‘The End of Night’ chosen for next community read

Trish Ridgeway, center, co-chair of One Book One Community for Winchester, Frederick and Clarke, announces the 2015 selection, "The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light," by Paul Bogard, an assistant professor of English at James Madison University. Also pictured, from left, are Amy Hall, supervisor of secondary reading, English and performing arts for Frederick County Public Schools; Veerle Foreman, committee member of One Book One Community, and John Huddy, library director of Handley Regional Library in Winchester. Josette Keelor/Daily

WINCHESTER — The 2015 One Book One Community selection for the Winchester area is “The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light,” by Paul Bogard.

At a Friday night announcement on the roof of the Shenandoah Discovery Museum in Winchester, One Book One Community Co-Chair Trish Ridgeway said the nonfiction book is a great book with a great topic.

Though it’s not always easy choosing a book among all the possibilities, committee member Glenne White said she voted for this one in part because of her daughter’s experience living in New York City.

“Because of all the artificial lights, she never sees the moon, she never sees a real star and we just thought it was really important for those of us who can see stars to appreciate it and to know how important it is,” White said.

Bogard is an assistant professor of English at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, where he also teaches creative nonfiction and environmental literature.

Now in its 13th year, One Book One Community for Winchester and the counties of Frederick and Clarke started as an effort to spark community interest in reading the same book during the same time period. The concept began in 1998 in Seattle as a way of enhancing community spirit and promoting literacy, though each participating city or region chooses its own books.

Other similarly titled community reading programs have included the Maryland Humanities Council’s One Maryland One Book, Winnetka-Northfield (Illinois) libraries’ One Book, Two Villages and the Boston Book Festival’s One City One Story.

In previous years, the local One Book committee has chosen a mix of fiction and nonfiction in an effort to interest a variety of people.

Past selections include 2014’s “The Monuments Men,” by Robert Edsel; 2013’s “O Pioneers,” by Willa Cather; “2010’s “To Kill a Mockingbird,” by Harper Lee; and 2003 inaugural choice of “Rocket Boys,” by Homer Hickam.

Ridgeway said she suggested Bogard’s book after hearing him speak at the National Book Festival in Washington, D.C., and learning he lived in the Shenandoah Valley.

“I hope this is lucky 13 for us,” she said.

Bogard will speak at 7 p.m. Sept. 23 at Daniel Morgan Middle School and will lead a writing workshop at 10:30 a.m. Sept. 24 at Handley Library on the lower level in Benham Gallery.

Other One Book events will be a showing of the documentary “The City Dark,” at 7 p.m. Sept. 9 at Handley Library, followed by refreshments; and a sky movement and moonlight walk at 7 p.m. Sept. 17 at Blandy Experimental Farm & State Arboretum of Virginia in Millwood. All events are free.

For more information, visit One Book One Community-Winchester, Frederick County, Clarke County on Facebook or call Handley Regional Library at 540-662-9041, ext. 11.

Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or jkeelor@nvdaily.com