Popular community reading program coming to Hamilton

A community reading program that attempts to get everyone in a city to read and discuss the same book is coming to Hamilton in the fall. One City One Book has become popular across the country, and preparation has already begun by the Lane Library to select a book for the initiative.

Community members Helen Motley and Honi Cohen wanted to bring the idea to Hamilton and get people interested in the program, according to Carrie Mancuso of the Lane Libraries.

Mancuso said their enthusiasm for One City One Book was contagious and that got the ball rolling to bring the program to the city.

“We are in the very early stages of planning it right now,” Mancuso said. “So far what we have done is brought together the two volunteers and then we formed a committee including the city of Hamilton. We decided that we would like to have it this fall. The first piece of organizing it was that the committee suggested different books and we then narrowed it down to three.”

The three books that the committee wanted to get feedback from the public on were “The Boys in the Boat” by Daniel James Brown, “Hidden Figures” by Margot Lee Shetterly, and “Behind the Beautiful forevers” by Katherine Boo.

Each book has been criticilly acclaimed, and Mancuso said it is the committee’s hope that this inaugural effort will tak eoff and become popular in the city.

“We wanted to make sure that we garnered support early on in this process so we could engage with the public in the fall when we do this,” she said. “After the book is chosen we will be looking to engage with other partners in the community to discuss how we can have different events to tie the community together to discuss this book.”

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The final three books selected for Hamilton’s One City One Book program:

“The Boys in the Boat” by Daniel James Brown

Out of the depths of the Depression comes the account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin what true grit really meant.

“Hidden Figures” by Margot Lee Shetterly

The true story of the black female mathematicians at NASA whose calculations helped fuel some of America’s greatest achievements in space. The book has been made into a major motion picture.

Originally math teachers in the South’s segregated public schools, these women answered Uncle Sam’s call during the labor shortages of World War II.

“Behind the Beautiful Forevers” by Katherine Boo

Pulitzer Prize winner Katherine Boo tells the story of families striving toward a better life in Annawadi, a makeshift settlement in the shadow of luxury hotels near the Mumbai airport.

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