Columbia Gorge Community College, The Dalles-Wasco County and Hood River County library districts, and other local partners are embarking on the “Big Read” this month. The community read effort is centered around the novel “Into the Beautiful North,” the story of a 19-year-old Mexican woman battling drug dealers in her hometown near the U.S.-Mexico border. A month of events kicks off with a presentation by author and Pulitzer Prize nominee Luis Urrea Friday evening at 5 p.m. in The Dalles Civic Auditorium. CGCC’s Dan Spatz says “Into the Beautiful North” was chosen because the issues in the book strike close to home with the dream of opportunity in America represented in the story. Free copies of the book, in English and Spanish, are available at local libraries and at Klindt’s Booksellers in The Dalles. A month-long event schedule is on The Dalles-Wasco County Library website. The Big Read is being made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.