Batavia Public Library

One Book, One Batavia 2021

One Book, One Batavia is an annual community-wide reading program presented by the Batavia Public Library
in cooperation with Batavia High School and co-sponsored by the Friends of the Batavia Public Library.

Previous Selections

About the book:

Read the engaging true story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, a genius codebreaker who began her career right in our backyard. In her first codebreaking job, she worked for Colonel Fabyan at Riverbank (in the current-day Fabyan Forest Preserve)—and then went on to break codes during WWII, including cracking the Enigma code multiple times. In this compelling biography, Jason Fagone shines a light on a woman whose work has been overlooked by history—in part due to the top-secret nature of her codebreaking, but also due to decisions made by J. Edgar Hoover and others to try to diminish the work of a woman codebreaker. A fascinating look at the life of a remarkable woman who—for a time—lived very near Batavia.



Programs

Book Discussion

Tuesday, February 9
7 pm   
Online – via Zoom
Register at https://tinyurl.com/smashedcodes

Adult Services manager Stacey Peterson facilitates this book discussion of the book The Woman Who Smashed Codes by Jason Fagone. Participants are asked to read the book prior to the discussion.

Virtual Tour of Fabyan Villa

Wednesday, February 17
7 pm
Online – via Zoom
Register at https://tinyurl.com/FabyanVilla

Let Vivien Lasken, Director of the Fabyan Villa, take you on a virtual tour of the Fabyan Villa where Elizebeth Friedman did her first codebreaking and met her husband, William. 

Author Spotlight: Jason Fagone

Wednesday, March 3
7 pm

Online – via Zoom
Register at https://tinyurl.com/JasonFagone

Join us online for an hour with Jason Fagone, author of The Woman Who Smashed Codes, this year’s One Book, One Batavia selection

Peaches and Baseball

Tuesday, March 16
7 pm

Online – via Zoom
Register at https://tinyurl.com/PeachesBaseball

Celebrate women “stepping up to the plate” during World War II!  Rebecca Tulloch, a vintage Rockford Peach, shares the story of the real-life Rockford Peaches and the film that was inspired by them, A League of Their Own

The History of Women in Computer Science 

Wednesday, March 24
7 pm 
Online – via Zoom

Register at https://tinyurl.com/WomenComputerScience

Christine Szorc, an adjunct instructor at Elgin Community College, has been in the IT industry for over 25 years.  Who better to talk about the history of women in computer science? 

About the Author

This year, for One Book One Batavia, The Woman Who Smashed Codes: A True Story of Love, Spies, and the Unlikely Heroine Who Outwitted America’s Enemies by Jason Fagone

Jason Fagone is an investigative reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle. Previously, he was a contributing editor for the Huffington Post Highline, where he covered technology, sports, and culture. He’s also written for The New York Times Magazine, WiredGQ, Washingtonian, and NewYorker.com. He is the author of the books Horsemen of the Esophagus: Competitive Eating and the Big Fat American Dream and Ingenious: A True Story of Invention, Automotive Daring, and the Race to Revive America. The Woman Who Smashed Codes is his third book.