Author Banks Charms Students, Draws a Crowd

The Bexley Community Book Club’s 2014 Selected Author Russell Banks spent an evening and the better part of a school day in Bexley, electrifying students with an account of how his life experiences have fed his fiction, and delivering a thoughtful and provocative lecture in the Schottenstein Theatre on April 29, 2014.

Banks, an award-winning novelist with more than a dozen books to his credit, told students that his stories often focus on characters who are outsiders or people who lack a voice in our culture because his childhood was marked by violence, alcoholism and mental illness which left him feeling alone and marginalized.

“I felt, as a boy, very much on the outside,” he said. “So I’ve tried to see, and not blind myself to, the realities that surround me.”

Banks, the program’s seventh selected author, enjoyed his time in Bexley. “For the visiting writer,” he wrote in an email, “it’s extremely gratifying to be able to participate in the program… The hosts are warm and welcoming, and the audiences come prepared and eager to engage the visiting writer.”

For more photos, check out the Bexley Community Book Club Facebook page, and while you’re there, give it a “like”!