Pittman named director of Champaign library

CHAMPAIGN - The Champaign Public Library Board removed the "interim" tag from Director Donna Pittman's title on Friday morning, appointing her to permanently lead the four-star library.

What's in a name? Clara Lane

Today, the Champaign Public Library is expected to name a new director. When that director is selected, chances are she will drive or walk on Clara Lane, the road outside the library's main doors.

When the new library was built and opened in 2008, it received $3 million in donations. One single gift came from an anonymous donor in the amount of $1 million.

Ted Kooser: An American Life in Poetry, July 24, 2016

By Ted Kooser/U.S. Poet Laureate, 2004-06

Dorianne Laux, who lives in North Carolina, is one of our country's most distinguished poets, and here's a poignant poem about a family resemblance. It's from her book "Smoke," from BOA Editions.

Ray at 14

Bless this boy, born with the strong face

of my older brother, the one I loved most,

Library events, July 24-31, 2016

Selected upcoming events at local libraries

Champaign Public Library

Main library, 200 W. Green St.

Douglass Branch, 504 E. Grove St.

C-U haiku, July 24, 2016

By Jim O’Brien, Ann Hart and Will Reger


The mind weaves patterns

wind on leaves in bright moonlight

seeing you everywhere

— Steve LaVigne, Columbia, Mo.

Susan McKinney: Alternative history worth checking out

Simone Zelitch has written an alternate history novel that uses an actual book as the basis for that alternative.

In 1896, Theodor Herzl wrote "Der Judenstaat." In this book, he proposed an answer to the "Jewish Question" of a Jewish state.

That's entertainment: Spotlighting events in the area

Literary scene

Author will visit Champaign library

New York Times bestselling author J. Ryan Stradal will read from his latest, award-winning novel, "Kitchens of the Great Midwest," at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Champaign Public Library.

He also will talk about his writing processes and how libraries influenced him.

Kelly Strom: Suspense abounds

Why do people enjoy reading suspense? Well, the journal Psychology Today reports "Most of what we regard as entertaining is suspenseful. Turn on your television and you will see contests (which man will she choose? Who will lose the most weight?), sporting events, murder mysteries, all sorts of different ways of generating suspense.

Ruth Siburt: Once again, author delivers a great story

Some authors gladden book reviewers' hearts simply by continuing to write. When their books appear in our mailboxes or on our library's shelves, we say to ourselves: "Oh good! Here's another wonderful story for readers to love."

Kate DiCamillo does that for me, and her latest novel for middle grades, "Raymie Nightingale," reinforces my faith in her unique story weaving ability.