Regular library visitors, left to right, Brenda Starkey and Danielle Brown deciding on which books to take home PHOTOS BY SHAWN NOWLIN

Lisa Beal has been reading her whole life. Growing up, the Roanoke County native was regularly encouraged by her parents to expand her horizons and deepen her thought process. Throughout high school, Lisa says she was more likely to explore a Judy Blume novel than spend money on name brand clothes. Last month, she heard about the Salem Public Library Adult Reading Challenge. Toni Morrison is one of the most celebrated authors of all time, according to Lisa, and three of her books – The Bluest Eyes, Song of Solomon and God Help the Child – are all selections Lisa chose to complete her challenge.

Last year, the Adult Reading Challenge was offered on a Bingo board, and approximately 100 people participated. “This fall, we have a Monopoly board, with each color on the board representing a different type of challenge,” Library Director Ann Tripp said. “The challenges range from ‘read a book published the year you graduated high school’ to ‘read a book with your favorite color as the cover.’

When you read a book…

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