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Aug. 11, 2017

Author Saroo Brierley to kick off 2017 One Book, One Community program

Saroo Brierley, author of “A Long Way Home,” will kick off the 2017 One Book, One Community program with a special visit to the East Lansing community this month.

The annual OBOC program, sponsored by the City of East Lansing and Michigan State University, encourages the city-university community to read the same book and come together to discuss it in a variety of settings.

“A Long Way Home” is a No. 1 international bestseller based on the true story of Brierley’s journey from India to Australia and back again. After becoming lost from his family and home at the age of 5, Saroo struggled to survive on the notoriously rough streets of Calcutta before being adopted by a loving Australian couple. As he grows into adulthood, he feels he is a person of two worlds - one of which is lost to him. Brierley finds his way back to his childhood village and birth family as a young man using Google Earth maps and bits of fragmented memory.

Brierley’s story became a media sensation and led to his book, “A Long Way Home,” and the Oscar-nominated film, “Lion,” starring Dev Patel, Sunny Pawar, Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara.

There are two opportunities for community members to see Brierley during his visit to the East Lansing-MSU community. He will hold a community talk at 7 p.m. Aug. 27 at the East Lansing Hannah Community Center, 819 Abbot Road. Following Brierley’s remarks about his book and his real life experiences, there will be a question-and-answer session moderated by East Lansing Mayor Mark Meadows and a book signing.

Attendees will be seated on a first-come, first-served basis. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free.

The kickoff will also be streamed live, archived online and available via an on-demand playback at, courtesy of the MSU Alumni Association. The on-demand playback will require a password. Contact OBOC at for more information.

Brierley will also speak to the incoming class at the MSU Academic Welcome at 9 a.m. Aug. 28 at the Jack Breslin Student Events Center, 1 Birch Road. Admission is free and the public is welcome to attend.

Other OBOC events
In addition to the kick-off events, a number of additional events have been planned that tie into the theme of this year’s OBOC program: “Lost & Found: A Journey of Self Discovery.” Community members can find 2017 OBOC event details at

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