One Book, One Chicago Fall 2001
1st edition dust jacket courtesy Printers Row Fine & Rare Books
One Book, One Chicago cultivates a culture of reading and discussion in Chicago by bringing our diverse city together around one great book. Reading great literature provokes us to think about ourselves, our environment and our relationships. Talking about great literature with friends, family and neighbors often adds richness and depth to the experience of reading. The idea behind One Book, One Chicago is to have all Chicagoans read the same book at the same time to create a kind of citywide book club.
Our inaugural One Book, One Chicago selection is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Perhaps you read To Kill a Mockingbird in high school. Perhaps you have never read the book. Either way, consider reading it and discussing the book with those around you. Measure it against your wealth of life experiences. Treat yourself to the richly drawn characters, the compelling social justice issues and the poignant moments that make To Kill a Mockingbird an American classic.
You can find a copy of To Kill a Mockingbird at the Chicago Public Library, at your local bookstore or perhaps on your bookshelf at home. Whether you share your thoughts with your neighbor or plan a book discussion group, I am sure you will find the experience to be enlightening and thought provoking.
Richard M. Daley, Mayor
City of Chicago
From Harper Lee
When the people of Chicago assemble in various parts of the city to read and discuss To Kill a Mockingbird, there is no greater honor the novel could receive. People of all backgrounds and cultures coming together to put their critical skills to work—nothing could be more exciting! Or fruitful: when people speak their minds and bring to discussion their own varieties of experience, when they receive respect for their opinions and the good will of their fellows, things change. It is as if life itself takes on a new compelling clarity, and good things get done.
Bueno suerte, everybody! Les amo!
Harper Lee, author, To Kill a Mockingbird
From Gregory Peck
To Kill a Mockingbird is about bigotry. True, for me the most beautiful scene is the moment when the Judge drops by to ask Atticus to take the case in defense of Tom Robinson. Casually put and casually answered, the question needed no answer. The judge knew it would not be possible for Atticus to say no. As for Jem and Scout, they learn a sense of honor from Atticus. That is all they need to carry them through life.
Gregory Peck, actor, To Kill a Mockingbird