Things They Carried cover with Book Read logo

The selection for the 4th annual Community Book Read is "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien.

Community invited to read ‘Things They Carried’

Posted October 15, 2018

One Book One Community – The Plymouth Chapter has chosen “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien for the fourth annual book read.

 “The Things They Carried” is a collection of short stories published in 1990 about a platoon of U.S. soldiers fighting on the ground during the Vietnam War, based upon the author’s experiences in the 23rd Infantry Division.

Plymouth Public Library has many copies of “The Things They Carried” available to lend. In addition, Book Heads bookstore is offering a 10 percent discount to those purchasing their own copy.

Numerous events related to the book read have been scheduled for November:

  • Film screening of "The War at Home": Nominated for an Academy Award and widely considered one of the most important political films ever made, this documentary vividly chronicles the anti-war protest movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The screening will begin at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 6 in the Acuity Auditorium at Plymouth High School, 125 Highland Ave. Please note: The film does not have a rating, but it may not be appropriate for everyone due to profanity and disturbing images of war.
  • Book discussion: Bill Rishel and Ken Ristow will lead a discussion about “The Things They Carried” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8 at 52 Stafford, 52 Stafford St.
  • Book discussion: Rachel Stoyke will lead a discussion about “The Things They Carried” at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 12 at Plymouth Public Library, 130 Division St.
  • Panel Discussion: Allen Nohl, Konrad Kaczkowski and the Rev. Philip D. Reifenberg, facilitated by Russ Groblewski, will share their thoughts and memories of service during the Vietnam War, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14 at The Hub, 1611 Eastern Ave.

Admission to all events is free; no sign-up is necessary. Reading the book is encouraged, but not required.

Organizers hope many Vietnam veterans join the book read, if only just to listen to the discussions, which is part of the reason why the events were scheduled leading up to Veterans Day on Nov. 11.

“We know this was a difficult war and that many felt unappreciated when they returned home,” said Kathryn Murray, director of Community Education & Recreation for the Plymouth School District. “We hope that the book discussions and the movie, which covers protests here in Wisconsin, will bring us all to a better understanding of how difficult it was to be a veteran of the Vietnam War.  We hope this experience helps our vets feel the thanks they all deserve.”

The book read is sponsored by Community Education & Recreation and Plymouth Public Library. The inaugural book read in 2015 featured “Go Set a Watchman” by Harper Lee. Subsequent titles were “The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics” in 2016, and “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” in 2017.

For younger readers: Families of students in kindergarten through fourth grade are encouraged to participate in the elementary book read sponsored by Horizon Elementary School, choosing from among three titles: “Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom,” “Malcolm at Midnight” and “El Deafo.”

Learn more:
• Visit the One Book One Community teen/adult website at
• Visit the One Book One Community elementary family read website at
• Follow One Book One Community – the Plymouth Chapter on Facebook at
• Explore the Community Engagement section of our award-winning District Report Card to learn more about ways to interact with our schools and students.