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Posts Tagged ‘All Iowa Reads’

“Fiction Reveals Truths that Reality Obscures,” Jessamyn West

by Susan Craig on June 16th, 2014

Attending the recent program featuring Thomas Maltman, author of this year’s All Iowa Reads book Little Wolves, I was reminded once again of the power of story. Mr. Maltman spoke very eloquently about how fiction writing brings people closer together through a shared experience. He believes that books and stories build empathy, something the world needs more of.all iowa reads

I am on the committee that selects the All Iowa Reads book every year, and our number one criteria is that we have a good story that Iowans can talk about. Maltman’s talk reinforced to me that our instinct to choose good stories above all else is the right one. These stories give us an opportunity to talk about emotional truths that are universal to the human experience.

Many of the titles we have chosen for AIR over the years are what some people describe as “dark.” I can’t disagree, but they also seemed like the most discussable. Maltman helped me understand why that is true. He said that we need good monster stories to know who we are, to ask the question, “Where does the darkness come from and how do we fight it?” He shared a story about his two oldest daughters writing a story one summer and they would work on the plot and then go act it out in the back yard. Of course, he explained, he and his wife were killed off in the first chapter. Once they were “orphaned,” they could be the heroes of their own story.

It was great program. If you missed it, watch for the replay on the Library Channel (Mediacom Channel 10). Other books recommended by Maltman include:

Hope you can read a lot of stories this summer!

All Iowa Reads 2014: An Evening with “Little Wolves” Author Thomas Maltman

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 4th, 2014

Thomas Maltman, the author of the 2014 All Iowa Reads Book, Little Wolves, will be at the Iowa City Public Library for a special event at 7 p.m. on Monday, June 9, in Meeting Room A.little wolves

“We’re excited to have the opportunity to welcome Thomas Maltman to the Iowa City Public Library for this one-night only event,” Adult Programming Librarian Beth Fisher says. “The purpose of All Iowa Reads is for foster a sense of community and unity through reading. What better ways to do that than have this year’s author come and talk about his book?”

Set on the Minnesota prairie in the late 1980s during a drought season that’s pushing family farms to the brink, Little Wolves features the intertwining stories of a father searching for answers after his son commits a heinous murder, and a pastor’s wife who has returned to the town for mysterious reasons of her own.

Little Wolves was named one of the Best Books 2013 Adult Books for Teens by “School Library Journal” in November. Maltman’s first book, The Night Birds, received a Spur Award, the Friends of American Writers Literary Award, and an Alex Award.

Maltman lives in the Twin Cities. He received his MFA from Minnesota State University.

Little Wolves: An Evening with Author Thomas Maltman is one of the Library’s Adult Summer Reading Program activities. To learn more about the Summer Reading Program, or to register, visit

For more information, contact the Library at (319) 356-5200.