A month of reading together in Quincy

The Things They Carried

I f you like to read, then the latest offering from the Quincy Public Library may just catch your attention.

It's the fifth time the library has been selected to be part of the national "The Big Read" event.

And this year, the book selected by the library is "The Things They Carried," written by Tim O'Brien.

The National Endowment For The Arts allocates grant money to help cover the costs associated with the community wide event.

"It's to get the community involved. Talking together, reading, but discussing what they talk about and thinking about history and what goes on in people's minds and in their lives. We will its just a good event to bring the residents of Quincy together," Nancy Dolan, Quincy Public Library Executive Director, said.

The kick-off for the month long event was held at the Illinois Veteran's Home.

The book is about a platoon of soldiers in the Vietnam War and the author goes to great length to describe some of the things the soldiers have carried into battle with them. Everything from love letters, to memories, guilt and even loyalty.

For Dennis Hildebrand, he served in Vietnam with the old Illinois National Guard's 126th Supply Unit based in Quincy. And he was already reading the first few pages of the book when I caught up with him.

"I love the book so far of what I've read and I've read all the accolades in the beginning and I think it's going to be a very interesting book. And I love to read. So far it brings back a lot of old memories some of them good some of them bad," Hildebrand said.

The program lasts for the entire month of October and into November.

Some of the Big Read activities include group discussions, movies associated with the Vietnam War and a locally produced play.

For details on all the events, you can log onto the Quincy Public Library's website, which is