Common Read

Jarrett J. Krosoczka's HEY, KIDDO Featured for One Book, One Region!

Courtesy of: The Day
Posted September 13, 2019

The 17th "One Book One Region Eastern Connecticut" initiative concludes with a Tuesday appearance at New London's Connecticut College by this year's honoree/author/artist Jarrett J. Krosoczka. He was selected for his graphic memoir "Hey, Kiddo — How I Lost My Mother, Found My Father, and Dealt with Family Addiction."

One Book One Region Eastern Connecticut aims to unite citizens of all demographics to discuss ideas and society through books and literature. Previous selections and authors include Pete Hamill ("Snow in August)," Khaled Hosseini ("The Kite Runner"), Yaa Gyasi ("Homegoing"), David Benioff ("City of Thieves"), Tori McClure ("A Pearl in the Storm"), and Reyna Grande ("Across a Hundred Mountains").

Since "Hey, Kiddo" was introduced as this year's choice, dozens of libraries, schools, book clubs and social organizations have participated in discussing the work.

"Hey, Kiddo" is the beautifully and poignantly written and illustrated account — often humorous, frequently sad — of Krosoczka's childhood, when he was raised in Worcester, Mass., by his grandparents while his mother struggled with heroin addiction. For years, all the young man knew, though, was that his mom was an affectionate but very infrequent presence in his life. Instead, his grandparents, who had several grown children of their own, provided love, comfort and support — albeit in a distinctively "old school" fashion typical of their own upbringing during the hard times of the Depression.

Krosoczka also had no idea who is father was for years. As "Hey, Kiddo" develops, the author uses flashback revelations to provide answers and context — a particularly effective way of conveying his own confusion and an ongoing sense of vague unease despite the security and reliability found through his grandparents, their home and the relationships with his aunts and uncles.

The most important development in his childhood was a fascination with and dedication to the craft of drawing. While certainly accepted in the school environment, Krosoczka's exploration of art, and the encouragement of his teachers and family, provided a life-force of creativity and expression that ultimately resulted in an enormously successful career.

Krosoczka was a well-established author illustrator of children's books and a husband and father of two young children when he finally decided to write "Hey, Kiddo." He's published more than 30 books including his Lunch Lady graphic novels. He's a two-time winner of the Children's Choice Book Awards Third to Fourth Grade Book of the Year and has been a finalist for the prestigious Will Eisner Comic Industry Award and National Book Awards 2018 for Young People's Literature. Krosoczka lives with his family in western Massachusetts and, earlier this week by email, answered a few questions about "Hey, Kiddo," his career, and the One Book One Region honor. Answers have been edited for clarity and space.

Read Jarrett’s Q&A with Rick Koster here!

Sweet Briar's Common Read is a Conversation Between Two Books, "Across Thousands of Years"

Courtesy of Sweet Briar College
Posted Aug 12, 2019


Sweet Briar College’s Common Read selection for the 2019-2020 academic year features not one book, but a pair of books “in dynamic and rich conversation with one another across thousands of years,” says Director of the Center for Creativity, Design and the Arts Carrie Brown. They are Madeline Miller’s No. 1 New York Times best-selling novel Circe — about the legendary sorceress and goddess who (among other things) turns men into pigs in “The Odyssey” — and Emily Wilson’s celebrated translation of The Odyssey, the first English translation by a woman.

The writers will visit campus and bookend the year: Madeline Miller on Thursday, Nov. 7, and Emily Wilson on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. Their presentations are free and open to the public.

“Both books are full of magic and mystery and monsters and morality,” Brown says. “They delve into the classical story of Odysseus’s return from the Trojan War with fresh insights about the experiences of women once seen only in the shadows of the famous epic.” Both have been praised for their language, she notes, as well their “visionary perspective and imaginative reach,” which makes them not just great works of literature, but also fun to read. And in both, Brown adds, “women emerge as modern, sympathetic and formidable figures in a literary and cultural landscape once dominated by a focus on the male experience.”

Boys and Girls Club of Tupelo Gear up for GINNY MOON this Fall!

Courtesy of WCBI News
Posted June 28, 2019

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Boys and Girls Club members in Tupelo are taking part in a city wide initiative that promotes reading and literacy. “Tupelo Reads” is an annual program that encourages residents to read the same book, and come together for activities promoting literacy.

This year’s book is Ginny Moon  the story of an autistic teenager.  Volunteers with “Tupelo Reads” have spent the past few days at the Haven Acres Boys and Girls Club, talking about key themes of the book with the young people. One of the most important is compassion.

“That was a big takeaway that they may encounter people who are different , not just with autism spectrum, but many other things and to deal with people that might be different in a compassionate way,” said Lisa Reed, chairperson of “Tupelo Reads.”

The book’s author, Benjamin Ludwig will visit Tupelo in September for “Tupelo Reads” community events.

