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The North Shore branch of the NAACP has announced its 2024 Book Series, a lineup of online book discussion events focused on a selection of writings that examine the role and reality of race in our society. The organization has chosen Susie’s Stories of Rockport – the North Shore’s only Black-owned bookstore – as its partner and preferred vendor for the series.

The goal of the series – which will meet both online and in-person – is to keep conversations about race alive in the region throughout the year in a more intimate and less structured format than the group’s regular meetings. The North Shore branch chose to partner with Susie’s Stories to support a Black-owned business, keep money in the local economy, and work with business owners who share the values of nurturing diversity and intellectual dialogue.

Susie’s Stories opened in 2019 after owners Susie and Doug Rich spotted a For Rent sign in the window of a tiny store on Rockport’s Bearskin Neck. Susie, a writer of children’s books, thought the space might be perfect for a bookstore and the couple launched the tiny, book-packed business a few months later. The store will be offering NAACP members a 5% discount on the books in the discussion series.

The six discussion events are open to members and non-members alike. The schedule:

January 22, 7 p.m.: His Name Is George Floyd, by Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa, hosted by Sylvia Sellers Garcia, branch member and director of the 2024 Lowell Humanities Series. Zoom link to join.
April 23, 7 p.m.: How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America, by Clint Smith, hosted by Lauren McCormack, branch history committee chair. Zoom link to join.
May 2, 7 p.m.: Never Caught, by Erica Armstrong, hosted by Mercy Njuguna, branch secretary and healthcare committee chair
August 12, 7 p.m.: We Want to do More than Survive by Bettina L. Love, hosted by Heather Maes and Dan Anderson, education committee co-chairs
September 23, 7 p.m.: Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson, hosted by Michelle Sands, branch communications committee. Zoom link to join.
November 25, 7 p.m.: You Are Your Best Thing: Vulnerability, Shame Resilience, and the Black Experience by Tarana Burke and Brené Brown, hosted by branch communications committee member Heidi Wakeman