Brave Books is the Poetry Center's annual celebration of independent bookstores and libraries from around the world, which features lost, living, and otherwise dramatic and brave oases people have built to protect, house, share, and enjoy books. In years past, we've featured Shakespeare & Company in Paris, the African National Memorial Bookstore in Harlem, and the Library of Alexandria and Basra Central Library in Egypt and Iraq. Brave Books includes an interactive play space and reading shelf in our children's area. We spotlight Brave Books through activities at our monthly Kids Create events; on our field trips; and during an annual middle and high school matinee featuring a writer whose work relates to that year's theme (past visitors include Vaunda Micheaux Nelson and Naomi Shihab Nye!).
Our 2019-2021 exhibition is Brave Books: Casa Camino Real and Literature of the US-Mexico Borderlands. Created in collaboration with author and bookseller Denise Chávez, this exhibit includes a mural of her store, Casa Camino Real, and interactive playhouses that celebrate adobe architecture, desert animals, and the many cultures of the borderlands.