The action “One country- one book”

The idea is based on the USA-wide projects “One book-One Chicago” and "If All of Seattle Read the Same Book”, when the whole city reads the same work of fiction for the given period, and actively discuss it afterwards. In 1998, the action was held in American city Seattle for the first time under initiative of the Book Center of the city public library. The slogan of the action: "If All of Seattle Read the Same Book”, which was a great promotion of reading and enhancing the unity of citizens of the big city of north-west of USA. As a consequence the action was supported by librarians of other American cities, such as Chicago, Buffalo and Rochester. Thus for example, “One book – One Chicago” was initiated by Chicago Public Library with active assistance of Chicagoan municipality. Its main aim was to withdraw attention of adults and youth to simultaneous reading and collective discussion of the same book – in families and at work, in a company of friends and acquaintances, in the libraries, schools, bookstores, religious organizations, cafes, and other public places. During the day, city turns into the one big reading club.

In October 2000, the first city-sponsored literary festival titled “Chicago Book Week--City of Big Readers” was held. The agenda of the festival included book presentations with public discussions and other events. Within 7 weeks of organizing campaign thousands of Chicagoans read and discussed Pulitzer Prize winning novel by American writer Harper Lee (1926) “To kill a mockingbird” .The book raises important problems of racism and tolerance that are timely for Chicago.

At present, the idea of the project “One country-once book” got wide promotion in many countries of the world (Spain, Latin American countries, Korea, etc.). Particularly, in commemoration of 80th anniversary of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the author of the novel “One hundred years of Solitude” there was reading marathon by volunteers who read out loud without breaks within several days. The beginning of the marathon was initiated by Deputy Chairman of the government of Spain- Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega. Each participant had 15 minutes during which he should read out loud 7 pages of the novel, released 40 years ago.

In order to popularize the joint reading in Korea, children’s books were selected. The project succeeded among local population that actually allowed embedding annual tradition of reading books into the national programs: “one library-one book” and “one village – one book”. “The big reading adventure” is an annual event in the South-Western England. Every year, from January to March, all population of the area reads the same book. Thus, in 2006 they read the book by Jules Verne “Around the world in 80 days”.