Beanstack and Lerner Publishing Group Offer Unlimited Book Access for Winter Reading Challenge

Masthead Waves

Edutech startup Beanstack and Lerner Publishing Group offer libraries and schools free access to books to help readers of all ages explore diversity, empathy, and action through literature.


This January marks the fifth year of Beanstack’s Annual Winter Reading Challenge. Lerner Publishing Group will sponsor the challenge, which supports public libraries and school systems throughout the United States and Canada. This year’s challenge theme is Read for a Better World, encouraging readers of all ages to explore diversity, empathy, and action through literature. In addition to providing free access to all of the eBooks needed for the challenge,  the publisher will award book collections, signed books, and virtual author visits to winning libraries and schools.


Wintering at Home

Beanstack, the software platform created by Zoobean, is the number one choice for reading challenges among librarians and readers alike. The web and mobile apps make it easy for administrators to set up and manage challenges, and even easier for more than six million readers on the platform to log and track their reading.


While many communities utilize Beanstack for Summer Reading programs and various monthly challenges throughout the year, the company’s flagship challenge takes place each year in January, coinciding with wintertime in North America. This coming year, in tandem with Winter Reading, Beanstack will officially launch Reading List Challenges—a new feature where readers can log reading for challenge-specific books and earn badges along the way. 

Participating libraries and schools will have unlimited simultaneous multi-user access to Lerner published book titles for the duration of the challenge, directly in the Beanstack web and mobile apps. That means every reader at participating schools and libraries will have instant access to quality titles with no holds, wait times, or borrowing limits. Readers will be able to select from over a dozen age-appropriate books on varying topics that all align with this year’s Winter Reading theme, Read for a Better World. "Our Winter Reading Challenge is a great tradition that inspires so many people to read, and this year’s theme aligns with two of our core values—inclusion and awesomeness," said Zoobean co-founder Felix Lloyd.



Read for a Better World

Lerner Publishing Group’s Read for a Better World collection offers a path for readers “to reflect on their own identity, the world they live in, and how they can act for a more just world.” This Winter, curated books will be available through Beanstack as part of #WinterRead2022 with Lerner’s generous support. Participating communities are invited to explore books from bestselling and acclaimed authors including Irene Latham, Charles Waters, Shelley Rotner, Angela Johnson, Kao Kalia Yang, Bob Raczka, Miranda Paul, Lee Wind, Traci Sorrell, Katey Howes, and Laura Gehl as well as classic titles including Twelve Years a Slave, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, and Little Women. Select authors will participate in a virtual event at a library or school that achieves the highest level of participation from their community.


The challenge will feature various Lerner titles that explore Social Emotional Learning, such as A Girl Like Me (Ages 0-5), Ruth and the Green Book (Ages 5-10), Into the Streets: A Young Person's Visual History of Protest in the United States (Ages 10-18), and Dear Teen Me: Authors Write Letters to Their Teen Selves (Ages 18+). Dictionary for a Better World will be a featured title and prize for winning communities. This inspiring resource for middle-grade readers is organized as a dictionary; each entry presents a word related to creating a better world, such as ally, empathy, or respect.


"Lerner Publishing Group is excited to partner with Zoobean for another great Beanstack Reading Challenge to help support both public libraries and school systems," said Adam Lerner, President and CEO of Lerner Publishing Group. “The new Read for a Better World collection highlights Lerner’s continued dedication to diversity and the curated list of books being used in the Winter Reading Challenge showcase some of our top authors and illustrators.”


For more information about the 2022 Annual Beanstack Winter Reading Challenge, including prize details and how to join, visit the challenge website:





Zoobean, Inc. builds products that help communities and individuals achieve reading goals by tracking reading and participating in reading challenges. The company’s flagship product, Beanstack, helps public libraries and schools create, manage, and measure reading challenges. Zoobean’s Badge Books are sticker books that work hand in hand with the Beanstack mobile app. Zoobean’s investors include Kapor Capital, Mark Cuban, RevUp Capital, the AT&T Aspire Accelerator, and Amazon’s Alexa Fund. Its founders were previously Washington, DC’s teacher of the year and Google’s first head of K-12 education outreach.




Lerner Publishing Group creates the highest-quality nonfiction and fiction content for children and young adults in a variety of subjects and formats. Based in Minneapolis since its founding in 1959, Lerner Publishing Group is one of the nation’s largest independent children’s book publishers with fourteen imprints: Lerner Publications, Millbrook Press, Carolrhoda Books, Twenty-First Century Books, Graphic Universe™, Hungry Tomato™, Darby Creek, Kar-Ben Publishing, Carolrhoda Lab™, LernerClassroom, ediciones Lerner, First Avenue Editions, Lerner Digital™, Zest Books™, as well as Lerner Publisher Services. For more information visit our website at

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