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2017 Pierce County Reads kicks off

Event to be held on JBLM

Mary Roach, author of Grunt, The Curious Science of Humans at War. Photo courtesy Pierce County Library System

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The 2017 Pierce County (PC) Reads Open House Kickoff will take place at the Lewis Army Museum Saturday, from 3-5 p.m. The 2017 book selection is Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, by Mary Roach.  

Visitors can view displays of military uniforms from various time periods.  There will be presentations about military science as well as music and refreshments. The Lewis Army Museum now has an off-post parking lot so you no longer need a gate pass to visit but you will need a photo identification card.

"In Grunt, Mary Roach gives readers a behind-the-scenes look at the science of how the United States materially prepares its soldiers for war.  The staff and resources of the Lewis Army Museum will be supporting the PC Reads program by providing physical examples of the uniforms and equipment worn by American soldiers in combat.  We have also coordinated with Army medical professionals at Madigan to speak on the medically-related topics covered in the book at PC Reads follow-on events.  The entire two-month long program will culminate with a talk given by the book's author at the McGavick Conference Center in Lakewood on April 28th," said Erik Flint, Lewis Army Museum director.

The program is in its 10th year. Each year a book is selected and Pierce County residents are encouraged to read the same book at the same time to spark a countywide conversation. "Pierce County Library System has adopted a Strategic Framework to guide everything we do, and it has three specific focus areas: Learning, Enjoyment and Community. The Pierce County Reads program engages people all across the county in all three of those areas. We are especially excited this year about the tie-in to our military community," said Mary Getchell, marketing and communications director, Pierce County Library System.

To participate in PC Reads, you can check out the book at a Pierce County Library or purchase the book.  Pierce County Library System has purchased almost 1,200 copies of the book in various formats: 1,100 regular print copies; 35 large print copies; 60 audio books; and 100 ebooks.  These will be distributed among all the libraries in the county.  King's Books in Tacoma is offering 15 percent off the 2017 PC Reads book when you show your Pierce County Library card.

In addition to the kickoff, signature events and book discussions are held throughout the county in March and April.  During many of these events, a servicemember from Joint Base Lewis-McChord will be present to lend military experience to the conversation. The program will culminate with an opportunity to meet best-selling author Mary Roach April 28, at 7 p.m. at the McGavick Conference Center.  KNKX's Morning Edition producer, Ariel Van Cleve, will interview author Mary Roach.  After the presentation, Roach will be available to autograph books. For more information and directions to the kickoff event, go to    

PC Reads Open House Kickoff, 3-5 p.m., Lewis Army Museum, 4320 Main St. and Constitution Dr., Joint Base Lewis-McChord, FREE, 253.967.7206

King's Books, Daily 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., 218 S.t Helens Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.8801,

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