Books can take you places you've never been before. Or places that don't exist. Or take you the inside of an issue you thought you knew.
But for some people - the ones who can't read - escaping to a book doesn't happen. That's why area businesses have determined to promote literacy by inviting nine Iowa authors to a book signing next week.
The King Author's book signing will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Sept. 22. Two or three authors will be stationed in each wing of the Crossroads Mall, said event organizer Clarice Thompson.
-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Clarice Thompson looks over a copy of “Papa’s Latkes,” by Michelle Edwards, framed by a number of other books whose authors will be at a book signing from 2 to 4 p.m. Sept. 27 at various locations in the Crossroads Mall. Thompson helped organize the event.
The importance of reading is "self-explanatory," said Thompson.
"There are a lot of young people and older people, mature people who don't know how to read, and to have these fantastic authors give of their time to come in and promote literacy is just major," she said.
Some of the authors are local to Fort Dodge. All are from Iowa.
If you go:
WHAT: King Author's Book Signing
WHO: Nine Iowa authors helping promote literacy
WHEN: 2 to 4 p.m. Sept. 22
WHERE: Various locations throughout the Crossroads Mall
AUTHORS: Carol Barber, Pam Bygness, Darrel R. Day, Wendy Delsol, Michelle Edwards, Kathy Kudron, James Patrick Morgans, Roger Natte, Matthew Maggio
Thompson contacted all of the authors personally.
"The authors she has chosen represent all types of literary works," said Amy Bruno, of the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance. "So she's really targeting lots of different audiences."
The GFDGA is one of the six organizations on the core team that put together the event, Thompson said.
Books include James Patrick Morgans' biography of a pastor who helped run the Underground Railroad stop in Tabor.
Wendy Delsol will bring "Stork," a young-adult fiction that mixes the story of a high school misfit with ancient Norse mythology.
Matthew Maggio will be there with a book by the eight Maggio siblings - "Pieces of Eight" - including tales of growing up in a big family and three different takes on an exploding toilet story.
Carol Barber will have a memoir about bringing her father home from New York to Iowa and coping with senile dementia.
Bruno said, "One main thing the Growth Alliance wants to do is make sure we have great schools. That's such a thing that people look at when they move to our region. By helping promote literacy and reading books, which can be such an enjoyable thing, it helps further that mission."
She said the team was formed to promote good causes as well as shopping locally.
"It's a mix of people in the mall and outside the mall, businesses who understand we have great location and want to make sure people from outside come and do their shopping here," she said.
The whole thing was Thompson's idea, Bruno said.
"She wants to schedule different things like this every quarter, and have that be another draw for the area," Bruno said.
Thompson, who owns Clarice's Fashions in the mall, said the group plans to have events pertaining to organ donation, breast cancer and Alzheimer's Disease in the future.
Many businesses besides the six on the team are helping to sponsor the event.
"We're basically trying to draw businesses inside and outside the mall together to promote and sponsor such awesome causes," Thompson said.