One Book, One Island 2006

Posted January 19, 2006

It's One Book, One Island voting time again. Every year, Vineyard libraries and bookstores put out ballot boxes with a short-list of books to be voted on. There are five adult and five children/young adult books to chose from. Readers are asked to vote for a favorite in each category by Jan. 31.

Ann Bassett, events coordinator at the Bunch of Grapes, explains that the annual program sponsored by local libraries and bookstores is patterned on nationwide one book, one-community programs. In past years, Islanders have read and discussed "Spartina" by John Casey, "Fahrenheit 451" by Ray Bradbury, "The Buffalo Soldier" by Chris Bohjalian, and "The Big House" by George Howe Colt. Young readers' books have included "Holes" by Louis Sacher, "Hoot" by Carl Hiaasen, "The Breadwinner" by Deborah Ellis, and "Tangerine" by Edward Bloor.

Discussion groups and special events are held relating to the books. For example, last year's tour of a local "Big House," hosted by Dolly Campbell, was well-attended. Every year at least one of the two authors chosen has appeared here, to talk about the book and answer questions. In 2003, in honor of the book "The Breadwinner," about a young Afghan girl's struggle to feed her family, Vineyarders raised more than $500 to help pay for an Afghani teacher for a year.

The adult books on the ballot this year are: "The Enduring Shore" by local author Paul Schneider, "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson, "The Master" by Colm Toibin, "The Plot Against America" by Philip Roth, and "An Unfinished Season," by another local author, Ward Just.

The young adult books are: "Airborn" by Kenneth Oppel, "Charlie Dollarhide" by Robert Holland, "Godless" by Pete Hautman, "The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe" by C.S. Lewis, and "Persepolis" by Marjane Satrapi.

Ms. Bassett encourages local readers to learn about the nominated books and vote in each category by Jan. 31. Winners will be announced the first week in February, and events will be held in early April, giving everyone plenty of time to finish reading the selections.

For more information, call Ann Bassett, 508-693-2291.