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Pittsburg State University Alumni & Constituent Relations has partnered with Axe Library to create the Gorilla Alumni Book Club for alumni and friends.

Join our virtual book club to connect with fellow Gorillas while enjoying books authored by PSU alumni. The Gorilla Alumni Book Club connects members with a private forum where all participants can discuss the current book and network with one another. The group will read one book every two months, so readers have plenty of time for each book. Participation is free – you just need a copy of the book to enjoy!

How it works:

  1. Sign up for the Gorilla Alumni Book Club.
  2. Join the Gorilla Alumni Book Club Facebook group. This is where members will participate in weekly discussion questions regarding the books. Members can participate as much or as little as they like.
  3. Purchase or borrow the book from your local library. Axe Library will house copies of the selected book.

Frequently asked questions:

How often will books be read, what is the time commitment and what are the expectations?

We plan for the group to read one book every six weeks. The books selected cover a range of genres and length. The maximum amount of pages to read in a week is approximately 60 pages, and at times, this number will be much lower. If you have between one to two hours a week to read and participate, you should be fine.

Will there be any in-person meetings for the book club?

The book club will mostly be virtual and online. At the end of some of the books, we plan to welcome members to campus to have an open discussion and enjoy coffee and other beverages. When these occur, we will do our best to live stream the discussion to the Facebook group to keep everyone involved. However, the goal of this group is to allow participation from anywhere you have internet access.

Is there any cost to participate?

Participation is free! You just need a copy of the book to enjoy.

How do I get the books?

Members can purchase the book or borrow the book from local libraries.

How do book club discussions work?

The book club will have a moderator from Axe Library who manages the Facebook group where discussions occur online. The moderator will pose questions to the group and facilitate conversation about topics in the book. Members will be encouraged to post, share, and discuss as well. The Facebook group allows for ongoing conversation and makes it easy for readers to connect with each other online.

What if I am unable to participate in a week's discussion?

Real life happens and we understand that. The benefit of a virtual book club is that you can go back and see what you missed, as well as further add to the discussion. The discussion does not stop, so feel free to contribute at any time! Just be aware if you have not finished reading the weekly portion, there might be spoilers.

I've already signed up. How do I log in?

If you have already signed up, click here to join the Facebook group. 


Contact Danielle Driskill, Assistant Director of Alumni & Constituent Relations, at ddriskill@pittstate.edu or Ruth Monnier, Learning Outreach Librarian and Assistant Professor, at rmonnier@pittstate.edu.

Happy Reading, and Go Pitt State!

Current Book:

Searching for Fire by Janea Speer (MST ’10) is our fourth reading and will begin May 20, 2020.

Bio: J. Speer writes poetry, short stories, and books in her spare time. She earned a Master's degree in Human Resource Development from Pittsburg State University and a Graduate Certificate in Business Administration. J. Speer works at a frame shop for photography and artwork. She resides in Southeast Kansas.

Synopsis: An epic battle ensues between two elemental gods, the Fire Spirit, Ahiga, and Wind Spirit, Haseya. With the help of an unlikely guardian, a young woman pregnant with Ahiga's child makes it to safety, along with her family, and survives the rebirth of the world. Ahiga, who broke the Elemental Code, is imprisoned deep within the earth.

Due to Ahiga's actions, other creatures have survived as well, shapeshifters decayed by evil. They should never be trusted.

Many generations later, a young boy named Kokopelli and his sister named Mai rescue a baby from the clutches of the shapeshifter wolf pack, relying on the aid of a wise medicine man named Sani who hides a secret of his own. In order to protect the people of their village hidden among the cliffs, they must undertake a dangerous quest. They journey past the Snake River into forbidden territories and encounter numerous perils. A mysterious figure in the forest will direct their path towards Ahiga. But only time will tell whether they can track down the Fire Spirit in time to save their unsuspecting village community from an impending siege of shapeshifters.


  • May 20th: Chapters 1-5

  • May 27th: Chapters 6-10

  • June 3rd: Chapters 11-14

  • June 10th: Chapters 15-18

  • June 17th: Chapters 19-23

Searching for Fire

Amazon     Barnes & Noble     Archway Publishing

During COVID-19, many independent bookstores are providing delivery and curbside pick-up. Check with your local bookstores today!

Upcoming Books:

Previous Book Club Reads:

Questions? Contact PSU Alumni & Constituent Relations

Phone: 620-235-4758    
Toll Free: 877-PSU-ALUM
Fax: 620-235-4949
Email: alumni@pittstate.edu

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