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2020 SaratogaREADS! Selections

Inspired by growing local and national interest in examining systems of inequity and celebrating our diversity, Saratoga Springs Public Library has chosen Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah as the 2020 SaratogaREADS! selection.

New Kid, a graphic novel by Jerry Craft, about an African-American middle-schooler from Washington Heights who finds himself feeling out of place at a fancy and decidedly un-diverse private school at the other end of the city, is the 2020 SaratogaREADS! Junior Companion.

In 2019, Saratoga Springs Public Library was the second in the state to be Certified Sustainable by the New York Library Association by meeting rigorous standards for environmental, fiscal, and social responsibility. This year’s SaratogaREADS! selections expand on conversations from the previous two seasons, which took place while undergoing the sustainability certification process, and we hope they will spark and amplify discussions in our community about inclusion and belonging.

Inspired by growing local and national interest in examining systems of inequity and celebrating our diversity, Saratoga Springs Public Library has chosen Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah as the 2020 SaratogaREADS! selection. With surprising grace and humor, Noah recounts episodes from a harrowing childhood lived under apartheid, in which his very existence, as the son of a white European man and a Black South African woman, was illegal. Simultaneously, funny, smart, and horrifying, this story of a remarkable woman raising a biracial son in an unjust system provides a doorway into discussions of the meaning of race, family, and equality.

New Kid, a graphic novel by Jerry Craft, about an African-American middle-schooler from Washington Heights who finds himself feeling out of place at a fancy and decidedly un-diverse private school at the other end of the city, is the 2020 SaratogaREADS! Junior Companion. Jordan wants to go to art school, but instead his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school, where he is a fish-out-of-water as one of the few kids of color. As he struggles to adapt to his new surroundings, he finds it harder to fit in with his neighborhood friends. Humorous, heartbreaking, and delightfully drawn, New Kid invites discussion of privilege and acceptance.