ReadDavidson is an annual Town-wide reading initiative and partnership between the Town of Davidson, the Davidson Public Library, Main Street Books, Davidson College, and Davidson’s local avid readers. The program started in 2007 and since has established the ReadDavidson committee which encourages community members to read selected books and attend book-related events intended to make the titles come to life.


ReadDavidson is thrilled to partner with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library (CML) again in 2024 to support and enhance its annual Community Read initiative. Through exciting programming aimed at all age groups, the partnership encourages the Davidson community to read (or listen to) the book, talk about it, attend library programs, and celebrate a shared love of reading.

2024 Read DavidsonCommunity Read

How to participate

READ (and support your local bookstore and library branch at the same time!)
Main Street Books is offering a 10% discount on all of the 2024 ReadDavidson/Community Read titles.

ATTEND an event! (Registration links coming soon!)

Friday, March 15, 2024: Friday on the Green for 5-8th graders: Measuring Up

  • 3:30-5:00 p.m.
  • 5-8th graders
  • Davidson Town Green: 119 S. Main Street, Davidson
  • Enjoy games on the Green and make-your-own snack mix

Saturday, March 16, 2024: Springtime Storytime: Thank You, Omu!

  • 10:00-11:00 a.m.
  • Preschool aged children
  • Davidson Farmers Market Pergola (behind Summit Coffee)
  • Enjoy Thank You, Omu! as well as song and movement activities

Monday, March 18, 2024: 2024 ReadDavidson Signature Event: Davidson College's Dr. Joseph Ewoodzie, Jr. 

  • 5:00-7:00 p.m. Saucy Girl Taco Truck (open to the public for purchase)
  • 7:30-8:30 p.m. (Dr. Ewoodzie's talk is free, but registration is required to attend.)
  • Adults
  • Town Hall and Community Center: 251 South Street
  • Getting Something to Eat in Jackson: Race, Class, and Food in The American South

About Dr. Joseph Ewoodzie, Jr.JosephEwoodzieJr._cropped
A professor of sociology at Davidson College, Dr. Ewoodzie studies belonging and aims to understand how we create an "us" and a "them." He tries to understand how we structure our world to benefit "us" and penalize "them" - how we ensure the well-being of those who belong and alienate those who do not. Finally, he is very interested in how "they" make do and deal with the consequences of not belonging.

 In his book, Getting Something to Eat in Jackson: Race, Class, and Food in The American South, Dr. Ewoodzie provides a vivid portrait of African American life in today's urban South that uses food to explore the complex interactions of race and class.

Purchase tacos, burritos, and more from Saucy Girl Taco Truck prior to Dr. Ewoodzie's presentation, 5:00-7:00 p.m. Bring a lawn chair! 

Please register each attendee to the talk individually so that we can ensure adequate seating.

The Davidson Public Library will host several events as well!

Tuesday, March 5, 2024: Davidson Book Start Art

  • 4:00-5:00 p.m.
  • Preteens (9-11) and School Age (5-11)
  • Davidson Public Library Community Room

Thursday, March 14, 2024: International Food Taste Test

Saturday, March 23, 2024: Davidson Creating with Books

  • 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
  • Ages 5-11
  • Davidson Public Library Community Room
  • REGISTRATION REQUIRED- Opens Friday, March 1 at 12:00 a.m.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024: Food Focused Speed Friendship

For all 2024 Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Community Read events, including author events, please see:

Wednesday, March 6, 2024: Art of Reading: Buttermilk Graffiti

  • Mint Museum Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road, Charlotte, NC 28207
  • 6:00-7:30 p.m.
  • More information and to register, click HERE.

Book SynopsesButtermilk Graffiti

Buttermilk Graffiti by Edward Lee
American food is the story of mash-ups. Immigrants arrive, cultures collide, and out of the push-pull come exciting new dishes and flavors. But for Edward Lee, who, like Anthony Bourdain or Gabrielle Hamilton, is as much a writer as he is a chef, that first surprising bite is just the beginning. What about the people behind the food? What about the traditions, the innovations, the memories?

A natural-born storyteller, Lee decided to hit the road and spent two years uncovering fascinating narratives from every corner of the country. There’s a Cambodian couple in Lowell, Massachusetts, and their efforts to re-create the flavors of their lost country. A Uyghur café in New York’s Brighton Beach serves a noodle soup that seems so very familiar and yet so very exotic—one unexpected ingredient opens a window onto an entirely unique culture. A beignet from Café du Monde in New Orleans, as potent as Proust’s madeleine, inspires a narrative that tunnels through time, back to the first Creole cooks, then forward to a Korean rice-flour hoedduck and a beignet dusted with matcha.

