Volume XXX|August 2019
Your monthly news & updates
" Reading makes immigrants of us all. It takes us away from home, but more important, it finds homes for us everywhere.'
—Jean Rhys
News @ Lanier
Save the Date for Mystery Festival 2019!
Professor Purple in the library, with a Dagger
Friday, October 4, 5 - 9 PM
Mark your calendars for Friday, October 4 for the annual sell-out Lanier Library Mystery Festival, which pays homage this year to Clue, the murder-solving detective game introduced to the US in 1949. 

“The game has sold more than150 million sets since then,” said Amber Keeran, Library Director. “In each game there are from two to six players, and each one is a detective competing to solve the murder. Over 70 years, that’s a lot of amateur detectives! Well we know a thing or two about sleuthing here at Lanier and we are more than capable of taking our own murder solving game up a notch with a few twists. How the game will play out remains a mystery, but you can definitely count on mingling with some of the iconic characters from the game!” ( We are told Miss Amber has already assembled her purple ensemble.)  

“Some things you don’t fool around with though,” Keeran adds . “The Bloody Mary bar and the killer buffet remain the same, with perhaps a tweak to the desserts. But that’s a secret hospitality chair Pam Herres will keep a mystery until October 4th. Surprises are always fun.”

Also, as in the past, there will be a speaker you will not want to miss. This year it is forensic psychologist, professor and mystery author Rick Helms who will give us a peek into the criminal mind as well as the mind of the writer. A lifelong North Carolinian, Helms retired from active practice as a forensic psychologist in 2005, after working in the field for over two decades. At one time, he was the only court psychologist covering four counties in NC. A court-recognized expert in sex crimes and the psychology of sex offenders, mystery writing was an easy transition and a logical next step after Helms left his professional career to become a college professor in Charlotte. He retired from teaching in the summer of 2016 to become a full time writer and now counts 19 published novels to his name. He has been nominated five times for the Private Eye Writers of America Shamus Award and six times for the Short Mystery Fiction Society Derringer Award. He will open the Festival with a talk and Q & A at 5 pm.

All of this for $35 per person! Reservations are limited to 50 people and tickets sold out last year and the year before. So, don’t delay, you don’t want to miss this evening of mystery and fun…and lots of great food. And did we mention that the team that solves the murder first wins prizes?  Reservations will open on August 20 and can be made at the circulation desk with cash, check or credit card, or by calling the library at 828-859-9535. 

Come with an appetite and thinking caps, and perhaps a costume, and join the fun Friday night, October 4th… in the library… with a dagger…!  

To brush up on all things Clue, here is a link to 10 Facts About Clue for the 70th Anniversary copied from Mental Floss website.   10 Facts About Clue

Forensic psychologist and mystery author Rick Helms will be the keynote speaker for the 2019 Lanier Library Mystery Festival.
Lanier Library in the early days
Tryon Sesquicentennial Celebration
The Town of Tryon will celebrate 150 years (to the day) Labor Day weekend this year, and will host a celebration not to be missed! After all, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

As the oldest civic organization in town, the library has had a long and illustrious impact on Tryon. We will be there with photos and stories as well as membership forms!

Please plan to attend Tryon's Sesquicentennial Celebration August 30-Sept 1 in downtown Tryon and stop by the Lanier Library booth to learn all about the history of the library! 

On November 23rd, the Lanier Library will hold the next in its series of events with Tryon-resident and New York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe. The first event in the “Conversations With Mary Alice Monroe and Friends” series will feature Cassandra King Conroy. Cassandra and Mary Alice will talk about Cassandra’s latest book, Tell Me A Story, a memoir about her life with Pat Conroy, a favorite author of many Lanier Library members. Details of the event are still being finalized, but the projected time is 4:00 to 6:00 pm on Saturday, November 23rd.
Support @ Lanier
130 by 130
Encouraging new members for our 130th Anniversary in 2020

Founded in 1890, Lanier Library is one of 16 membership libraries established since 1747 still operating in the United States. But perhaps more to its credit is its history as a center of community life in Tryon. Lanier Library offers a wealth of up-to-date materials and a full schedule of programs for both adults and children. It is a welcoming place to form new friendships and to share the love of books. Being a member of Lanier Library gives you a place in the library’s storied legacy.

