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Auglaize County’s 2019 Community Read: The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel

The 2019 Anniversary Committee is excited to announce a Community Read in our celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s Walk on the Moon. We’ve chosen The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel. The book follows the changes in the lives of the families of our earliest astronauts. “As America's Mercury Seven astronauts were launched on death-defying missions, television cameras focused on the brave smiles of their young wives. Overnight, these women were transformed from military spouses into American royalty. They had tea with Jackie Kennedy, appeared on the cover of Life magazine, and quickly grew into fashion icons. As their celebrity rose-and as divorce and tragedy began to touch their lives-the wives continued to rally together, forming bonds that would withstand the test of time, and they have stayed friends for over half a century.*”

The Community Read is an opportunity for our county to come together to share ideas about a book and its themes, and to hear the author speak about her work. Our county’s book clubs, literary clubs, service clubs and schools are planning to read this book and discuss it at a variety of events across the county. We are kicking off our celebration in the New Year with book club discussions in Cridersville, New Knoxville, St. Marys, Wapakoneta, and Waynesfield. The Central (Wapakoneta) Library will also show the TV series based on the book. The Astronaut Wives' Club Lunch Dates will be held on Wednesdays at Noon starting on January 9th and ending on March 13th. Each week, we will watch one episode and have a discussion. Participants are welcome to bring their lunch.

Please check the First on the Moon Facebook page, the Auglaize County Libraries’ website and the St. Marys Community Library’s website for more information about discussions. All of the county’s seven libraries will have copies of the book available to borrow and books are available for purchase at the Riverside Arts Center and the Wapakoneta Daily News.

The 2019 Anniversary Committee is pleased to announce that two speakers related to the book will be visiting Auglaize County. First, on Monday, January 14th at 6:00 pm in the Event Room at the Central (Wapakoneta) Library, Simone Thomas will discuss what it is really like to be the wife of an astronaut. Simone, wife of retired astronaut Dr. Don Thomas, will give a candid look at life on Earth while her husband worked among the stars.

Our second speaker will be the author of The Astronaut Wives Club, Lily Koppel. She will visit Auglaize County on Thursday, March 21st, 2019. Ms. Koppel’s main event will be at the Performing Arts Center at the Wapakoneta High School. She will discuss the book and her writing and research processes. She will also sign copies of the book at the event.

*The Astronaut Wives Club, Lily Koppel, book jacket description.

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