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One Book One Community 2020


Recurring Events

  • One Book One Community Logo
  • Moon of the Crusted Snow book cover
  • One Book One Community announcement with author Rice Waubgeshig pictured

One Book, One Community (OBOC) was created to promote reading to adults in Waterloo Region, to celebrate books and writing, to promote Canadian authors and books, and to build a sense of community through the shared experience of reading. Now in its 19th year, One Book, One Community continues to bring great Canadian books and authors to Waterloo Region.

Each year, the OBOC committee announces the title selection in April, promotes the book throughout the summer, and hosts free author events in September. Watch the Waterloo Region Record, a One Book sponsor, for notices of community events as they develop, or check the One Book, One Community website at

The 2020 One Book One Community selection has been announced and this year’s book is Moon of the Crusted Snow, by Waubgeshig Rice.

This novel is a gripping post-apocalyptic survival story set in an isolated First Nations community in northern Ontario. This story of struggle, courage, and hope in uncertain times is perfect for readers, as we face the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Each year the One Book One Community committee chooses a title that everyone in the region should read. It must be written by a Canadian author, appeal to a broad audience, and – most importantly – resonate deeply with readers. This is a story that will capture your imagination and spur questions about how we can protect our values and a shared sense of humanity during times of crisis and conflict.

With winter looming, a small northern Anishinaabe community goes dark. Cut off, people become passive and confused. Panic builds as the food supply dwindles. While the band council and a pocket of community members struggle to maintain order, an unexpected visitor arrives, escaping the crumbling society to the south. Soon after, others follow.

The community leadership loses its grip on power as the visitors manipulate the tired and hungry to take control of the reserve. Tensions rise and, as the months pass, so does the death toll due to sickness and despair. Frustrated by the building chaos, a group of young friends and their families turn to the land and Anishinaabe tradition in hopes of helping their community thrive again. Guided through the chaos by an unlikely leader named Evan Whitesky, they endeavor to restore order while grappling with a grave decision.

Blending action and allegory, Moon of the Crusted Snow upends our expectations. Out of catastrophe comes resilience. And as one society collapses, another is reborn.

To help keep our community safe from the threat of COVID-19, we will be taking OBOC online this year through digital programming and content. The OBOC 2020 author events will be presented as online author interviews this Fall on Wednesday, September 23 at 2:00pm and Thursday, September 24 at 7:00pm.

If you want to explore gripping post-apocalyptic worlds, engage with First Nations writers and perspectives, and discover new visions of our future world, check out the If You Liked Moon of the Crusted Snow Booklist.

Visit for more information about our special digital programming for 2020 and join the online region-wide book club to experience and share Moon of the Crusted Snow.


Submitted by sue chamberlain (not verified) on

Good pick for this year's OBOC. So timely during Covid19 & Indigenous rights issues going on now.

Submitted by Meghan (not verified) on

Thanks, Sue. I'm so glad to hear you found the book worthwhile and I know the rest of the OBOC committee members will be pleased to hear it too.