Since its founding, the library has been sustained through membership dues, memorials, gifts and endowments, the majority unsolicited. This generosity reflects the love and affection people have for this unique institution and the special role it plays in our community, and every membership, every charitable contribution is deeply appreciated.

In August 2018, we launched the 130 by 130 campaign to encourage 130 NEW memberships by our 130th Anniversary in 2020. By August 2019, we have welcomed 90 new members! 

Members, you are the best recruiters of new members. By sharing your experiences at the library you offer others the opportunity to be part of something special. Tell them about our friendly and helpful staff, the cozy reading room, the many clubs--Book Lovers, Nonfiction Book Club, NeedleArts Club--and the monthly programs with award-winning authors, nature experts, musicians and artists. New programs include our Felburn Nature & Wildlife Series and Conversations with Mary Alice Monroe, the NY Times Bestselling author, bringing some of her author friends to celebrate the Lanier Library. In the spring, our Annual Program hosts a literary event of interest to all. In the fall, there is the sell-out Lanier Library Mystery Festival. And, don't miss our festive Members' Holiday Party in early January. 

Fall in love with this historic gem. Invite your family and friends to join!
Books @ Lanier
Here are the links to our lists of newest acquisitions and orders. Feel free to contact the library to put your name on the hold list for these books. You can call us, come in person, or log in through the catalogue on the website using your library card number. And, as always, let us know if there is a book or DVD you think would enhance the collection.

Check out our latest book display offering a sampling of Books You Should Read in Your Lifetime! And think about contributing to our ongoing "Members' Favorites" display scattered throughout the shelves. Give us a few sentences about a book you would like to share with others to become part of the "Favorites" team.
The Overstory
Richard Powers

Find a Tree-Hugger to Hug Today

The easy answer to “What is this novel about?” is “Trees.” The story about the writing of The Overstory is that when Richard Powers, the author, was teaching at Stanford University, he saw for the first time some of the giant Redwood trees and was inspired to create this novel, his twelfth. It has been well-received: it was awarded the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize in 2018. 

Trees serve as a metaphor to present his characters’ lives. The novel is divided into four parts, each section representing an element of the tree. For example, in Part 1, “Roots,” each chapter is devoted to the backstory of his nine characters, the roots of their lives. In parts 2, 3, and 4, the trunk, the leaves, and the seeds, Powers writes about how his characters’ lives intersect, how they become intertwined with each other, and how their decisions, driven by their devotion to trees and nature, lead to their destruction or their salvation. 

The novel is a treatise on the importance of trees, the history of trees in America, and the possibility that trees communicate with each other to protect their own and may even try to communicate with us. The idea that trees have hidden lives, that they share secrets, is not new. Lanier Library has nonfiction books about that very notion. 

Powers is also making a statement about how big business does not necessarily embrace any of these theories. His characters are in conflict with those in the timber industry, with developers, with anyone who thinks a tree is just a tree – those for whom cash is king. Think about our own history in Polk County. We live in a beautiful, tree-filled county. But if you remember the debacle of Chocolate Drop, then you know how easily bulldozers run rampant over common sense. You may even know of other areas where a lot of earth has been moved – trees destroyed in the process -- in the name of progress.

The Overstory is about imprisonment. Some of the characters go to jail for their actions; some are trapped in tragic life situations; in some cases, their bodies serve as prisons -- one of the characters is deaf, one has an accident as a child and becomes a quadriplegic, one has a stroke. Is the novel a statement about how trees have spirits that are stuck inside them? You decide.

But if you have ever been tempted to hug a tree, this novel is for you. 

Review by Gloria Underwood, PhD
Clubs @ Lanier
Book Lovers Club

The next meeting of Book Lovers is on Saturday, August 3 at 10 am in the Holmes Room . The meeting is open to all, the only requirements: a love of reading, discussing what you read and discovering new books!

We thank Dr. Gloria Underwood, a regular Book Lovers attendee and chair of this year's Lanier Library Mystery Festival, for reviewing a book she found compelling this month.

