Saturday, May 18, 2024
Saturday, May 18, 2024

Lafayette Reads Together offers Closer to Nowhere in 2023


Lafayette Reads Together offers Closer to Nowhere in 2023

Lafayette, LA – Lafayette Reads Together (LRT) has entered its ninth year as a community-wide reading program and you are invited to be a part of it. This annual event was created to bring our community together by reading, sharing, and discussing the same book. Free copies of the book will be available at all library locations, donated by the Lafayette Public Library Foundation, beginning Tuesday, January 17.

The 2023 community read, Closer to Nowhere by New York Times bestselling novelist Ellen Hopkins. The Lafayette Reads Together Committee selected Closer to Nowhere because it highlights the universal experience of a family going through changes. The book is structured to closely follow two very different personalities and illuminates how different people handle transitions. Through Closer to Nowhere, we aim to inspire conversations about mental well-being and explore what it looks like to cope with tough situations in healthy ways.

book: Closer to Nowhere by Ellen Hopkins
Photo provided by Lafayette Public Library System

For the most part, Hannah’s life is just how she wants it. She has two supportive parents, she’s popular at school, and she’s been killing it at gymnastics. But when her cousin Cal moves in with her family, everything changes. Cal tells half-truths and tall tales, pranks Hannah constantly, and seems to be the reason her parents are fighting more and more. Nothing is how it used to be. She knows that Cal went through a lot after his mom died and she is trying to be patient, but most days Hannah just wishes Cal never moved in.

For his part, Cal is trying his hardest to fit in, but not everyone is as appreciative of his unique sense of humor and storytelling gifts as he is. Humor and stories might be his defense mechanism, but if Cal doesn’t let his walls down soon, he might push away the very people who are trying their best to love him.

Told in verse from the alternating perspectives of Hannah and Cal, this is a story of two cousins who are more alike than they realize and the family they both want to save.

Join us for An Evening with Ellen Hopkins on Thursday, March 2 at the Main Library (starting at 6:00 pm) where she will discuss her novel, Closer to Nowhere. The community read will run January 17 through March 11 and will offer programs and presentations for adults, teens, and children (Ages 10 & up). Businesses and groups can join this effort simply by agreeing to have members read the book and distributing books to employees. Be sure to visit for more Lafayette Reads Together programs.

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Lafayette Reads Together is sponsored by the Lafayette Public Library Foundation. Community partners include Lafayette Consolidated Government, Acadiana Open Channel, Acadiana Animal Aid, Bonne Vie Macarons, Cheerz Cheerleading Academy, Christian Youth Theatre (CYT), Healing House, Hilliard Art Museum, and Pet Partners of Acadiana. For more information about Lafayette Reads Together, visit

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