One Book, One Town: Sharon Reads Together is a community reading program with the goal of building community spirit through a shared reading experience. Each year the One Book One Town (OBOT) committee chooses one book and then plans many enrichment programs and discussions inspired by the themes within that book. We search for a book that will appeal to men and women of all ages, is a good story, and will inspire numerous exciting programs for all ages. Programming runs for approximately 4 weeks each spring.
One Book is funded primarily through the generosity of grants and donations.
One City One Book is a generic name for a community reading program that attempts to get everyone in a city to read and discuss the same book. These programs take the idea of a localized book discussion club and expand it to cover a whole city.
The first such program was “If All of Seattle Read the Same Book” in 1998, started by Nancy Pearlat Seattle Public Library’s Washington Center for the Book. Other cities copied the idea, and the Library of Congress listed 404 programs occurring in 2007.
Each city’s program has its own goals; these typically include building a sense of community and promoting literacy. Programs typically involve more than having everyone read the same book. Some other activities that have been included are: book discussion sessions, scholarly lectures on the book or related topics, a visit by the author, exhibits, and related arts programming.
The Center for the Book at the Library of Congress tracks all known One Book One Community programs and the books they have used.