Through the One State / One Story: The Year We Left Home Community Read program, Hoosiers are invited to join in the statewide read of Jean Thompson’s novel as part of Indiana Humanities’ INseparable initiative.

<i>One State / One Story: The Year We Left Home</i> Community Read

A Community Read is a series of three or more programs that explore the themes and ideas of Jean Thompson’s The Year We Left Home, especially as they relate to Midwestern identity and urban/rural dynamics. Taking place at 28 locations throughout Indiana in 2020, at least one of the programs offered is a book discussion, because there’s nothing better than talking about great books with curious people. Other events might be speaker programs, community conversations, exhibits, hands-on activities and more. Whatever the program, we aim to inspire Hoosiers to think about the idea of home and talk about the past, present and future of our Hoosier communities.


The Year We Left Home follows the Erickson family through the many changes affecting American life at the end of the twentieth century. From city rooftops to country farms, college campuses to small-town main streets, the characters in Thompson’s novel search for fulfillment and happiness in an ever-changing, often alienating country. The story asks us to consider the enduring, uniting power of place—why we choose to leave and when we decide to come home. Read more about why we chose The Year We Left Home. 


To learn more about the One State / One Story: The Year We Left Home Community Read program, read through the program guide. This resource provides tips and ideas for your program series, discussion questions, supplementary information and more.


Community Read project directors are required to attend one training webinar. Follow the links below to sign-up!


Congratulations on being selected to host a Community Read! Here are some useful resources to help you plan and promote your program series.


Contact Megan Telligman, program manager, | 317.616.9409