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library book discussion
July 16, 2015 : OUL Book Discussion Group Prepares for Second Meeting


Lancaster – The first meeting of the OUL book discussion group earlier this month generated great conversation about the 2011 Man Booker Prize winner, The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.  In June, faculty, staff, students and Friends of the Library members were invited by Hannah V. McCauley Library Director Judy Carey Nevin to read a book together this summer.
“We had a great turnout for our first discussion of The Sense of an Ending,” said Nevin. “We had six faculty members, one Friend of the Library, one staff member, and one administrative staff member in our group. What a great combination for an engaging conversation!”
According to a description from Amazon, “The novel follows Tony Webster, a middle-aged man, as he contends with a past he never thought much about—until his closest childhood friends return with a vengeance: one of them from the grave, another maddeningly present. Tony thought he left this all behind as he built a life for himself, and his career has provided him with a secure retirement and an amicable relationship with his ex-wife and daughter, who now has a family of her own. But when he is presented with a mysterious legacy, he is forced to revise his estimation of his own nature and place in the world.”
"As a literature professor, I enjoy hearing the perspectives of my colleagues from other disciplinary backgrounds,” said Associate Professor of English Matt Wanat. “We can learn a lot from these sorts of interdisciplinary conversations, and I'm hopeful that we can extend this sharing of diverse points of view to the student body. Our students, like our colleagues, bring to bear diverse perspectives when thinking about good books."
“I never would have read this book if it weren't for the book club,” said Associate Professor of Physics Sandy Doty. “Even after reading the book, I doubt I would have thought as deeply about it had it not been for the diverse perspectives shared in our discussion.  There's just something about sharing a book that brings people together and opens them up to new ideas.”
“I came away from the discussion with several new insights that never would have occurred to me on my own,” said Associate Professor of Computer Science Technology Christine Wolfe. “After the meeting, I went back and re-read several sections with my new understanding.  I believe our students would bring even more dimensions to the discussion.   It will also help to hone their skills in academic discourse.”
“We intend to continue the book discussion group format into the fall semester, with a few professors offering titles of interest to them,” said Carey Nevin. “Our ultimate goal is to encourage a culture of reading across disciplines, hopefully with a common book read in multiple classes.”
The next book discussion group meeting for The Sense of an Ending is set for August 6 at noon in the lower level of the library. 
“If you haven’t had a chance to read the book yet, there’s plenty of time between now and August 6,” said Carey Nevin. “The book is 150 pages and it goes very quickly.”
If you are interested in participating contact Carey Nevin at