Digging for Words: José Alberto Gutiérrez and the Library He Built
Why this book?
Digging for Words is the beautifully written and illustrated story of how one person can make a difference. Former sanitation worker José Alberto Gutiérrez found a discarded book on his route and realized he could fill a gap—the absence of a library in his Bogotá, Columbia barrio. Collecting books he found, he created a library to empower himself and countless others. Angela Burke Kunkel frames the story with Gutiérrez’s work and the life of a young boy, also named José, who loves to read and can’t wait for Saturday when Señor José’s library is open. I love this book for its true and inspiring nature, its emphasis on recycling/reusing, its celebration of the importance of stories (and access to stories), and the way books sustain and connect us.