Let’s read together. Several book-loving organizations will host events for this year’s One Book, One Valley initiative. One Book, One Valley is a valley-wide reading and discussion program that encourages all residents to read the same book at the same time to create a community book club. This year’s book selection is “Finders Keepers: A Tale of Archaeological Plunder and Obsession” by Craig Childs. Beyond what most people think about archaeology — with its cleanly numbered dates and discoveries — lies a vibrant and controversial realm of scientists, thieves and contested land claims.
To whom does the past belong? Is the archaeologist who discovers a lost tomb a sort of hero, or a villain? If someone steals a relic from a museum and returns it to the ruin it came from, is she a thief? Childs’ riveting tale is a ghost story — an intense, impassioned investigation into the nature of the past and the things we leave behind. We visit lonesome desert canyons and fancy Fifth Avenue art galleries, journey throughout the Americas, Asia, the past and the present. Childs writes about the relationship between humans, animals, landscape and time. His stories come from visceral, personal experience, whether in the company of illicit artifact dealers or in deep wilderness. He has published more than a dozen critically acclaimed books and is a commentator for National Public Radio’s Morning Edition. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Men’s Journal, Outside and Orion. At High Country News, he’s a contributing editor, and he teaches writing for both the University of Alaska in Anchorage and Southern New Hampshire University.
The lineup of events is highlighted by a visit from the author himself. Childs will appear at Colorado Mountain College on April 3 at 6 p.m.
The full lineup of scheduled events includes:
• High Elevation Archaeology: An Exploration of Eagle County’s 6,000 Year Legacy, a presentation by Melissa Elkins, of Metcalf Archaeology: Walking Mountains Science Center, Feb. 25 at 6:30 p.m.
• Book discussion: Vail Public Library, March 12 at 5 p.m.
• Children’s Event (geared toward youth in second through fifth grades): Time Scene Investigation: Snowmass Village, presented by the Denver Museum of Nature and Science: Walking Mountains Science Center, March 15, 4 or 6 p.m. ($5 fee).
• Book discussion: Eagle Public Library, March 24, 6:30 p.m.
• Book discussion: Avon Public Library, March 25, noon.
• Meet the author Craig Childs at Colorado Mountain College in Edwards, April 3 at 6 p.m.
• Prehistoric Ceramic Description and Analysis: An Archaeology Course At Walking Mountains Science Center: April 4-6. Presented by Kevin Black, Colorado assistant state archaeologist. Call Cynthia Vodopich for more information and to register at 970-524-7981 ($18 fee).
• Book discussion: Gypsum Public Library, April 21, 6:30 p.m.
• March 17: “Land Before Time” (G), Vail Public Library, 1 p.m.
• March 18: “National Treasure” (PG), Vail Public Library, 5 p.m.
• March 20: “People, Paths, Perspectives: A High Country Speaker Series Presentation by Craig Childs” (NR), Avon Public Library, 6 p.m.
• March 30: “National Treasure 2” (PG), Vail Public Library, 2 p.m.
• April 6: “National Treasure” (PG), Eagle Public Library, 1 p.m.
For more information, call Cortni at the Avon Public Library at 970-949-6797 or visit www.coloradomtn.edu/onebook. One Book, One Valley is presented by The Bookworm of Edwards, Colorado Mountain College, Eagle Valley Library District, the Vail Public Library and Walking Mountains Science Center.