What’s happening at the Library: Conversation encouraged at CCPL

By John Maruskin

Clark County Public Library

Thanks to Rose Mary C. Brooks Place Director Tim Janes, for leading an excellent book discussion about Robert Penn Warren’s classic American novel “All the King’s Men,” here at the library. We had a spirited and enjoyable discussion with 14 people in attendance.

Tim is the kind of book group leader who invites his participants to think and then lets them do it.

“All the King’s Men” is a massive, challenging novel and it was satisfying and gratifying to see more than a dozen readers caught up in its complex narrative and its panoply of political, social, moral and ethical questions.

Tim will be leading another book discussion in October. He’s considering the selection and we’re working out the time and date. It will be another evening session. Stay tuned.

The library is the perfect place for group discussions. Over the past four years I’ve been continually enlightened and challenged by conversations during monthly Meeting of Minds meetings. When that group began three years ago, I really doubted it would work. Fifteen people showed up for the first meeting and since then, there have been 10 to 15 people at every monthly meeting.

The model for Meeting of Minds wasn’t formal philosophizing, it was and always has been comfortable and congenial conversation, focused or open, among friends, even when they agree to disagree. Meeting of Minds meets in the Rose Mary Codell Brooks Community Room because, as Thoreau said, you need a big room to let thoughts roam around, and we’ve tossed around some fabulously big ideas.

I am also continually delighted and enlightened by the conversations that occur during Book Lunch meetings. Members of Book Lunch are widely and wildly diverse in their political, social and religious outlooks, but their honesty, curiosity and humor have made us a bunch of friends who look forward to each other’s idiosyncrasies.

Part of every library’s mission is to educate and entertain the community. Here in Clark County, the community plays a pivotal role in accomplishing that mission. Thanks.

Programs this week?

— At 7 p.m. Tuesday, the Adult Summer Reading Program ends. We won’t accept raffle tickets for book baskets after 7 p.m. Drawings for the winners will take place Wednesday, Aug. 1. We will contact the winners by phone.

— At 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Meeting of Minds. Minds has spent the summer having general discussions. The conversation flows until a good topic surfaces and then we reel it in. Come in and join the conversation — coffee and cookies, too.

— At 2 p.m. Wednesday, Kentucky Picture Show presents a 2018 film about the inspiring and unknown true story behind MercyMe’s beloved, chart-topping song that has brought ultimate hope to so many. It is a gripping reminder of the power of true forgiveness. Rated PG.

— At 7 p.m. Wednesday, trivia night at the Engine House Pizza Pub. Alex Trebek has got nothing on Jeff Gurnee.

— At 10 a.m. Friday, Write Local meets. It’s local history month at the library. Bring your memoir to Write Local.

Speaking of Local History Month, you can get full details on this year’s programs on the library’s webpage at clarkbooks.org. You can register for the programs you would like to attend by using Evanced online registration, also on the homepage, by calling the library or — the best way — by registering at the circulation desk the next time you come in to fill up your new ASRP library bag with books.

John Maruskin is director of adult services at the Clark County Public Library. He can be reached at john.clarkbooks@gmail.com.