The One Book Project

Read the Book


Listen to the Book on CD Listen to the eAudiobook


About the Book

A revelatory account of a kind of poverty so extreme, and so often hidden, most Americans don’t think it exists. Kathryn Edin teamed up with Luke Shaefer to make a surprising discovery: the number of American families living on $2.00 per person, per day, has skyrocketed to one and a half million American households, including three million children. Where do these families live? How did they get so desperately poor? What do they do to survive? Not just a powerful exposé, $2.00 a Day delivers new evidence and new ideas to our national debate on income inequality.

Save the Date

Author Visit & Book Signing with Kathryn J. Edin & H. Luke Shaefer
November 1, 2017 at the CSUB Icardo Center

Download Printable Events Brochure

Check out the entire calendar of One Book Project Events, including book discussions, family storytimes, & more!

Further Reading Resources

Interested in reading more and delving further into this year’s One Book? Check out these resources, including books, DVDs, and online links.

Community Partners

California State University, Bakersfield    Bakersfield College     Barnes & Noble
Kern High School District    Russo’s Books    Kern County Superintendent of Schools
Taft College    Sierra Club    Emmanuel Lutheran Church    Kern Literacy Council
Repair Cafe    Rosewood Senior Living    Community Action Partnership of Kern
KIT Community    Wallace Middle School    First 5 Kern    United Way of Kern County
Bike Bakersfield    Employers’ Training Resource / America’s Job Center of California
Norman Levan Center for the Humanities

Special Thanks to Bakersfield College, Bakersfield Homeless Center, Golden Empire Transit, Kern  Community Foundation, Kern County Supervisor David Couch – 4th District, Kern Golden Empire Television, The Mission at Kern County, Stewards Inc., & The California Endowment.

About The One Book Project

One Book, One Bakersfield, One Kern is a project that encourages the entire community to share experiences related to a single book through discussions, educational programming, and entertainment. The read is meant to pull a community together, cross cultural divides, and enhance understanding of our diversity, all while supporting literacy.

The program began in 2001 through the grassroots efforts of Jillian Fritch, an elementary school teacher who had read a story in the Los Angeles Times regarding One Book, One Community initiatives; at the time Seattle Reads and One Book Chicago were pioneers, and Los Angeles had decided to do a One Book project. Jillian was inspired to begin a project in Bakersfield. The first book was “To Kill a Mockingbird.” An array of community partners jumped on board, including education, nonprofits, local government, businesses, and media outlets. The Kern County Library became the lead organization in 2003.

Now in its 16th year, the One Book Project continues to reach out to our diverse Kern County community both in book choice and related programming. In 2010, the One Book Project began a partnership with California State University, Bakersfield’s “Runner Reader Program” (or First-Year Experience Program), which involves students reading a common book. Through this partnership, the community has benefited extended programming, including author visits and talks at CSUB at the culmination of the read. In November 2011, more than 1,400 people turned out to hear author Wes Moore speak about his book, “The Other Wes Moore.”

One Book, One Bakersfield, One Kern remains a grassroots project that relies on community partners and donations to provide related programming and copies of the book throughout the county. To find out how you or your organization can get involved, contact Andie Apple at 661.868.0730 or

Past Selections

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