Books available now at library...Being Mortal book discussion Sept. 13

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Following a successful turn-out in April to discuss Dr. Atul Gawande’s book, Being Mortal: Illness, Medicine and What Happens in the End, a second discussion event is being planned for September.

The book is now available to the public for reading in preparation for a panel discussion on  Tuesday, Sept. 13, from 6-8 p.m. at Eagle Ridge Independent and Assisted Living meeting room, 1329 Acre Street. Food will be provided.

The panel will consist of Dr. Andrew Smith, Pastor Penny Hansel, Nancy Heitman, BSN and Stephens Minister, and Julie Fagner of Crossing Rivers Hospice, and possibly others. Those attending are invited to share experiences and ask questions. There is no cost to attend the panel discussion.

About the book: As the time of death approaches, individuals and families are often faced with difficult personal decisions that seem to pit quality of life against longevity. Should they move to hospice care and seek a peaceful death at home with loved ones?  Or should they risk another treatment, surgery or drug with the possibility of dying in the ICU, hooked up to machines, unable to communicate?  Dr. Gawande’s book grapples with these challenging questions by telling the stories of people who have wrestled with them, and provides a way to “start the conversation.”  

Books and an audio book on CD are available at the Guttenberg Public Library.  BRIDGES downloads has four copies of the eBook, and two copies of the audio book to download.  BRIDGES may be accessed with a patron’s library card through the library’s catalog page: A podcast of an author interview is available on Also, if you Google the author and book title there are many purchase options online, including free Kindle copies.

This event is coordinated by the GFWC/Iowa Ingleside and Book Clubs, Stephen Ministries and the Guttenberg Public Library. RSVPs to committee members would be helpful to assure space for all who plan to attend. Committee members are Jane Staebler (, Carolyn Hoffmann, Laura Manson, Julie Parker, the Guttenberg Public Library and Juanita Loven (

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