War, Not War, and Peace

Let’s Talk About It, Oklahoma (LTAIO)

Let’s Talk About It, Oklahoma is a great way to connect with neighbors over books and ideas.  It is a reading and discussion series which consists of 4-5 sessions, each featuring a book from the chosen discussion theme. A humanities scholar opens each session telling about the author’s life, giving historical context to the book, sharing its contemporary relevance, and explaining how the book ties into the overarching theme. Participants then discuss their own thoughts about the book.

Starting in January, we are offering the series “War, Not War, and Peace:  A Pulitzer Prize Centennial Series.”  Too often, ‘peace’ is simply the absence of active war.  Ours is a country–and culture–forged in a crucible of war and conquest.  What defines much of our national character is aggression, both its light and dark sides.  The books in this series present Pulitzer winners detailing both the active elements of war as well as the long-lived legacies of war, in thos periods optimistically called peace.

Sign up at the front desk and get a copy of the first book. Each monthly discussion will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the upstairs meeting room.

If you are not able to participate in the discussions but are interested in reading the books, we will be happy to order them for you through interlibrary loan.  Ask at the front desk for more information.

The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien
Monday, January 7
The least disguised, least ornamented of narratives–war at its traditional ‘purest,’ combat, death, grief and the explicit declaration that “a true war story is never about war. It’s about sunlight… It’s about love and memory. It’s about worry.”

Empire of the Summer Moon by S. C. Gwynne
Monday, February 4
An historical biography that provides deeply textured background to a series of hellish conflicts: the Indian Wars of the 19th century.

Maus by Art Spiegelman
Monday, March 4
Two volumes of a complex narrative examining the effects of “not-war” even unto the next generation told in graphic novel format.

Neon Venacular by Yusef Komunyakaa
Monday, April 1

This book presents the Vietnam war forged in the fires of a combat veteran’s experience, hammered on the anvil of poetry, and made beautiful by polishing.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Monday, May 6

Doerr shows of victims of war who are not combatants–the French family of blind Marie-Laure–and of Werner, a boy blinded by his almost innocent morality.




  1. Do any of the books used in this series come in a form for visually impaired?

    • Three of the books in this series are available at our library as audio books. Two are available as books on CD, and one is available as a downloadable audio. If you would like to sign up for this series, two of the books are available in large print. Although we don’t have them at our library, it is possible for us to order them through interlibrary loan. We would be happy to do this for you!

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