Program to explore writing style of ‘The Ruins of Us’

erik.hillskemperWWU faculty and staff conducted a number of activities during September in conjunction with the Daniel Boone Regional Library’s One Read program. This year’s book, chosen by a public vote, was “The Ruins of Us,” a novel by Keija Parrsinen. A timely story of intolerance, family, and injustices, set in Saudi Arabia, “The Ruins of Us” proves to be a new voice in contemporary fiction.

One Read, now in its 12th year, is a community-wide reading program that encourages adults of all ages to read one book and participate in thought-provoking discussion and activities.

Here’s a look back at just some of the programs offered by William Woods University.authors-talk-for-web

Sept. 16— Third Culture Kids
Keija Parssinen, author of “The Ruins of Us,” talked about American children raised abroad—what they are, what they are like and how they influenced the novel. Dr. Matt Dube, assistant professor of English, led the discussion.

art-projectSept. 21—Mosaic Magic, Farmer’s Market, 5th St. between Market & Court.
This year’s One Read selection was set in Saudi Arabia, so we explored all aspects of Middle Eastern culture. Children made a colorful, cut-paper mosaic to take home, with help from members of T.A.G. (William Woods’ Thriving Artist Group) in collaboration with the Mildred Cox Gallery’s Kemper Kid.

Sept. 25— Half Truths, Insane Ideas, Gas Masks and Scud Missiles
Dr. Steve Huenneke, assistant professor of economics, reflected upon the economic and cultural background at the root of conflicts in the Middle East. This was a multi-media time capsule presentation of life in middle America during the first Gulf War in 1990-1991, inspired by five different passages in “The Ruins of Us.”

WWU-One-Read-art-exhibit-13_for_webSept. 26— One Read Art Reception, Kemper Art Center Corridor Gallery. WWU students completed reflections of the artwork they viewed that was created by students of Jane Mudd and Terry Martin in conjunction with the One Read art exhibit theme, Home.

Sept. 26— One Read Author’s Visit
One Read author Keija Parssinen steped up to the podium to talk about growing up in Saudi Arabia and how it inspired her to write her debut novel, “The Ruins of Us.” She also spoke about writing as a craft, answered questions and signed copies of her book.