One Book One Community at Matthews Library

OBOC logoYou vote for the title in August! The title is announced in October!  In January read the book!  And during Library Lovers’ month and Book Lovers’ month in February the campaign kicks off with special events, author talks and book discussions hosted at area libraries to celebrate reading the title.  Each year’s selection is available at your local library and at most area bookstores. Are you reading?

2016 One Book One Community Selection:

Gaining Ground: A Story of a Farmers’ Markets, Local Food, and Saving the Family Farm by Forrest Pritchard

Gaining Ground by Forrest PritchardThe Book:

With humor and pathos, Forrest Pritchard recounts his ambitious and often hilarious endeavors to save his family’s seventh-generation farm in the Shenandoah Valley. Through many a trial and error, he not only saves Smith Meadows from insolvency but turns it into a leading light in the sustainable, grass-fed, organic farm-to-market community.
There is nothing young Farmer Pritchard won’t try. Whether he’s selling firewood and straw, raising free-range chickens and hogs, or acquiring a flock of Barbados Blackbelly sheep, his learning curve is steep and always entertaining. Pritchard’s world crackles with colorful local characters—farm hands, butchers, market managers, customers, fellow vendors, pet goats, policemen—bringing the story to warm, communal life. His most important ally, however, is his renegade father, who initially questions his son’s career choice and eschews organic foods for the generic kinds that wreak havoc on his health. Soon after his father’s death, the farm becomes a recognized success and Pritchard must make a vital decision: to continue serving the local community or answer the exploding demand for his wares with lucrative Internet sales and shipping deals. 
More than a charming story of honest food cultivation and farmers’ markets, Gaining Ground tugs on the heartstrings, reconnecting us to the land and the many lives that feed us. (from the publisher’s website)

The Author:

Forrest Pritchard is a seventh generation farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding degrees in English and Geology from the College of William & Mary. Upon returning from college in the mid 90s, he took over his grandparents’ farm – primarily growing GMO corn and soybeans – hoping to make the land profitable for the first time in decades. On harvest day, when five tractor-trailer loads of grain reaped a meager paycheck of $18.16, he realized his family’s farm must radically change course. The following season, he devoted himself to farming organically and sustainably, raising free-range cattle, pigs, sheep, goats and chickens.

Twenty years later, his farm Smith Meadows is one of the oldest “grass finished” farms in the country, and sells at leading farmers’ markets in Washington DC. Chronicling his farming adventures, Forrest’s book Gaining Ground, A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food and Saving the Family Farm was named a top read by Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post and NPR’s The Splendid Table,and made the New York Times Bestseller list.  (from the author’s website via the OBOC website)


You can visit the author’s official website here.

Visit our online catalog to borrow a copy of Gaining Ground.

Visit the One Book, One Community website for program information, reading guides, and much more!