Each year, Kitsap Regional Library invites the community to read together and recognize shared experiences through the power of story and conversation.
The idea of many people coming together around one book originated with librarian Nancy Pearl and the Seattle Public Library, with its groundbreaking Seattle Reads program in 1997. In an interview, Pearl shared:
"One of the things that was happening, that continues to happen today is that we all live in our own silos. The friends we have think the same way we do. The news we listen to is what we agree with. I thought that one of the things we need in society is much more civil discourse." Pearl continued, "I hoped we could choose books that had something important to say about what it means to be human and live in the world we live in."
Inspired by Pearl's work, Kitsap Regional Library launched the One Book, One Community program in 2008. Since then, the Library has explored new ways to connect this vision with a growing and increasingly diverse Kitsap community.
Past One Book titles have talked about hard things. Last year, the community discussed housing insecurity with the featured book "Evicted" by Mathew Desmond and immigration with Imbolo Mbue's "Behold the Dreamers" in 2019. In considering One Book for 2021, the selection team recognized that the community has already experienced a great deal of hardship, with recent events bringing unprecedented disruption to our lives.
Inspired by the continued strength of the Kitsap community, the Library selected hope and resilience as the theme to connect everyone in these otherwise uncertain times. This year, One Book features three titles around this theme: "Light of the World" by Elizabeth Alexander for adults, "Piecing Me Together" by Renee Watson for teens and "Clean Getaway" by Nic Stone for kids. By expanding the One Book reads to new audiences, the Library invites more of the community to connect around a story.
Outside of reading, there are many other ways to participate in One Book. The Library will host special events, activities, and discussions for all ages celebrating hope and resilience throughout September and October. Drop by any location of Kitsap Regional Library for a One Book guide, or visit KRL.org/onebook to see a complete list of upcoming events.
The path ahead is not always clear, but you don't have to journey alone. The Library welcomes you to come together with your community, support one another and learn from each other's unique experiences.
In partnership with Kitsap Strong, Kitsap Public Health, Dr. Lillian Robertson, Executive Director of the Marvin Williams Recreation Center and Dr. Kimberly Riley, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist.
Hope is in the conversation at KRL.org/onebook.
Kitsap Regional Library inspires our community to dream more, learn more, do more and be more. Meeting the needs of the growing Kitsap community, the Library maintains nine locations, home delivery and a digital library online at KRL.org.