The Big Read, a community reading program organized by the Santa Monica Public Library, will feature “Into the Beautiful North” by Luis Alberto Urrea.

This contemporary novel features 19-year-old Nayeli who lives in a small Mexican town nearly devoid of men, including Nayeli’s father, after most have gone to the U.S. to seek work. After being inspired by the classic film, “The Magnificent Seven,” Nayeli and her three closest friends travel north into the U.S. to bring back men to protect their town from encroaching drug dealers.

This is the 12th year the library has selected a community-wide book.

There will be a series of workshops and discussions in the following months, which begins with a kick-off celebration on March 29 at the Main Library.

For more information and a full schedule of events, visit

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