Library aide Sandra Aiken

Grangeville Centennial Library aide Sandra Aiken displays the books for the 2019 “Let’s Talk About It” series.

GRANGEVILLE — Chase those winter blues away by grabbing a book and discussing it with a group of peers.

Grangeville Centennial Library was again chosen to be a partner in the Let’s Talk About It program. The public discussion group will meet through April. All meetings are set for Tuesdays, 5:30 p.m., at The Gallery, 107 West North Street. Books are currently available for pickup at the library, 215 West North Street, Grangeville, and the first session is set for Jan. 15. Call 208-983-0951.

“Our theme this year is ‘Connecting Generations,’” said assistant librarian, Heidi Brown.

“This includes a lot of young adult literature,” said library aide, Sandra Aiken.

“A lot of these books we have read in junior high, but what different perspectives will we have now, reading them as adults?” Brown questioned.

Readers will focus on difficult questions and themes and, with the help of a specific scholar for each book, will discuss that book in a group setting at The Gallery.

Meeting dates, books and scholars for 2019 include the following:

•Jan. 15: The Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson (1977)

This exploration of friendship and death introduces readers to the characters of Jess and Leslie, who form a close friendship. To escape the humdrum reality of their own lives they create their own fantasy kingdom. Their secret place is reached by a rope swing over a creek. This swing becomes the bridge to a magical world.

“I have spent a good part of my life trying to construct bridges,” author Paterson said when she accepted a Newberry Medal for the book. “There were many chasms I saw that needed bridging – chasms of time and culture and disparate human nature.”

•Feb. 5: The Lord of the Flies by William Golding (1954)

The book explores a group of British boys stuck on a deserted island who try to govern themselves with disastrous results. Subjects include human nature and individual welfare versus the common good.

The book landed as number 68 on the American Library Association’s list of the 100 most frequently challenged books 1990-1999. In 2005, it was chosen by Time Magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923-2005.

•Feb. 26: When We Were Romans by Matthew Kneale (2009)

Lawrence and his little sister, Jemima, find themselves uprooted and off to a new life in Rome with their mother, who has decided they must leave England. Life becomes a catalogue of sofa-surfing homelessness and uncertainty for the family, with all the hopes and anxieties of the children acted out in a city dominated by history.

The book evokes the emotions and confusions of childhood including the triumphs, jealousies, fears and love.

•March 12: The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd (2002)

The book is set in the American South in 1964, the year of the Civil Rights Act. This coming-of-age story addresses the wounds of loss, betrayal and the scarcity of love. This is a critically acclaimed book that became a New York Times bestseller. It was nominated for the Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction and was adapted into a 2008 film.

•March 26: The Enders Hotel by Brandon R. Schrand (2008)

The center of this memoir takes place in Soda Springs, Idaho, and the historic Enders Hotel, Café and Bar, a three-story brick building.

Growing up under its leaking roof, Brandon R. Schrand watched a cast of broken characters pass through the hotel doors—an alcoholic artist, a forgotten boxing champ, an ex-con, a homeless family—and tried to find his own identity among those revolving faces. Haunted by a father he had never seen, he tested the faces of those drifters for familiarity. Winner of the River Teeth Literary Nonfiction Prize, The Enders Hotel reveals the promises and warnings of western boomtown life—stories of alcoholism, murder, betrayal, hope, and finally, redemption.

Since 1985, Let’s Talk About It has been bringing adult reading discussion groups together with humanities scholars in Idaho’s public libraries to discuss fine literature. These book readings and discussions explore American values, history, culture, aging, classics and more.

“We invite everyone to take part in reading and then discussing these books,” said Aiken.

Each year, several libraries statewide are selected to participate and are provided book copies and theme and book materials for use in the program. Each library will also provide a $100 match. Funds are sometimes used through the regular budget, Friends of the Library or other grants.

The Let’s Talk About It program is made possible by the Idaho Humanities Council; the National Endowment for the Humanities USBancorp Foundation; and a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, which administers the Library Services and Technology Act. The program is administered by the Idaho Commission for Libraries.

Stop by the library between now and the first reading session to sign up and pick up the first book.


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