Williamsburg Regional Library and William & Mary Libraries partner for One Book One Community, an annual event that encourages our community to come together to have a shared reading experience. WRL hosts a series of events throughout the month that tie into the book. These programs complement the One Book One Community keystone event, a visit from the author.

The author visit is made possible thanks to the generosity of William & Mary and the Friends of Williamsburg Regional Library Foundation.

One Book One Community 2024

2024 Selection: The Displacements by Bruce Holsinger

“Hypnotic.” – New York Times

“Cinematic.” –USA Today

“I gripped the covers of this book as though it might be blown from my hands. . . powerful.” – Ron Charles, The Washington Post

When Luna—the world’s first category 6 hurricane—makes landfall, it triggers a descent of another sort. Homes destroyed, family members missing, and finances abruptly cut off, so many of “the displaced” find everything they assumed about their lives now up for grabs. Told primarily from the eyes of one family, many stories are represented as evacuees from across the American South are transported hundreds of miles to a FEMA megashelter where their new community includes an insurance-agent-turned-drug dealer, a group of vulnerable children, and a dedicated relief worker trying to keep the peace.

Holsinger teaches at the University of Virginia and is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship. He is the author of four novels, including The Displacements and The Gifted School, and many works of nonfiction.

WRL Programs

Special thanks to the Friends of WRL Foundation for supporting One Book One Community programs.

Prepping for Disaster

March 11, 2 pm – Stryker Center, Room 127

The Williamsburg Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program was implemented in order to educate residents about disaster preparedness for any hazards that may impact our community; like the hurricane mentioned in The Displacements. Learn about CERT training and the city’s response in a natural disaster.

National Weather Service Information

March 13, 4 pm – Williamsburg Library Theatre

Eric Seymour, Warning Coordination Meteorologist from the National Weather Service, will talk about tropical weather with a view of weather products specific to the tropical program and threats associated with hurricanes.

Creative Pottery

March 15, 3 pm – James City County Library

Local artist Lynn Trott will provide materials and teach participants how to make a small bowl. Finished bowls will be glazed, fired, and returned to the library for pickup. Registration required. Call 757.741.3300, option 2. For ages 18+.

One Book One Community Book Discussion

March 16, 2 pm – Williamsburg Library & Online

Join us for a Book Discussion, in-person in Room B of the Williamsburg Library, or virtually on Zoom.

One Book One Community Book Discussion (Turning Pages Book Group)

March 19, 6:45 pm – Williamsburg Library & Online

Join us for a Book Discussion, in-person in Room B of the Williamsburg Library, or virtually on Zoom.

Author Visit: Bruce Holsinger

March 20, 6:30 pm – Williamsburg Library Theatre

Bruce Holsinger is the author of four novels, including The Displacements and The Gifted School, and many works of nonfiction. His books have been recognized with the Colorado Book Award, the John Hurt Fisher Prize, the Philip Brett Award, the John Nicholas Brown Prize, the Modern Language Association’s Prize for a First Book, and others. He has written for The New York Times, Vanity Fair, and many other publications and has been interviewed on NPR’s Weekend Edition, Here & Now, and Marketplace. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship. He teaches in the Department of English at the University of Virginia, where he specializes in medieval literature and modern critical thought and serves as editor of the quarterly journal New Literary History.

Special thanks to Friends of WRL Foundation for supporting this program.

One Book One Community Book Discussion

March 21, 6:45 pm – James City County Library & Online

Join us for a Book Discussion, in-person in the Cosby Room of the James City County Library, or virtually on Zoom.

Hurricane and Natural Disaster Preparedness

March 22, 10 am – James City County Library

Michael Teener, Emergency Management Planner for James City County, shares an overview of how James City County prepares for disasters. The presentation will include insight into working with FEMA, the disaster recovery process, as well as tips for individual & household emergency preparedness.

Climate Change and Forest Fires Virtual Reality Experience

March 26, 11 am – James City County Library

Multiple time slots available for this ten-minute virtual reality experience about how climate change is fueling more forest fires in the American West. No registration required.

Rising Tides, Sinking Coast: How Coastal Communities Can Adapt to Surging Sea Levels

March 28, 6:30 pm – Williamsburg Library Theatre

Rising seas, frequent flooding, and subsiding land threatens coastal communities around the globe. Dr. Molly Mitchell, a Research Assistant Professor with the Center for Coastal Resources Management at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, has made it her life’s work to understand these threats and how they affect communities. Dr. Mitchell will give us a primer on sea level rise – what causes it, how it is changing around the United States, and what can be done to address it – as well as share the work she does to promote resilience in coastal communities.

*Event days and times are subject to change.

Past Years of One Book One Community


The New American, micheline aharonian marcom

The selection for the 2023 One Book, One Community program is Micheline Aharonian Marcom’s book, The New American. This “harrowing, heartbreaking story” (Kirkus Reviews) depicts the epic journey of a young Guatemalan American college student, a “dreamer,” who gets deported and decides to make his way back home to California.


Palaces for the People, Eric Klinenberg

The 2022 One Book, One Community program focused on Eric Klinenberg’s book, Palaces for the People, which explores how shared spaces can positively impact society. In his book, Klieneberg reminds us that democracy is fortified by people coexisting together in public and that public spaces can produce community, belonging, and unity.


Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You, Jason Reynolds

The selection for 2021’s program is national bestseller Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi. The book shines a light on the many insidious forms of racist ideas–and on ways readers can identify and stamp out racist thoughts in their daily lives.


There There, Tommy Orange

The inaugural selection for One Book, One Community was Tommy Orange’s There There, which was a breakout bestseller and finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize. The book explores themes of native people living in spaces and the challenges they face from depression to unemployment to struggles with identity.