ANNA PRATT , Special to the Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 21, 2014 - 1:44 PM

To dovetail with that, Eden Prairie Reads is considering hosting a panel that offers advice for living a healthier, more balanced life, he said. Another possibility is to line up panelists who’ve embarked on “Wild”-style journeys themselves, he said.

In Edina, readers are latching onto a number of books throughout the year as a part of Edina Reads.

Toni Miller, senior librarian at the Edina Library, said that’s one way the program has evolved since it originated in 2005.

It has branched out to consider numerous writers and works throughout the year.

As such, the program might bring a few writers together to talk about their work as a part of a single event. “We’ve found that that helps bring in a larger audience,” she said.

Sometimes the reading has to do with a theme, like bullying, a subject that has gotten a lot of attention in Minnesota in the past few years.

The feedback has been largely positive, with people offering up lots of ideas, Miller said.

“I think that’s one reason why the program has grown so much,” she said, adding, “It has become very meaningful.”

It helps that Edina is fertile ground for writers, she said.

The next Edina Reads program in April will feature Mary Lou Judd Carpenter, an Edina resident. Carpenter compiled and edited the letters of her mother, Miriam Judd, for her book “Miriam’s Words.”

“The book is a real-time account of a wife of a public servant in the mid-20th century,” Miller said.

Judging from the strong ­turnout at events, “The program is in a good place,” she said. “I think it will continue to grow.”


Anna Pratt is a Minneapolis freelance writer. She can be reached at

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