BLACKFOOT– The Blackfoot Public Library will be doing the "Let's Talk About It Program" which is funded by a grant from the Idaho Commission for Libraries, Idaho Humanities Council and support from U.S. Bank. Each year libraries across the state can apply for the grant and fifteen libraries are chosen for the program. During the application program the libraries choose out of the fifteen themes which they would prefer, then are given a list of books which is narrowed down to five books to cover during the program.
Eileen Huestis is spearheading the program at the library and has chosen the theme "Tough Paradise." This theme and books are particularly important to the area because it highlights the literature of Idaho and the Intermountain West. This theme was created in 1995 by Susan Swetnam, an English professor at Idaho State University. When it was created Swetnam stated, "the books in this theme highlight the variety of ways that humans may respond to the challenging landscape of Idaho and the northern Intermountain West."
The program will begin officially on January 9 at 6:00 P.M. at the library. They are currently taking sign ups for the program at the Blackfoot Public Library, or one can call 208-785-8628 to be placed on the list. Once the books are in-house, the patrons who are going to be a part of the program will get a phone call to pick them up.
The first book that will be read is "Buffalo Coat" by Carol Ryrie Brink. This novel details the events in Moscow, Idaho around the turn of the century. The conflicts within the community about women who want to sustain the family, rival doctors, and the proposed additions to the area to help rid it of typhoid. This novel is considered historical fiction and adapts the history of families in Moscow during the time period. It instructs, entertains, as well as enlightens the readers.
Huestis spoke about this program, "I was in this program a while back and the books we read, I would never have picked up. A lot of people's initial reactions to novels like this are usually defensive. However, taking part in programs like this helps change minds. I am excited to spearhead this." The speakers who will lead discussion and history within the novels are scholars from the area. People are welcome to come to one night or all nights and participate in the discussion. There will be treats provided by Friends of the Blackfoot Public Library. This program is a great way for adults to delve into genres they may not have experienced before.