Sixteen adventures, sixteen vibrant new chapters in the great evolving story of American cuisine. And forty recipes, created by Lee, that bring these new dishes into our own kitchens.
Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet

Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet by Laekan Zea Kemp
Penelope Prado has always dreamed of opening her own pastelería next to her father's restaurant, Nacho's Tacos. But her mom and dad have different plans—leaving Pen to choose between disappointing her traditional Mexican American parents or following her own path. When she confesses a secret she's been keeping, her world is sent into a tailspin. But then she meets a cute new hire at Nacho's who sees through her hard exterior and asks the questions she's been too afraid to ask herself.

Xander Amaro has been searching for home since he was a little boy. For him, a job at Nacho's is an opportunity for just that—a chance at a normal life, to settle in at his abuelo's, and to find the father who left him behind. But when both the restaurant and Xander's immigrant status are threatened, he will do whatever it takes to protect his newfound family and himself.

Together, Pen and Xander must navigate first love and discovering where they belong in order to save the place they all call home.

This stunning and poignant novel from debut author Laekan Zea Kemp explores identity, found families and the power of food, all nestled within a courageous and intensely loyal Chicanx community.

Measuring Up by Lily LaMotte and Ann XuMeasuring Up
Twelve-year-old Cici has just moved from Taiwan to Seattle, and the only thing she wants more than to fit in at her new school is to celebrate her grandmother, A-má’s, seventieth birthday together.

Since she can’t go to A-má, Cici cooks up a plan to bring A-má to her by winning the grand prize in a kids’ cooking contest to pay for A-má’s plane ticket! There’s just one problem: Cici only knows how to cook Taiwanese food.

And after her pickled cucumber debacle at lunch, she’s determined to channel her inner Julia Child. Can Cici find a winning recipe to reunite with A-má, a way to fit in with her new friends, and somehow find herself too?

Thank You, Omu! by Oge MoraThank you Omu
Everyone in the neighborhood dreams of a taste of Omu's delicious stew! One by one, they follow their noses toward the scrumptious scent. And one by one, Omu offers a portion of her meal. Soon the pot is empty. Has she been so generous that she has nothing left for herself?

Debut author-illustrator Oge Mora brings to life a heartwarming story of sharing and community in colorful cut-paper designs as luscious as Omu's stew, with an extra serving of love. An author's note explains that "Omu" (pronounced AH-moo) means "queen" in the Igbo language of her parents, but growing up, she used it to mean "Grandma." This book was inspired by the strong female role models in Oge Mora's life.

ReadDavidson Playlist

Check out recordings of past events here.


The ReadDavidson initiative would not be possible without the support of the following sponsors:

  • Davidson Public Library
  • Main Street Books
  • Davidson College
  • Local readers!

Prior ReadDavidson selections

  • 2024: Buttermilk Graffiti by Edward Lee; Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet by Laekan Zea Kemp; Measuring Up by Lily LaMotte and Ann Xu; Thank you, Omu! by Oge More
  • 2023: The People We Keep by Allison Larkin; The Edge of Anything by Nora Shalaway Carpenter; Front Desk by Kelly Yang; The Big Umbrella by Amy June Bates
  • 2022: Infinite Country by Patricia Engel; What Makes Us by Rafi Mittlefehldt; When Stars are Scattered by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed; Story Boat by Kyo Maclear
  • 2021: Caste: The Origins of Our Discontent by Isabel Wilkerson; Legendborn by Tracy Deonn; Genesis Begins Again by Alicia Williams; The Power of One by Trudy Ludwig
  • 2019: Varina by Charles Frazier
  • 2018: News of the World by Paulette Jiles
  • 2017: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
  • 2016: Wherever There is Light by Peter Golden
  • 2015: Guests on Earth by Lee Smith
  • 2014: One Second After by William Forstchen
  • 2013: A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash
  • 2012: State of Wonder by Ann Patchett
  • 2011: The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • 2010: A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson
  • 2009: The Color of Water by James McBride
  • 2008: One Foot in Eden by Ron Rash
  • 2007: The Bridge by Doug Marlette