Amber Stone, owner of the bookstore Twice Sold Tales, is renovating a camper to create a mobile library to serve Franklin, Oxford and Somerset counties. Her goal is to promote literacy in rural areas. Amber Stone photo

Twice Sold Tales and Daily Bulldog editor Amber Stone is creating a mobile library to bring books to areas in Franklin, Oxford and Somerset counties to “really be a champion of literacy in rural areas.”

The intention of Backroad Books is to establish regular routes and stops in what Stone calls “book deserts” — “a neighborhood or a township or area that doesn’t have any access to books” such as areas not near a library or bookstore.

“I think our public libraries are such an amazing asset but they aren’t everywhere,” Stone said. “I think even public libraries are sometimes hard for kids to get to.”

Stone hopes to provide access to “books that (kids) can take home that are theirs.”

I know there are kids who don’t have books at home for various reasons,” she said. “My goal is to just get people feeling comfortable with books and if I get the books out of the store then they don’t have to feel pressure to come in.”

Stone will fill the renovated camper with donated books she acquires at Twice Sold Tales and give them to children in grades K-12 with an emphasis on younger ages.

She plans to establish collaborations between Backroad Books and other organizations and initiatives in the area, such as Literacy Volunteers of Franklin County and Somerset County and possibly United Way of the Tri-County Area.

Stone would like to work with Literacy Volunteers’ reading program that “promotes literacy across generations” by helping parents feel more confident in reading with their children.

Now, she hopes to have Backroad Books up and running in October in time for the Maine Mountain Harvest Festival.

She is collecting donations via GoFundMe at https://www.gofundme.com/f/bring-backroad-books-to-life to raise at least $3,000.


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