Past Picks

Bringing Maryland together since 2008

One Maryland One Book picks are stories that ring true long after their year is over. Explore past picks and find a new favorite!

If you would like materials for any prior selections, please contact alewis@mdhumanities.org.

Book Cover Year Title Author
2019 What the Eyes Don’t See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City Mona Hanna-Attisha
Bloodsworth_cover 2018 Bloodsworth: The True Story of the First Death Row Inmate Exonerated by DNA Evidence Tim Junkin
Purple Hibiscus book cover 2017 Purple Hibiscus Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Full Cover All American Boys 2016  All American Boys Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
2015 The Boys in the Boat Daniel James Brown
 The Distance Between Us 2014 OMOB 2014 The Distance Between Us: a Memoir Reyna Grande
 King Peggy 2013 OMOB 2013 King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed an African Village Peggielene Bartels and Eleanor Herman
 The Cellist 2012 OMOB 2012 The Cellist of Sarajevo Steven Galloway
 Absolutely True Diary 2011 OMOB Cover 2011 The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Sherman Alexie
 cover of Outcasts United 2010 Outcasts United Warren St. John
 Song Yet Sung 2009 OMOB Cover 2009 Song Yet Sung James McBride
 A Hope in the Unseen 2008 OMOB Cover 2008 A Hope In the Unseen Ron Suskind
  • “The school I am reporting on is designed as an alternative center for students who are not successful in the “regular” classrooms in our district. These students are challenged by a number of factors, including emotional problems, discipline issues, etc. This particular book was one that a number of students were able to relate to and engage with. As a consequence, students who do not normally read became active participants in both reading and discussing!”

    One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “The impact of this particular book was probably stronger than any other Maryland One Book due to the connections we could make with real world events and police brutality in the headlines. Many groups were reading and discussing the book at our school: Student Equity Team, Drama Club, Faculty book club, sociology and English classes. It fostered important discussions about race relations.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 teacher
  • “A sophomore on our school’s state-champ runner-up varsity football team was so taken by Joe’s story of the sophomore year on the boat that he got his dad (the coach) and several members of his team to read the book even though they weren’t assigned it in class. Another student described a discussion she got into with her math teacher after school about the relevance of the English curriculum and used her experience with Brown’s work and the field trip to convince her teacher that humanities are just as important as STEM. Great stuff!”

    ​One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “For most of my 10th grade students, this was the first book they have read from cover to cover.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 teacher
  • “Left on my own, I would choose the same kind of books over and over again. Now, [participating in One Maryland One Book,] my reading experience is broader and richer and all the more enjoyable.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 participant
  • “I completed the book club with 22 students, all of them on the JV football team – so not your stereotypical group of book club attendees. On the last day of our book club experience I asked students for some feedback and also asked if they would be interested in participating in another book club. Nearly all of them said that this was the first time they had ever participated in a book club, and a few said it was the first time they had actually read an entire book. I keep hearing back from them, too, [asking] ‘When is the next book club starting up?’. The discussions we had were powerful and meaningful–this was truly one of the most moving experiences I have had as an educator.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 teacher
  • “[One Maryland One Book] brings cross curricular teachers together to the library to read, discuss topics and social issues in the book. It’s a way for students to read good books without the pressure of an assignment.”

    One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “[One Maryland One Book] taught me how much we need to talk and listen to one another.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 participant
  • “One of my students, a boy who works 35 hours a week at McDonalds, took the time to write me a letter stating the book had changed his life.”

    ​One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “[One Maryland One Book] is wonderful; enlightening, explorative, innovative, [and] educational.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 participant
  • “We had our best attendance, ever, for a book discussion, in the seven years I’ve been here.”

    One Maryland One Book 2015 participant
  • “I had two students participate who told me they’ve never finished a book before and they finished this one and want to read more!”

    ​One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “The discussion of the [2015 One Maryland One] book could not have been better. Everyone had a particular part of the story that touched them. One of the newcomers was an experienced rower and gave us wonderful insight into the physical and spiritual aspects of the sport. It is the first time in my ten years with this group that everyone loved the book.”

    One Maryland One Book 2015 participant
  • “This program is a gift, literally and figuratively!”

    One Maryland One Book 2015 teacher
  • “[One Maryland One Book taught me that] these types of book discussions that include diverse populations across the state open necessary dialogues to help solve problems. We need to have many more.”

    One Maryland One Book 2016 participant
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Maryland Humanities is a statewide, educational nonprofit organization that creates and supports educational experiences in the humanities that inspire all Marylanders to embrace lifelong learning, exchange ideas openly, and enrich their communities.
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(410) 685-0095
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