Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

October 24, 2011

There’s time; get involved

The Kokomo-Howard County Public Library and Greentown Public Library are encouraging county residents to check out a copy of this year’s Howard County Reads selection, “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” – Jamie Ford’s novel about the relationship of a Chinese boy and Japanese girl during World War II, when America’s Japanese were sent to internment camps.

Events associated with the program get under way next week. There still is time to get Ford’s book, participate in this community-building endeavor and meet the author.

Howard County Reads was introduced in 2004. Its goal: To cultivate a love of reading and to promote a sense of community.

Planners have taken community-building a step farther this year. Both libraries partnered with the Women’s Symposium, the Elizabeth Handley Estate and Indiana University Kokomo to offer residents corresponding events in which to participate:

• Local jazz musician Monty Sanders and his band will perform Nov. 4. The concert, “Jazz Do It”, is from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Elite Conference and Banquet Center, at the corner of Lincoln Road and LaFountain St. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10, which include hors d’oeuvres.

• Learn the basics of origami, the Japanese art of folding paper into shapes and figures, Nov. 7. The class will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the downtown branch of the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library. Call 765-457-3242 to reserve a spot. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

• And get tickets to meet the author of “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” Dec. 1. Jamie Ford will speak and sign autographs at 7 p.m. at IU Kokomo’s Havens Auditorium. The event is free, but residents can pick up a ticket for a guaranteed seat at any library.

Get involved in this community activity; it’s the most important part of Howard County Reads. You can join one of the program’s book discussion groups – the first is 6 p.m. Nov. 2 at the South Branch library, 1755 E. Center Road – or form your own among friends and co-workers. Howard County Reads even will provide your group a discussion leader.

If you want to host a book discussion, let organizers know by calling 765-454-4710 or emailing read@howardcountyreads.org.

Call Trisha Shively at 765-457-3242 or the Greentown Public Library at 765-628-3534 if you have questions.

This looks to be the best year yet for Howard County Reads.

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