Thursday, December 18th, 2008 by

Not enough gets said about the good job many public libraries do in serving their communities with events programming. Alabama has quite a few that deserve recognition, many of which have hosted programs featuring NewSouth Books authors in the last few years. To name just a few who’ve partnered with us recently: the B.B. Comer Memorial Public Library in Sylacauga; the Ashland City Public Library; the Florence-Lauderdale Public Library; the Pell City Public Library; the Adelia McConnell Russell Library in Alex City; the Birmingham Public Library; the Selma-Dallas County Public Library; and the Mobile Public Library.

Our new favorite library is the Bradshaw Public Library in Valley, Alabama. Several NewSouth authors have enjoyed good audiences there as part of its “Lunch and Learn” series. On November 21, Peter Huggins spoke about his new young adult novel In the Company of Owls and talked about the process of creating a book. Adult Programs Coordinator John Tidwell said of Huggins’s presentation, “In the Company of Owls, a very exciting book for all family members, was excellent! We will probably ask you to schedule Peter for a return engagement.”

On December 4, former Alabama governor John Patterson and historian Warren Trest discussed Nobody But the People, a biography offering new insights and rich details into the life of this significant Southern politician. The crowd of almost a hundred people greatly enjoyed meeting Gov. Patterson and hearing his personal story. Mr. Tidwell observed, “The presentations by Governor Patterson and Warren Trest fascinated our Lunch and Learn group. So much so that they kept them answering questions twenty minutes after the program was scheduled to end! This was indeed a rarity! We were well-pleased.” This must be true, because a reprise program featuring Governor Patterson and Warren Trest is being planned for March or April of next year.

About his experiences, NewSouth author Warren Trest had this to say: “The Valley librarians were fantastic hosts — and top of the mark in every way.”  We couldn’t agree more.

The fruitful partnership between NewSouth and the Bradshaw Library will continue when Ted Dunagan speaks about his young adult novel A Yellow Watermelon on February 20, and when Rev. Robert Graetz discusses his memoir A White Preacher’s Message On Race and Reconciliation on February 27. These noontime programs will be highlights of the library’s Black History Month observation.

In the Company of Owls, Nobody But the People, A Yellow Watermelon, and A White Preacher’s Message on Race and Reconciliation are available directly from NewSouth Books, or your favorite local or online book retailer.