SR! 2018 Season News

Saratoga Reads Announces the 2018 Season's Titles!

To coincide with its new sustainability Initiative, Saratoga Springs Public Library has chosen Elizabeth Kolbert’s Pulitzer-Prize-winning title, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History as the next SaratogaREADS! community-wide reading and discussion selection.

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, a novel by Jacqueline Kelly about a young girl becoming interested in science and nature in turn-of-the-nineteenth-century Texas, is the Junior companion.

The sustainability initiative grew out the library’s most recent planning process, which involved dozens of one-on-one interviews between library staff and community members about their aspirations for the community. The two goals of the initiative are:

  1. The library will minimize its environmental impact; and,
  2. Residents of the library’s service area will be empowered to productively engage in dialogue about, and have the resources to ensure, a more resilient future.

The Sixth Extinction has been chosen to help address both of those goals. Meticulously researched, and fascinatingly told, it explores five previous mass extinction events that have led to the demise of species from dinosaurs to dodo birds (or, rather, the great auk), and rings a loud warning bell about the current rapid rate of man-made climate change and its global impact. With side-trips into astrophysics, paleontology, and evolution, this Pulitzer Prize Winner is sure to spark wonder along with the worry, and perhaps inspire work on a pressing problem.

“For us, sustainability occupies the curious juncture of preservation and progress: how do we sustain the character of our community, preserve what is best about both our natural and built resources, grow responsibly, and maximize current and future generations’ ability to live, work and play in our shared environment?” said Library Director, Issac Pulver. “We’re excited about the conversations about sustainability issues that these selections can spark,” he continued.

The mission of SaratogaREADS! is to invite all members of the Saratoga Springs community to participate in a shared reading experience, and to take part in conversations and events inspired by the annual reading selections. Events focus on a single selection and a Junior Companion title for young readers. Selections are based on a number of criteria, but chief among them are discussability, the potential for local interest, and the potential for a particular title to inspire conversations and experiences that go beyond the book.

An extensive slate of programs related to this year’s selections will take place at the library and throughout the community this winter. A full schedule of events will be posted on the library’s website, and at

For a full program brochure with more complete program and event descriptions, as well as the Junior Companion discussions and activities (beginning in February), see our full 2018 Selection and Junior Companion announcement brochure.

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