Category Archives: One Book

Discovering Oneself in America’s Disappearing Wilderness

9780307461247By James Campbell, author of Braving It: A Father, A Daughter, And An Unforgettable Journey Into the Alaskan Wild (Crown, May 2016)

The Inupiat, of Alaska’s harsh Arctic coast, have a word to express the awe one feels in the presence of raw Nature. They call it uniari. In part, Braving It is about the pursuit of uniari. The book chronicles three trips that my teenage daughter Aidan and I made into the heart of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a far-off place that few will ever see. But some of the book’s other themes—that there is reward in courage and leaving your comfort zone and that often the best relationships are forged by adversity—lay closer to home. Continue reading

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Northern Arizona creates online materials for common read, The Underground Girls of Kabul

9780307952493When members of the class of of 2020 arrive at Northern Arizona University in August, they will engage in thoughtful discussion on The Underground Girls of Kabul — Jenny Nordberg’s powerful and moving account of young girls who dress as boys in deeply segregated Afghanistan where girls have almost no rights and little freedom.

NAU has created materials to augment discussions: a chapter map to parse out topics and connect them to the text; a flier complete with author Jenny Nordberg’s campus visit information to promote the book and support discussion leaders; and a bookmark with title information.

Click here to read more about The Underground Girls of Kabul.

Click here for more information on the author’s speaking arrangements.

Click here to learn about similar materials that NAU created for their 2015 Common Reading program feature Bryan Stevenson and Just Mercy.

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A Young Doctor Comes Face To Face With His Own Mortality

9780812988406Dr. Paul Kalanithi died in March of 2015 while completing the manuscript for his book When Breath Becomes Air (Random House, January 2016).  Here, his widow Lucy explains why college students will be interested in his writing.

Dear Reader,

At the age of 36, my husband Paul Kalanithi was on the verge of finishing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon at Stanford when his health began to falter. A CT scan confirmed what we had both come to suspect: he had lung cancer, widely disseminated. In the very hospital where Paul had learned to perform surgery, he was checked into a room and handed a blue patient’s gown. We held each other tightly in his hospital bed, both understanding that the cancer was terminal. Continue reading

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Each Of Us Is More Than The Worst Thing We’ve Ever Done: Just Mercy With Bryan Stevenson

Bryan Stevenson -- credit Nina SubinBy Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption (Spiegel & Grau, October 2014)

My grandmother was the daughter of people who were enslaved in Caroline County, Virginia. She was born in the 1880s, her parents in the 1840s, and the legacy of slavery very much shaped her and the things she would say to me. When I visited my grandmother, she would hug me so tightly I could barely breathe. After a little while, she would ask me, “Bryan, do you still feel me hugging you?” If I said yes, she’d let me be; if I said no, she would assault me again. I said no a lot because it made me happy to be wrapped in her formidable arms. She never tired of pulling me to her. “You can’t understand most of the important things from a distance, Bryan. You have to get close,” she told me all the time. Continue reading

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Lehigh University selects The Most Human Human and Ready Player One for 2015 Summer Reading Program

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When members of Lehigh University’s Class of 2019 arrive on campus during the fall of 2015, they will begin their college experience by discussing both The Most Human Human and Ready Player One. Aligning with the Summer Reading Program’s “Technology and the Digital World” theme, The Most Human Human is author Brian Christian’s exploration of the ways in which computers, and research into artificial intelligence, are reshaping our ideas of what it means to be human. Ready Player One, set in 2044 when humans have wrecked the climate and famine, poverty, and disease are widespread, focuses on teenager Wade Watts’ quest through a virtual world. Continue reading

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Momentum Continues for Muck City With “One Book” Adoption

Muck CitySarasota County Libraries in Florida has announced Muck City by Bryan Mealer as their 2014 “One Book” reading selection. Muck City tells the story of the Belle Glade (FL) high school football team, which has sent 27 of its players to the National Football League since 1985.  Despite excelling at football, the town also spawned chronic poverty, teeming migrant ghettos and violence that crippled the future’s of its young people. The book ultimately portrays a community grappling with a difficult past and uncertain future, but with the fierce will to survive and thrive.

“Since this year is the program’s 10th anniversary, we wanted to feature a book, which like the original Sarasota One Book, related to Florida’s history,” said Barb McDonald, outreach coordinator for the Sarasota County Library System.  McDonald added that the book will appeal to readers of all ages and was selected because of its inspirational message.  Mr. Mealer plans to attend “One Book” events beginning in early 2014.

Clear here to read more about Sarasota’s “One Book” program.

Clear here to listen to an interview with Bryan Mealer.

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Henrietta Lacks Remains a Standout on FYE® Circuit with ONU Adoption

Henrietta Lacks TPOhio Northern University in Ada, Ohio will be using The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks for their 2013 Summer Reading Program.  All incoming freshmen are required to read the book prior to arriving on campus, and will participate in small group discussions during Fall Orientation and Convocation.  Students will be given prepared questions to guide their reading. Continue reading

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Chicago picks The Warmth of Other Suns for One Book, One Chicago

The Warmth of Other Suns The Chicago Public Library has chosen The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson as the One Book, One Chicago selection for 2013! While the One Book, One Chicago festivities usually only last for one month, The Chicago Public Library has decided to extend them for a full year in order to fully explore Wilkerson’s powerful work.

“It’s a fascinating book,” says library spokeswoman Ruth Lednicer. “At first you’re daunted by the size, but it becomes engrossing very quickly.”

In previous years, area schools such as DePaul University have participated in One Book, One Chicago. The Warmth of Other Suns has been a popular common reading choice, adopted in Common Reading programs at schools such as Howard University, University of Northern Iowa, and University of California, Davis.

Lednicer hopes that extending the program will encourage more readers to engage with the One Book, One Chicago activities that will begin in April. Each month through April 2014, the library will sponsor a talk or panel related to The Warmth of Other Suns, and smaller discussions and programs will take place in the neighborhood branch libraries.

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More Good News for Sonia Nazario’s Enrique’s Journey!

Sonia Nazario’s Enrique’s Journey is one of three finalists for the 2012 One Book, One Denver program.  The winner will be chosen by popular vote before June 22. Even more good news, Enrique’s Journey has also been selected as the First-Year Experience title for both Cabrini College in Philadelphia and University of Wisconsin, La Crosse. All incoming freshmen at both colleges will be reading this book for the Fall of 2012.

More than 50 colleges and seven cities have chosen Enrique’s Journey for their common or one city reads. Many colleges select the book because it goes beyond a platform to talk about immigration. While encouraging global awareness, the book provides broad and deep discussions of large themes students grapple with: loss and hope, survival, community, family, diversity, and redemption. Students relate to a boy close to their own age who steels himself with great determination to get through difficult circumstances.

For a full list of schools that have adopted Enrique’s Journey, and related teaching guides and videos, visit Sonia Nazario’s website.

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UTC Unviels Outcasts United as FYE 2012 Selection!

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga has officially announced Outcasts United by Warren St. John as their title selection for the university’s 2012 Freshmen Year Reading Experience. After receiving more than 50 entries in favor of choosing Outcasts United, this book will now be read throughout the entire UTC campus and among all incoming Freshmen students.

“I love this book!   I’m really enthusiastic about it and I hope you will be, too,” said Dr. Sara Jorgensen, Assistant Professor, African and World History, serves as chair of the FYRE committee.  “This is not a feel-good book, but it is an inspiring book. It will make people think about a lot of important issues.”

To read the university’s full announcement of this selection, click here. Also be sure to check out UTC’s unveiling video posted here!

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