Rossland Public Library (Photo courtesy of Google Maps)

Library Corner: Books of My Life with Diana Daghofer

Do you love reading? If so, please consider participating in a “Books of My Life” interview

Diana Daghofer has lived in Rossland for 16 years, first attracted to the skiing and biking, and staying for the amazing community! Because Diana retired about two years ago from a career in public health research and writing, she has more time to read now, although her volunteer roster has her pretty busy too!

1. What is your favourite childhood book?

I was a huge fan of the Anne of Green Gables books. Anything written by Lucy Maud Montgomery, really. I just loved the feisty little red-head and her approach to life.

I also liked the Nancy Drew series. Again, a young woman operating outside of the “normal,” restrained composure young ladies were supposed to display at the time.

I was a big reader as a child, often long after bedtime. I got caught big-time one night when the candle I was reading by caught my headboard on fire! My mom wanted to replace it, but Dad insisted it stay in my room as a reminder never to read by candlelight!

2. Name one classic you’re embarrassed to say you’ve never read.

I took a Classic Literature class at university and I’m embarrassed to say I never made it through Moby Dick. I just couldn’t relate. Good thing for Coles Notes to help me through that class!

3. What book do you read over and over?

I tend not to re-read books, but one that has certainly stayed with me is A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry. So, so sad, but such strong life lessons about overcoming adversity with unfailing humour. I think of it often when I’m faced with a challenge in life. It reminds me that my challenges are pretty minor compared to much of the world’s people.

4. Name the last book that made you laugh.

I loved A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towles. The way the protagonist rolled with everything that came his way with great humour and acceptance felt like such a release. And the writing style! I love a well-crafted phrase, and I found myself reading lines from A Gentleman in Moscow over and over again; they just sounded so beautiful.

5. Name the last book that made you cry.

The answer to this question and the next — name one book everyone should read — is the same: They Called Me Number One, by Bev Sellars, her story of being a third-generation student at residential school in Williams Lake. The systematic denigration of the children, their parents, everything about their First Nations culture is something all Canadians should know about and weep for.

6. What are you reading now?

I’m reading my third non-fiction book by Aboriginal authors. I started with From the Ashes, by Jesse Thistle, then They Called Me Number One. I’m just finishing A Mind Spread Out on the Ground, by Alicia Elliott.

I liked the first two better than the third, but maybe I’m just getting tapped out of hard-hitting, raw tales of our shameful history regarding Canada’s Indigenous peoples.

Before these three, I read Caste, the Origins of our Discontents, by Isabel Wilkerson. She compares racism in the U.S. with the caste systems in India and Nazi Germany. Very interesting. It really helped explain U.S. politics to me – in particular the popularity of Donald Trump – which had totally confounded me to that point. I think it’s time for a light summer read next!

RPL Announcements and Information

The Summer Reading Club take-home packages go out on Tuesdays for the week’s activities. You can complete them at home or come in. The Club continues until August 19th. You can still register at the library or online or just drop in. Join summer students Evan and Elise Thursdays from 1:30 -2:30 p.m. (ages 5-8), Thursdays from 3 to 4:30 p.m. (ages 9-12), and Saturdays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. (family story time, all ages).

Art in the Library

Come in to view the beautiful photography of Shannon Martin and Janell Lancaster. Lauren Mask’s “Settling In” hangs near the front desk. You may apply to have your art displayed by visiting our website.

The West Kootenay French Association Traveling Tree will be displayed from July 27 to Aug. 5. The project explores the origins and diversity of the Francophonie in the West Kootenay and paints a portrait of young Francophones and Francophiles through an object (the tree) representing their attachment to the French language.

Did You Know?

• You can drop off used batteries for recycling.

• You can sponsor a collection! Anyone can donate and specify what books the donation is for. You will receive a tax receipt for your donation.

• You may also donate gently used books published in the last three years or items of local interest.

We’re opening up!

Masks are optional but recommended, seating is now available and there’s no capacity limit. Washrooms are open. The library is air-conditioned if you need a place to cool off during these warm summer days.

Books of My Life

Have you enjoyed reading “Books of My Life” interviews? Do you love reading and sharing your favourites? If so, please consider participating in a “Books of My Life” interview.

For more information, email I look forward to hearing from readers of all ages.