Maryland Humanities Council

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How is the One Maryland One Book (OMOB) chosen?

A call for suggestions is sent out each November to the general public, educators, librarians, book groups, and other partners, based upon an annual theme and pre-determined criteria. Suggestions are researched to be sure they fit the established criteria.  Then the work of the selection committee begins. They review and narrow down the potential choices to the top ten.  In January the committee meets to discuss the list and parses the list down to the top three choices, later voting to establish the One Maryland One Book pick.

What is the theme for the 2015 One Maryland One Book?

The 2015 One Maryland One Book theme is "Sports: the human drama of athletic competition," in all its different interpretations.

What is the Selection Criteria for One Maryland One Book?

In addition to having a focus on the yearly theme, the book can be either fiction or nonfiction and should:

  • be able to generate sustained discussion on the year's theme
  • be of interest to people in the state of Maryland
  • appeal to a wide range of readers of different backgrounds/reading levels
  • be able to connect to high school age readers as well as adults
  • be of manageable length (up to 350 pages)
  • be available in paperback and priced affordably
  • be in print and audio, and if possible, in electronic format, large print, Braille, film and translation
  • a living author is a consideration, but not a criterion
  • a Maryland author is a consideration, but not a criterion

What books were finalists for One Maryland One Book this year?

  • The Distance Between Us by Reyna Grande
  • My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor
  • The Other Wes Moore by Wes Moore

How can I participate in OMOB?

Click here to learn how you can take part, either as an individual, or as a program partner.  MHC offers free support materials—Reader’s Guides, Teacher’s Guides, bookmarks, and posters—to groups, organizations, and businesses that sign on as official partners.

Do you provide free books?

Given the statewide scope of the program, we are unable to provide copies of the book for individuals and book clubs directly. However, books are made available to participating public libraries and public high schools via the generosity of our donors.  Most bookstores are made aware of our One Maryland One Book pick each year and make the book easily available for purchase.

MHC provides some funding support to libraries and nonprofit organizations, as well as secondary and postsecondary schools, to foster creative public programming across the state. For information on the Author Tour or funding support contact Andrea Lewis at

How much does it cost to attend an author tour or other OMOB event?

One Maryland One Book programs are free and open to the public.  Seating is first-come-first served.  Sign up for MHC’s Email newsletter, Opening Eyes, to receive advance notice of events, or connect with us on Facebook or on Twitter via @MDHumanities. We recommend you tweet using the hashtag #1Md1Bk to join a conversation.

How do you choose where the One Maryland One Book author travels during your author tour?

Each year, MHC invites Maryland organizations to co-host the statewide Author Tour. The author is typically available for a limited number of official tour stops, so the application process is competitive.