Over the past year--November 2014 and October 2015--year, Karen Shoemaker has visited Peru State College twice to read from and discuss her moving and invigorating novel, The Meaning of Names, a book that has garnered considerable attention inside Nebraska and beyond.
As a critique that appeared in World Literature Today notes, "With her timely first novel, The Meaning of Names, Karen Gettert Shoemaker presents us with two unique main conflicts: the great flu epidemic and the racism encountered by German Americans living in Nebraska during World War I, a rarely seen perspective."
The novel is also a finalist for One Book Nebraska, 2016: "Launched each January, this dynamic program cultivates a culture of reading and discussion in our state by bringing our diverse state together around one great book by a Nebraska author." I wish Karen, a friend for over twenty years, good fortune and hope that she receives this wonderful honor.
Yesterday, October 15, Karen read from The Meaning of Names, a novel Dan Holtz's students read in his College 100 class. Many attended the reading and asked excellent questions. I uploaded some photographs from the event.
Unfortunately, my handy camera work failed to record Karen's reading from her novel; however, the following video shares some of the excellent discussion that followed her sharing an important chapter from the book:
And last November, Karen visited Sara Crook's College 100 class, and as the photographs from this reading and the other visit indicate, both attracted an enthusiastic groups of people.
Fortunately, when Karen read from the novel last year, from a different chapter, the video captured the moments you can enjoy again or for the first time.