Nantucket’s One Book, One Island selection for 2022 is “The Midnight Library”

For sixteen years, One Book, One Island (OBOI) has united the intrepid beings who live on the island of Nantucket during the harsh, cold and windy winter months. This collaborative community project is designed to promote reading and community and encourage the entire population to read, reflect and participate in thematic activities that foster lifelong learning for all ages. We also strive to include a variety of audiences and reading levels and to select a title that is available in translations and alternate formats.

This time of year is especially cold and quiet, and OBOI offers a brilliant occasion for a sense of communal warmth to be shared widely. All events are offered free of charge and we give away at least 500 copies each year.

The book selected for the 2022 Nantucket Island OBOI is the midnight library by Matt Hayg. “Few fantasies are more enduring than the idea that there might be a second chance at a life already lived, a kind of magical reset where mistakes can be erased, regrets addressed…and choices altered.” The New York Times. In this novel, Haig tackles compelling issues through a main character, Nora Seed, who attempts suicide and must explore what it means to live in the gray area between life and death. The book also touches on topics including small acts of kindness that can have a big impact and the power of insight. the midnight library it won the Goodreads Choice Awards for Best Fiction and became a bestseller upon publication. Haig is also known for reasons to stay alive (to sunday time bestseller), the children’s novel A boy named Christmas, how to stop time, Y Notes on a nervous planet.

The 2022 One Book One Island events for 2022 are dedicated to the memory of Jim Lentowski. He was involved from the early years of One Book, One Island as Executive Director of the Nantucket Conservation Foundation. Jim passed away on July 6, 2021 after a long battle with cancer.

The program is made possible by funding from the Tupancy-Harris Foundation and the Hale Family Foundation, along with financial and staff support from various organizations on Nantucket.

The places to pick up a free copy of Midnight Library beginning January 25 are:

  • The Nantucket Athenaeum
  • the corner table
  • Nantucket Book Partners (Mitchell’s Book Corner & Bookworks)

Pending locations as of January 25 include:

  • The Nantucket Historical Society, open in February
  • ink and mirror
  • El Mercado Salvadoreño, for copies in Spanish
  • Saltmarsh Center, for large print copies

Over a dozen One Book, One Island events will take place from March 18 to April 3, with more events likely to be added as we head into March. Check back for the event schedule in The Insider’s Guide to Nantucket for a complete list.

MARCH 18 – APRIL 3…Visit an art exhibit:
MIDNIGHT MAGIC at the Nantucket Artists Association
Join us for the launch of One Book, One Island on Friday, March 18 for a continuing showing of “Midnight Magic” at the Nantucket Artists Association Visual Arts Center at 24 Amelia Drive. A take-and-make art project that relates to the midnight library will also be available for children.

MARCH 18 – APRIL 3Participate in this interactive project:
the midnight library contains a “Book of Regrets”, and the main character is encouraged to read this book and let go of his regrets. Stop by the Nantucket Historical Society at the Whaling Museum on Broad Street between March 18 and April 3 and write a personal regret on one of the smooth stones outside the museum. Place your regret next to the NHA Squid sculpture and choose a “Wish” stone. This interactive art project will culminate on April 3 when participants can watch a live stream of all the regrets being released into the harbor.

Enjoy a stroll through the Atheneum Garden for this month’s selection of storytelling tours sharing the title OBOI, The midnight library. But this is an illustrated children’s book by Kazuno Kohara about an unusual library that is only open from midnight to dawn. In striking block-printed images, a ponytailed night librarian and her three assistant owls help each and every visitor find the perfect book or activity. The Squirrel Gang wants to practice their noisy new material; Miss Wolf reads a sad book and sheds tears like rain all over the reading room; and Turtle needs a library card so he can finally get out at closing time. Everyone is in for a long and busy night. Pick up your accompanying Grab & Go boat on the steps of The Weezie Library on Saturday, March 26, starting at 9:30am, while supplies last!

MARCH 19…NISHA BOOK DISCUSSION for ages 8-12, at The Atheneum
In Midnight Library, our main character finds solace and companionship with the pets in his many lives. Our OBOI author, Matt Haig, has also written children’s books, and we will be featuring another of his works, be a cat, at a book discussion facilitated by the Nantucket Safe Harbor for Animals Fifth Grade Book Club. Join us at the Ateneo Gallery on Saturday March 19 at 10 am

MARCH, 19…a narrative event in The DREAMLAND:
the midnight library Imagine how sometimes even small decisions turn out to be life changing. Join us in Dreamland to hear Nantucketers talk about the decisions that have shaped their lives.

MARCH 21 AND 28… check out two VIRTUAL “YUMMY MONDAYS”:
In the midnight library, one of the character’s lives involves pub grub and another is a vineyard owner. Join Janet from the Nantucket Atheneum for more episodes of the Yummy Monday series and featured cooking lessons in honor of One Book, One Island. Register through the Ateneo calendar.

  • March 21, 7 pm – Virtual – Wine Tasting
  • March 28, 7 pm – Virtual – Pub Food

MARCH 22 at 6:00 p.m.DISCUSSION ABOUT THE BOOK The Midnight Library in Spanish
Zacil Nash will be at The Atheneum to discuss The Midnight Library.
Ann Scott will be at The Atheneum for a discussion on The midnight library.

MARCH 31 at 5:30 p.m.Persuade, Prevent, Refer (PPR Training)
In the midnight library, the main character struggles with feelings of loneliness and hopelessness, and with suicide. Fairwinds brings us a community training event to educate us on how to recognize if someone is suicidal, ways to ask questions, and how to offer support. Anyone can learn to persuade, prevent and recommend during this event in the Great Hall of the Athenaeum.

Ann Scott will be at The Atheneum for a discussion on The midnight library.

APRIL 3 at 12 noon…THE HUMAN LIBRARY, at the Ateneo
In the midnight library, the main character has the opportunity to experience many other lives that he could have lived. In our own lives, there are choices we have to make. But, there are some aspects of our lives that we do not actively choose. The Human Library is, in the true sense of the word, a library of people, where human beings serve as open books that many of us would not normally have access to. Every human book on our shelf represents a group in our society that is often subject to prejudice, stigmatization, or discrimination due to lifestyle, diagnosis, belief, disability, social status, or ethnicity. Join us at the Atheneum for a chance to learn and “don’t judge” in a Q&A forum.

More OBOI 2022 events are in the works – check the calendar for updates!

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