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Library hosts Gulf Coast Reads: On the Same Page

The Promise book coverLamar University’s Mary and John Gray Library will host Gulf Coast Reads: On the Same Page as part of the annual regional reading initiative focused on promoting the simultaneous reading or listening to a selected title by those living along the upper Texas Gulf Coast. The community-reading event will be held at 2 p.m., Oct. 30, in the University Reception Center on the 8th floor of the library.

The event will feature “The Promise,” by author Ann Weisgarber. “The Promise” was a starred review in Publishers Weekly, a finalist for the Ohioana Book Award in Fiction, a Spur Award Finalist for Best Historical Fiction.

Weisgarber, who lives in Galveston and Sugar Land, will present a writing workshop at the event which will also feature displays by Lamar University Archives and Special Collections. More information on the author can be found at

“The Promise” is set in 1900. The heroine, Catherine Wainwright, must leave her comfortable life in Ohio after a scandal. She travels to Galveston and marries the recently widowed Oscar Williams, a childhood admirer whom she has not seen in years. She is unprepared for the life that awaits her. The weather is sweltering, Oscar's home is rustic and remote, and his little boy, Andre, resents her presence. But it's Oscar who most unnerves her. He has expectations that Catherine is unable to fulfill. Then there is Nan Ogden, Oscar's housekeeper. Catherine's arrival comes as a shock to Nan. Not only had she promised Oscar's first wife that she would take care of Andre, but also she has feelings for Oscar that she struggles to hide. Meanwhile, a powerful hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico gathers strength and spins toward Galveston.

Ann WeisgarberEach year, a representative committee of librarians selects a title for Gulf Coast Reads that has a broad appeal to adults in the region, is recognized in authoritative and professional journals, is available in multiple formats from print to downloadable content, and preferably, is available in multiple languages.

The goal of the reading initiative is to encourage communities to read the same title during October to encourage readers to come together in discussions about it with neighbors, co-workers, friends and their families, as well as in classrooms and in libraries throughout the region.

Public, school, college and university libraries throughout the greater Houston-Galveston area and Southeast Texas participate in Gulf Coast Reads. For more information visit