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Starr leads book talk on "The Ruins of Us"

Starr leads book talk on "The Ruins of Us"

Adds personal experience living in Middle East

September 18th, 2013 in News

Chamber of Commerce Director Claudia Starr chats with a reader before she leads a book discussion on "The Ruins of Us," the 2013 One Read program novel, at Well Read Tuesday. Starr was chosen to lead the discussion due to her experience living in Qatar for several years.

Photo by Dean Asher

In a One Read book discussion held at Well Read Tuesday evening, many present expressed surprise or confusion at some of the Saudi Arabian customs depicted in Keija Parssinen's "The Ruins of Us."

For Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce Director Claudia Starr, the novel mirrored several years of her life.

"Often when I read books, things are not quite correct, but in this case it's right on," Starr said. "Things were exactly like my experience."

Starr lived in Qatar, an Arab state bordering Saudi Arabia, for several years starting in 2006 after being named the director of Al Shaqab Stud, an Arabian horse breeding facility that served the Qatari Emir.

Now the executive director of the local chamber of commerce, Starr was in a unique position to offer insight throughout the discussion as part of the Daniel Boone Library System's ongoing program designed to bring the central Missouri community together in discussion over a single novel.