CONTACT:  Gayle Peterson, Big Cat Advertising 415-884-3500.




December 28, 2012, Novato, CA:  The Marin County Free Library, along with City Public Libraries of Marin County and Community Partners Book Passage and Dominican University, is pleased to announce that the 2013 One Book One Marin selection has been awarded to PACKING FOR MARS: The Curious Science of Life in the Void by Bay Area author, Mary Roach.  The Launch Party to introduce the New York Times bestselling author will be held on Wednesday, January 30, 2013, 7:00 PM at Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera.

One Book programs take the idea of a localized book discussion club and expand it to cover a whole city or county.  Each year, cities across the US select a book of their choice and encourage their communities to read and discuss that book. 

The goal of One Book One Marin is to build a stronger, enriched community through library utilization, community dialogue, and the exploration of literature and culture.  A variety of community partners collaborate to bring the community interesting programming and events related to the book throughout a three-month period, February – April, each year.  Anyone can participate.  All events are free and open to the public.

Gail Haar, Director of Marin County Library Services and Honorary Chair of One Book, One Marin, notes, “This is the seventh year that One Book One Marin will bring the greater Marin community together to read and discuss and enjoy programming in our libraries and at Book Passage and Dominican University. I think of One Book as face to face social media, allowing folks of many ages and interests and backgrounds to find common ground to meet old friends and to make new ones.” 

 From getting tattoos to bungee jumping to eating maggoty cheese, humans undoubtedly do some strange things. But none of these activities comes close to the sheer weirdness of voluntarily¾eagerly, in fact¾confining oneself to a tiny room without a proper shower or toilet within a wasteland that lacks water, gravity, or oxygen for a month or even a year. Welcome to space. In PACKING FOR MARS: The Curious Science of Life in the Void Mary Roach enters the final frontier¾not the grand triumphs and tragedies that you see on TV but all the stuff in between¾the small comedies, the odd experiments, and the everyday victories.

In a line of work where one of the most beautiful sights to behold is that of a sun-illumined flurry of flash-frozen urine droplets being ejected from a spacecraft, Roach aptly notes, “space doesn’t just encompass the sublime and the ridiculous. It erases the line between.”  In PACKING FOR MARS, Mary boldly goes where no science writer has gone before, bravely posing all of the questions that you’re dying to answer but never thought to ask, such as: can you burp in space? Is sex without gravity better? What happens to your body if you go for weeks without bathing? And, how exactly do you eat and drink up there? Along the way, she gets to the bottom of urban myths, putting an end once and for all to the debate over whether it’s true that, as a vital research tool, space agencies pay ordinary people to lie in bed for months (yes), whether vomiting in your helmet leads to certain death (nope), and whether space travel makes astronauts taller (yep).

The Launch party at Book Passage on January 30 kicks off the celebration and introduces the author and programming events that take place during the months of February, March and April.  Most events take place at city and community libraries throughout Marin and are geared around themes of the novel.  The One Book One Marin program will conclude with a special event on April 18, 2013, at Dominican University’s Angelico Hall, featuring Mary Roach and KQED host Michael Krasny in conversation.

All events are free and open to the public.

This year's One Book One Marin program is funded by the Marin County Free Library, with support from Book Passage and Dominican University, and a large number of community sponsors.

For more information, contact Gayle Peterson, Big Cat Advertising at 415-884-3500.

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Mary Roach is the author of the bestselling books Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife, and Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex.  She lives in Oakland, California.