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MCPL to host Kentucky Reads book discussion program June 18

Muhlenberg County Public Libraries, together with Kentucky Humanities, will host a Kentucky Reads book discussion of Scissors, Paper, Rock by Fenton Johnson at Thistle Cottage on June 18 at 6 p.m.
Constance Alexander, a writer, professor and scholar from Murray, Ky., will lead this discussion of the novel.
Kentucky Humanities has selected Fenton Johnson’s Scissors, Paper, Rock for its 2024 Kentucky Reads title. The novel will be the focus of statewide conversations on the complexities of human relationships, identity and the search for self-discovery.
Fenton Johnson is the well-known author of three novels and four works of creative nonfiction, most recently At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life, a New York Times Editors’ Pick. At various times a contributor to National Public Radio, Harper’s Magazine, and the New York Times Magazine, he has received numerous literary awards. He has taught in the nation’s leading creative writing programs and is Emeritus Professor of the University of Arizona. He continues to lecture and teach nationally.
Scissors, Paper, Rock centers around the strained relationship of Kentucky-born Raphael Hardin and his father. Raphael and his siblings all left their rural home when they became adults, but after the death of his mother, Raphael has returned to visit his ailing father. Their attempts at reconciliation are complicated by not only their past but also the fact that both men are ill — Raphael with AIDS, his father with cancer. The novel follows the men in their struggle to repair their relationship before time runs out.
The June 18 book discussion program will take the place of June’s Thistle Cottage Book Club meeting, but attendance is not limited to regular book club members. All are invited to attend this free program.
Thistle Cottage has a very limited supply of free books available to those wishing to read the novel and attend the June 18 discussion. Call Thistle Cottage at 270-338-4760 to reserve a copy. This program was funded in part by Kentucky Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities in cooperation with Muhlenberg County Public Libraries. Kentucky Humanities is a non-profit Kentucky corporation affiliated with the National Endowment for the Humanities. For information about Kentucky Humanities’ programs and services, including Kentucky Reads, visit

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