Thursday, September 22, 2011

One Book of Rutherford County Picks Fiction Phenomenon The Hunger Games

In the fall of each year, the One Book of Rutherford County program challenges local residents to join together to read a chosen book. This year’s selection is The Hunger Games, an adventure novel by Suzanne Collins. One Book is a collaboration of Read To Succeed, Linebaugh Library, Barnes & Noble and Middle Tennessee State University to promote reading and literacy in Rutherford County.

This work of fiction is set in a not-so-distant future in which reality has taken a turn for the worse and reality TV has taken a turn for the deadly. The United States has collapsed; in its place, the country of Panem is divided into the Capitol and 12 oppressed districts. Each year, a boy and girl from each district are selected by lottery to go to the Capitol and participate in The Hunger Games as a reminder of the Capitol’s control. The televised games are required viewing throughout the country as the 24 participants are forced to eliminate their competitors in a fight to the death. In District 12, formerly Appalachia, 16-year-old Katniss volunteers to compete when her younger sister’s name is called. As she and her male counterpart, Peeta, are whisked to the Capitol, they soon realize how difficult it will be, whether as friends or foes, to fight for their lives and their humanity.

The Hunger Games grabs you from the first page and doesn't let you go,” said Read To Succeed Executive Director Lisa Mitchell. “It appeals to teens and adults and provides a great opportunity for families to discuss all the issues raised.” This year’s selection is unique to One Book’s five year history, Mitchell added, in how it appeals to readers of all ages (12 and up) and both genders. The book, first in a trilogy, was on the New York Time’s bestseller list for over two years.

One Book co-chair Laura Beth Jackson said, “The Hunger Games speaks in a refreshingly original voice for our time. While being a wonderful fantasy novel, it also addresses very relevant issues of poverty, injustice, family relationships, and culture, and challenges us to examine what we believe and value. I'm thrilled about this choice for One Book and believe our community is in for a wonderful read.”

Mitchell expressed gratitude to this year's One Book committee, also co-chaired by Kory Wells, for their many months of reading and discussion to make this selection. The committee continues to work on plans to promote the selection, provide public forums for discussion through the winter, and perhaps have an event related to The Hunger Games movie, which is due out in March 2012.

Interested Rutherford County readers, businesses and organizations can learn more about getting involved by joining the One Book Rutherford Facebook page or visiting the One Book Rutherford Blog at

What Is One Book of Rutherford County?

One Book is a collaborative project of Read To Succeed, Barnes & Noble, Linebaugh Library System, and MTSU, created to challenge readers in Rutherford County to join in reading the same book. The objectives of One Book are to encourage reading among adults, to demonstrate to our children the importance of reading, to unify our community through a shared experience and to highlight an issue of importance by means of a book’s theme or subject matter.

How Can I Get Involved?

There are a number of ways every person and business in Rutherford County can be involved in the One Book experience.

Individuals: Read the book and encourage your friends and family to read it too. Take part in a neighborhood discussion of the book or participate in one of the events organized by One Book. A calendar of those events will be available on the One Book Rutherford Facebook page at or the One Book Rutherford Blog at If you’re part of a book club, consider having your group read the One Book selection between now and the end of April. If you’ve already read the book, encourage those around you to share in the experience. You can also help by volunteering to join the One Book committee or making a donation at

Companies: Companies and workplaces can encourage employees and customers to take the One Book challenge and read. They can also help further the One Book cause by becoming a sponsor of the project. For more information on One Book corporate sponsorship, contact Lisa Mitchell, Read To Succeed Executive Director at 738-READ.

For More on One Book and Our 2010-11 Selection – The Hunger Games:


The One Book Rutherford Facebook page

The One Book Rutherford Blog

Read To Succeed
PO Box 12161
Murfreesboro, TN 37129
(615) 738-READ

Executive Director Lisa Mitchell

Read To Succeed, the community literacy collaborative in Rutherford County, will promote reading, with an emphasis on family literacy. This non-profit initiative supports literacy programs and fosters awareness of the importance of reading.

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