Here is the link to the books recommended by group members at the last meeting:

NeedleArts @ Lanier
Saturday, August 10, 10 am
Spend a relaxing morning with like-minded thread artists. Whether you have taken a class at the Royal School of Needlework or are just beginning a new hobby bring any knitting, needlepoint, cross stitch or embroidery project and enjoy the company of and learn from others for a few hours the second Saturday of each month. It is also a great place to resurrect those projects long-ago abandoned!

The group was pleased to welcome Chloe Mannell from Richmond. VA, granddaughter of Inglis Selick, who, at age eight, showed up everyone by drawing her own picture and translating it to needlepoint.
Nonfiction Book Club
Nonfiction Book Club
Sunday, July 14, 1:30 pm
The August book choice is Driving Miss Norma: One Family’s Journey Saying “Yes” to Living by Tim Bauerschmidt and Ramie Liddle and September's book will be Just Mercy by Bryan Stephenson.

The Nonfiction Book Club meets upstairs in the Holmes Room.
Tryon Lacemakers
Saturday, August 24
9:30 am - 1 PM
If you have never seen lacemaking, you are in for a fascinating time when you stop by the Tryon Lacemakers, who meet at the library the fourth Saturday of the month. They are more than happy to demonstrate the intricacies of this beautiful art for visitors.
Programs @ Lanier
Don't miss tonight's program with Annette Alfonso, professional agility trainer in our area, talking about her profession and love of dogs, which led to her position as Assistant Coach for the AKC European Open Team USA in The Netherlands. Though they won’t be performing due to space constraints, she will have a few canine friends with her.
Head to the library on Tuesday, August 20 at noon for Animals of Appalachia, Chimney Rock State Park’s most popular program and a favorite for all ages. Get personal with some of their resident animal ambassadors while learning about the wildlife that roams our region! Participants will learn about habits, adaptations and animal characteristics during this informative and fun session.
Last Month's Events
Miniaturizing the the Saluda Grade RR
Larry Morton of the Apple Valley Model Railroad Club described how he brought the Saluda Grade railroad down to size for the Saluda Depot display. Saluda Depot Board members Mary Meyland-Mason and Carolyn Ashburn joined Larry at the library for the presentation.
ComMotion-Community in Motion
An energized and happy group of folks spent an hour getting their groove back with instructor Andre Avila of the fabulous ComMotion.
Pets @ Lanier
Lanier Greeter Dog Nick with new friend Molly, who came in with library member David Maxwell.
Lanier Greeter Dog Nick with library member Ellie Baughman, who came in with her mom, dad, brother and sister to choose some books to read on a hot summer afternoon. Petting our Greeter Dog and getting a piece of chocolate adds magic to the Lanier Library experience!

Rick Mehta brought Rusty to the library this month and we understand it was so exciting Rusty is begging for another visit.
We welcome well-behaved dogs, and while the staff all love dogs, not everyone who comes into the library does, so we appreciate all pets being on a leash.
Displays @ Lanier
Antique Chess Collection
We are excited this month to have on display a portion of Eileen Ball Mehta's collection of antique chess sets. Among those she will be sharing with us are:

Ramayana chess set: The Ramayana is one of two ancient Indian epics. It was written in Sanskrit, perhaps in the 5th century BC. This is a very old set purchased in Jaipur, India. 

Don Quixote chess set: Written by Cervantes, of course, in the early 1600s. This set was purchased in Toledo, Spain. 

Wizard of Oz chess set: Written by L. Frank Baum in 1900. This set was manufactured by an American company, Star Jars, in 1995. 

Whether you are a chess whiz or simply an admirer of objects d'art this will be an enchanting exhibit to visit!
July Display
Thanks to Eilene Morgan and Harriet Peoples for sharing their fun collection of antique toys, toys that they sheepishly admitted to playing with as children. We have to say that there were more than a few that brought back fun memories.
Odds & Ends
Dads @ Lanier
Searching for R. L. Stine in the card catalogue. David Savkovic helps son, Daniel find an author the old fashioned way.
Mike Baughman listens to a story told by daughter, Luna.
Lanier Library | 828-859-9535| thelanierlibrary@gmail.com