“The Boys in the Boat” selected for 2017 One Book, One Community program


We are thrilled to announce the 2017 selection of Daniel James Brown’s New York Times best-seller “The Boys in the Boat.”

“The Boys in the Boat” details the true story of 9 working-class boys from the University of Washington who ultimately shocked the world by defeating the most talented rowing teams at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Brown used the boys’ own journals to recreate the epic adventure, which is the inspiration for the PBS documentary, “The Boys of ’36’.”

Libraries and Historical Resources Director Sarabeth Kalajian says the book was a natural choice for 2017’s One Book program, considering that Sarasota County will host the 2017 World Rowing Championship at Nathan Benderson Park.

“‘The Boys in the Boat’ is a captivating tale of triumph over adversity that’s rich in historical context and strong characters,” says Kalajian. “As the eyes of the world will be on Sarasota and Bradenton for the 2017 World Rowing Championship, reading this fascinating true story also offers the opportunity for an increased appreciation of rowing.”

The One Book concept was created in 1996 to help foster a shared love of reading by encouraging everyone within a community to read and discuss the same book concurrently. Sarasota County introduced its One Book program in 2003 as a way of connecting the area’s diverse communities.

Originally, the program recognized local authors, but over the past several years has expanded to world-renowned writers. Each summer, a committee selects the book, and in January, the committee hosts a public event for the author to discuss the book with the public. This celebration includes events at Sarasota County libraries and other locations throughout the county.

Anyone can participate in One Book One Community by attending an event or hosting a book discussion group, serving as a book discussion group leader or hosting a film or online discussion.

As part of the celebration, Sarasota County is partnering with the World Rowing Championship to bring the author to Sarasota on January 26. The World Rowing Championship will host the author for a ticketed luncheon in Lakewood Ranch. Sarasota County libraries and the Library Foundation of Sarasota County will present a free evening lecture by the author at the Venice Performing Arts Center. More information about both events will be available soon.

To learn more about how to participate in One Book and for updated programming and event information, continue to visit our website.

Start a conversation about One Book!