Maybe this is just stemming from a misplaced nostalgia for our fourth grade class, where everyone was required to buy the exact same edition of The Black Cauldron by Lloyd Alexander, but we find something very appealing about the idea of the Library of Congress's One City One Book program.

The One City One Book program is a city-wide reading group program, where city librarians select a book and suggest that everyone in the city read it. To select random locations within the Gothamist family alone: New York read Chang Rae-Lee's Native Speaker in 2002. Chicago is reading The Ox-Bow Incident. DC read Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years. And Seattle kicked this entire trend off in 1998 by recommending Russell Banks's The Sweet Hereafter.

So San Francisco's librarians have picked local author Gus Lee's novel, China Boy, about an immigrant boy's harrowing experiences growing up in the Tenderloin in the 1950s. So pick it up -- and nod knowingly at the person sitting across from you on the MUNI reading the exact same book.