The History of The Global Read Aloud

The Global Read Aloud was born due to Neil Gaiman and lazy summer night’s ride in the car listening to NPR.  Being a massive Neil Gaiman fan, I immediately turned up the dial when his name was mentioned and was enthralled with the report of the One Book – One Twitter project happening that summer.  In a moment of admiration, I turned to my husband, Brandon, and asked him why someone had not done that with kids and his reply was; “Why don’t you?”

So I did.  A few days later a blog post was written inviting people to join some sort of a read aloud using some sort of tools to connect kids through a book.  I had no plan, I had few answers, but I had an idea and sometimes that is all it takes.  That year, in September 2010, the very first Global Read Aloud book The Little Prince was read aloud to about 150 kids through 60 different facilitators and it was amazing.  Since then the project has grown organically through the passion people that participate.

Participant Count and Year

2010 = 150 kids

2011 = 6,000 kids

2012 = 30,000 kids

2013 = 144,000 kids

2014 = 308,000 kids

2015 = 573,000 kids

2016 = 1,000,000 kids and I stopped counting

The Global Read continues to grow because of the incredible people that participate and the amazing books that authors create.  It continues to be a free project, where the only thing you need is the book and some way to connect with others.  Who knows where this project will go, but one thing is for sure; we are connecting the world through a book every single year.

Past Books

The thing that makes the Global Read Aloud truly incredible is the amazing books that have been the center of the project since its inception.  Since 2012, the GRA has also been lucky enough to have some of the authors involved during the six weeks.  This has only elevated the project to a new level of connectivity


The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery


Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown


The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

  • To see Katherine’s final Q&A video, go here

Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White


Eric Carle author study

Marty McGuire by Kate Messner

Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper

  • To see Sharon’s final Q&A video, go here

Stupid Fast by Geoff Herbach


Peter H. Reynolds author study

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo

The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jenni Holm

  • To see Jenni’s final Q&A video, go here

One for the Murphy’s by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green


Amy Krouse Rosenthal author study

The Year of Billy Miller by Kevin Henkes

Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

Fish by L.S. Matthews

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina


Lauren Castillo author study

The BFG by Roald Dahl

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt

All American Boys by Brendan Kiely and Jason Reynolds


Mem Fox author study

Fenway and Hattie by Victoria Coe

The Wild Robot by Peter Brown

A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness


Julie Flett and Monique Gray Smith  author study

A Boy Called Bat by Elana K. Arnold

Amal Unbound by Aisha Saeed

Refugee by Alan Gratz

Love, Hate and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed


Yuyi Morales author study

Stella Diaz Has Something to Say by Angela Dominguez 

Front Desk by Kelly Yang

The Bridge Home by Padma Venkatraman

The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline


Juana Martinez-Neal author

Planet Omar:  Accidental Trouble Magnet by Zanib Mian and illustrations by Nasaya Mafaridik

Indian No More by Charlene Willing McManis and Traci Sorrell

Prairie Lotus by Linda Sue Park

Stamped – Racism, Antiracism, and you by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi

All About the Books

Here at the Global Read Aloud, I know that it is all about the books.  It is all about that read aloud that we share that make our classrooms go quiet, that makes the students beg for one more page, for the satisfaction and sadness that comes from finishing a read aloud.  I take books very seriously and finding the books for the GRA is something I hold very dear.  The GRA has since 2018 in particular been focused on highlighting voices who focus on #OwnVoices experiences as well as allow us to have broad global conversations.  

If you are an author and want to submit your own book, go here.

If you are a reader and want to submit an idea for a book, fill out this form

To see the past books that have been chosen, go here.

To see how books are chosen, go here.

To see past and current contenders, go here.