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Urbandale Public Library/The Great American Read



This summer and fall, we encouraged you to vote for your favorite book from The Great American Read initiative and its list of 100 most-loved books.


The votes are in!

America’s best-loved novel from the list of 100 most-loved books is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee!


Top 10 List

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird
  2. Outlander (Series)
  3. Harry Potter (Series)
  4. Pride and Prejudice
  5. Lord of the Rings
  6. Gone with the Wind
  7. Charlotte’s Web
  8. Little Women
  9. Chronicles of Narnia
  10. Jane Eyre

Click here to learn more about the results of the nationwide vote and how other books on the list ranked.




The Great American Read Initiative at the Urbandale Public Library

Over the past  few months, the Library has hosted a variety of public programs, special events, and activities in support of  The Great American Read initiative and to celebrate the stories we love!  Here are just a few highlights!


Photo Booth

We invited patrons and staff to strike a pose and have their photo taken with their favorite book!







To view more photos, visit us on Instagram (@urbandalelibrary).


Series Watch Parties

The Library helped kick off the series with a special watch party for Episode #1 on May 22, and hosted watch parties for each episode of the series this fall.    The finale episode on Tuesday, Oct. 23 was a very special celebration complete with a cake and a drawing for prizes!


Life Stories Memoir Program

Inspired by The Great American Read initiative, we encouraged our staff and participants in the Life Stories Memoir program to turn memories of their favorite books and reading into short memoirs to share with future generations.  Click here to read some of the memoirs you shared with us.



About The Great American Read

A partnership between the American Library Association and PBS, “The Great American Read” was an eight-part TV series and multi-platform initiative that celebrated the joy of reading and the books we love.  Hosted by television personality and journalist Meredith Vieira, “The Great American Read” engaged audiences with a list of America’s 100 favorite books,  encouraged audiences to read the books, vote from the list of 100, and share their personal connections to the title.  All of the 100 favorite books can be found in the Urbandale Public Library’s collection.




The Urbandale Public Library’s programming for The Great American Read was offered as part of a grant from the American Library Association and PBS.  The Urbandale Public Library was proud to have been  awarded a grant from the American Library Association (ALA) and PBS to host programs around this initiative.   More than 220 public libraries applied for the $2,000 grants, which support public programs around the series.  The Urbandale Public Library was one of just 50 libraries nationwide to be selected.  Click here to read our press release announcing this great news!


Thanks to everyone who voted for their favorite book or attended an event at our Library!  We hope this initiative inspired you to celebrate books and the joy of reading!