Cumberland County College Announces One Book Title - GINNY MOON

Courtesy of: The Daily Journal
Posted May 2, 2019

Cumberland County College’s “One Book, One College” 2019-20 reading campaign has launched with the selection of Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig. Now in its 16th year, CCC’s successful One Book, One College concept was designed to get the campus and the community to bond by discussing relevant themes covered in a single book. A recommended read on CCC’s campus, members of the community are also urged to read the book.

Ginny Moon is a poignant and inspirational story of an autistic teenager who is searching for a place to call home. Ginny has been in foster care for years after being taken from her abusive birth mother and moved around to different homes. She is finally in a place where she’ll be safe and protected, with a family who will love and nurture her. But Ginny has no intention of belonging. She is determined to get back to her birth mother and make things right…even if it means going back to a place that was extremely dangerous.

A lifelong teacher of English and writing, Ludwig lives in New Hampshire with his family. He holds a master’s in English education and a Masters in Fine Arts in writing. Shortly after he and his wife married, they became foster parents and adopted an autistic teenager. Ginny Moon is Ludwig’s debut novel and was inspired in part by his conversations with other parents at Special Olympics basketball practices.

Cumberland’s One Book, One College program is highlighted each year with an on-campus visit by the author. The public is invited to meet Ludwig during his presentation and book signing on Oct. 16.

Fauquier Community Read to Feature BEFORE WE WERE YOURS, by Lisa Wingate

Courtesy of Fauquier Now
Posted March 14, 2019

For its 2019 Fauquier Community Read book, the county public library has selected a thought-provoking and complex tale of two families, two generations apart, forever changed by a 1930s adoption scandal.

A New York Times bestseller, Before We Were Yours, by Lisa Wingate, won the 2017 Goodreads Choice Award for Historical Fiction.

“In the spirit of a community read, people are encouraged to pick up the pass-along copies, read it and pass it along to another reader,” library Director Maria Del Rosso explained.

The Community Read will include “An Evening with the Author,” Thursday, May 16, at Highland School’s Rice Theater in Warrenton. Ms. Wingate will read from Before We Were Yours and discuss her process for research and writing. After a question and answer session, the author will sign copies of the book. Copies of Before We Were Yours will be available for purchase at the event from The Open Book.

Additional programs that address themes raised in Before We Were Yours have been planned for April and May, including book club discussions and genealogy presentations.

BEFORE WE WERE YOURS Celebrates 1 Year on NYT Bestseller List!


Congrats to A|U Author Lisa Wingate, who’s Before We Were Yours celebrates its one year anniversary this week as a New York Times Bestseller! This blockbuster hit is a thought-provoking and complex tale of two families, two generations apart… based on a notorious true life scandal.

Readers across the country have been captivated by Before We Were Yours, selecting for countless Book Clubs and library discussion groups. Lisa’s author events have been packed to capacity, owing in large part to the books powerful topic, and Lisa’s amazing ability to connect with readers in person.

Before We Were Yours is a perfect choice for One Book One Community programs! Interested in hosting her? The 2019 schedule is filling fast, so get in touch with us today!

Lisa Wingate could be the poster child for the perfect author. She’s gracious, kind, generous, super talented and knows how to engage an audience. The Pulpwood Queens and Timber Guys Book Clubs adore discussing her books. There is a good reason we invite her year after year; she sets the standard for great books to place in the hands of real readers. We are so thankful she continues to educate, enlighten, and tell a great story. Lisa Wingate is giving voice to those who could not tell their own.
— The Pulpwood Queens Book Club
We were thrilled to host Lisa Wingate at Books in Bloom on May 20, 2018, in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Lisa Wingate’s talk focused on her inspiration for writing and the culture and background of the historical period in which her novel, Before We Were Yours, was set. The author had a very good rapport with the audience, and was very engaging, relaxed and relatable. She was an inspiring presenter, engaging her audience immediately. The hour slipped away very quickly.
— Books In Bloom Literary Festival
A [story] of a family lost and found . . . A poignant, engrossing tale about sibling love and the toll of secrets.
— People Magazine
Before We Were Yours is sure to be one of the most compelling books you pick up this year. . . . [Lisa] Wingate is a master-storyteller, and you’ll find yourself pulled along as she reveals the wake of terror and heartache that is Georgia Tann’s legacy.
— Parade Magazine

Host Post | Fall 2018

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Welcome to the Fall 2018 Authors Unbound quarterly Host Newsletter! We'll use this space to keep you updated on what other outstanding hosts around the country are up to, provide valuable information on event management and organization, and feature authors who we highly recommend for your next author engagement.

Jennifer Haupt's IN THE SHADOW OF 10,000 HILLS Selected for Ann Katz Jewish Festival Common Read!

The Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts in Indianapolis will feature Jennifer Haupt's In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills as their 2018 Community Read this fall! Now in its 20th year, the festival spans three weeks of local, national, and international authors, filmmakers, performing artists and fine artists.

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Haupt's beautiful debut novel is a riveting family saga that spans from the turmoil of Atlanta during the Civil Rights Movement through the struggle for reconciliation and forgiveness in post-genocide Rwanda. At the heart of this literary novel that crosses racial and cultural boundaries is the search for family on a personal and global level.

Congrats, Jennifer!  And here's to many more community reads adoptions to come!! For our Indy readers, be sure to check out Jennifer's presentation on October 25th, 2018 at the Arthur M Glick JCC.

Adams County Reads One Book: A PIECE OF THE WORLD Selection Announced

Courtesy of The Gettsyburg Times
Posted June 29, 2018

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The Adams County Reads One Book Program was pleased to announce last week that they've selected Christina Baker Kline's A Piece of the World for their fall program.  Kicking off with an author appearance in late September, Adams County Reads will offer unlimited simultaneous downloads of the book, and has arranged lots of great programming and discussion groups around the selected title.  Happy Reading!

Host Post | Summer 2018

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Welcome to the very first Authors Unbound quarterly Host Newsletter! We'll use this space to keep you updated on what other outstanding hosts around the country are up to, provide valuable information on event management and organization, and feature authors who we highly recommend for your next author engagement.

Lisa Wingate Kicks Off If All Arkansas Read the Same Book - BEFORE WE WERE YOURS


Courtesy of
Posted June 1, 2018

Lisa Wingate's novel Before We Were Yours is the 2018 selection for the If All Arkansas Read the Same Book project. She'll be visiting local libraries this week, meeting patrons and signing books. Created in 2001, If All Arkansas Read the Same Book is an annual, statewide reading program designed to encourage the enjoyment of reading and to promote book discussion in libraries of all types across Arkansas.

Have a great trip, Lisa!

A PIECE OF THE WORLD Announced for Lake Forest Reads!

Courtesy of Lake Forest College
Posted May 17, 2018

Lake Forest College, in partnership with Lake Forest Library and the Ragdale Foundation, has chosen A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline as the 2018 selection for Lake Forest Reads: Ragdale. Baker Kline is also the author of the bestselling book Orphan Train.

Lake Forest Reads: Ragdale is a one book/one community program that fosters a culture of reading and a sense of community in our city. Each year, a title is selected from the works of writers affiliated with the Ragdale Foundation, the artists’ residency which has supported authors and their creative process for over 35 years.

The city of Lake Forest will celebrate this novel, a New York Times Bestseller, with a series of events, capped with a visit from Christina Baker Kline at the College on October 25, where she will engage in a conversation with Associate Dean of the Faculty and Professor of English Davis Schneiderman. More information regarding the October 25 event will be released in the coming months.

Christina Baker Kline

Christina Baker Kline

One Book Program Earns Arlington Heights Library a National Award

Courtesy of Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Courtesy of Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Courtesy of The Daily Herald
Posted May 9, 2018, 4:01PM

Officials with the Arlington Heights Memorial Library learned Tuesday that they had been named a winner of one of the most prestigious awards given by the American Library Association.

The library was one of eight to win the John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award, for its leadership in engaging the community through last year's "One Book, One Village" campaign, which featured Dave Egger's The Circle, and included a visit with the author.

Behold the Dreamers a Finalist for One Book, One New York - Vote now!


The NYC Mayor’s Office of Media Entertainment, Made in NY, and New York Magazine have announced that BEHOLD THE DREAMERS was nominated as one of the five books chosen for the return of “One Book, One New York,” the exciting city-wide initiative that brings book-loving New Yorkers together to read the same book at the same time. VOTE NOW for BEHOLD THE DREAMERS for #OneBookNY at Voting ends on 4/30.

Monroe One Book hosts "Meet the Author" with Jamie Ford

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Courtesy of The Monroe News
Posted Mar 24, 3018

Jamie Ford, the author of “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet,” this year’s selection for One Book, One Community of Monroe County, offered stand-up comedy and psychology lessons during Thursday’s Meet the Author event.

Wearing bright red sneakers, blue jeans and a blue sport coat, the heralded author offered a raw and entertaining glimpse at the genesis of his writing career. He also highlighted the emotional underpinnings of his international bestselling novel.

Vernon Area Libraries Join Together for Community Wide Read: Stolen Beauty


Courtesy of Arlington Heights Post
Posted Dec. 2, 2017

Arlington Heights, IL — Three north suburban libraries are teaming up to encourage their patrons to all read the same book and discuss it with their friends, neighbors and families. "One Book, One Community" partners Cook Memorial, Indian Trails, and Vernon Area public library districts have selected "Stolen Beauty" by Laurie Lico Albanese as their community-wide read this winter.