DC Reads 2019

DC Reads 2019

One City. One Book. One Great Read.


In 2019, America still celebrates the first African American who achieves a milestone. But how does that person deal with the pressure and often the loneliness that comes with being the first or the only African American in a space? This May, the Library will explore those themes with programs and events centering on Nafissa Thompson-Spires's debut short-story collection Heads of the Colored People as part of the Library's DC Reads celebration.

Included in Best Books of 2018 Lists from Refinery29, NPR, The RootHuffPostVanity FairBustleChicago TribunePopSugar, and The Undefeated. Heads of the Colored People is a collection of short stories that grapple with race and explore the lives and identities of a diverse set of African American characters with both incredible wit and sensitivity.

Special Events

An Evening with Nafissa Thompson-Spires
Friday, May 31, 7 p.m.
1901 Mississippi Ave. SE

Performance area

Join the Library for an evening of conversation with Heads of the Colored People author Nafissa Thompson-Spires. 
Registration is required. RSVP here.

The Necessary Changes Have Been made - A Discussion at Howard University 
Thursday, May 2, 6:30 p.m.

Blerdcon at the Library
Saturday, May 11, 1 p.m.

Mosaic on the Move: Mental Health and the Arts 
Tuesday, May 21, 7 p.m. 

Teen Writing Workshop with author Nafissa Thompson-Spires
Friday, May 31, 4 p.m.

Discussion Groups: Print and electronic copies of the book can be found here with your library card.

Francis Gregory Adult Book Club
Tuesday, May 7, 6:30 p.m.

Coffee and Conversation - with discussion of passages from the book
Southeast Neighborhood Library
Monday, May 13, 2 p.m.

Southeast Book Club
Wednesday, May 15, 7 p.m.

Georgetown Book Club
Thursday, May 16, 7:30 p.m.

East City Book Shop/Capitol Hill Reads
Thursday, May 16, 6:30 p.m.

Politics is Personal Book Club
Loyalty Books, Thursday, May 16, 7 p.m.

Downtown Day Services Center
Thursday, May 23, 1 p.m.

Lit on H
Solid State Books,Thursday, May 23, 7 p.m.

Page Turner Book Club at Anacostia Library
Thursday, May 23, 7 p.m.

Too Lit to Quit
Loyalty Books Silver Spring
Saturday, May 25, 3 p.m.

Francis Gregory Short and Sweet Discussion Group
Tuesday, May 28, 2 p.m.

Tenley-Friendship Book Discussion Group
Wednesday, May 29, 2 p.m.


Online Discussions

#ShortStoryDC Twitter chat: Monday, May 13, 5 p.m.
DC Reads on Full Service Radio: Tuesday, May 14, 2 p.m.

Discussion Guides

Adult Discussion Guide 
Youth Discussion Guide