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One Maryland One Book author tour comes to Howard County virtually

Lisa See is the author of "The Island of Sea Women," which has been chosen by Maryland Humanities for the One Maryland One Book program this fall.
Lisa See is the author of "The Island of Sea Women," which has been chosen by Maryland Humanities for the One Maryland One Book program this fall. (Patricia Williams/Patricia Williams)

The Howard County Library System, in partnership with Maryland Humanities, will host a virtual author talk Tuesday with Lisa See, author of “The Island of Sea Women,” the One Maryland One Book this year.

“Every year, the author of the selected book comes to Maryland and tours the state,” said Andrea Lewis, senior program officer for Maryland Humanities. “This year, all events will be virtual and take place between Oct. 4 and 7.”

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This is the 13th year for the One Maryland One Book program, which was created to bring people together throughout the state through a shared reading experience, according to the Maryland Humanities website. Once the selected book is announced, usually in March, various events are organized throughout the year, with Maryland Humanities providing free reader’s guides, free books, bookmarks and more.

“The Island of Sea Women,” a novel by Lisa See, has been chosen by Maryland Humanities for the One Maryland One Book program this fall.
“The Island of Sea Women,” a novel by Lisa See, has been chosen by Maryland Humanities for the One Maryland One Book program this fall. (Courtesy Maryland Humanities/Baltimore Sun Handout)

“It is a community reading program,” Lewis said. “Organizations of all types from across the state join us every year to read.”

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The program is funded through a number of different sources, including grants, Lewis said.

In July, the decision was made to move the author tour to a virtual format. The author talk on Tuesday will be between 60 and 90 minutes long, Lewis said. Lisa See will open the talk with some comments followed by a discussion with Laura Yoo, professor of English at Howard Community College.

“Lisa See’s book presents not only a lovely story about friendship between two women but also shares historical information about Korea and Jeju that many readers probably haven’t come across before,” Yoo wrote in an email.

“As a Korean American who immigrated to the U.S. at a young age, I have big gaps in my knowledge of Korean history. Reading ‘The Island of Sea Women’ gave me an opportunity to ask my mother questions about that time period and to do my own research. I look forward to talking with Ms. See about her creative process and her research that went into creating the story of Mi-ja and Young-sook.”

The audience will have time to answer questions at the end.

“We are attempting to replicate what folks might experience in person,” Lewis said. “People must register. It will be livestreamed, too.”

The 2020 One Maryland One Book Author Tour featuring Lisa See, author of “The Island of Sea Women,” will take place online at 11 a.m. Tuesday. To register, go to mdhuamanities.org.

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