Belfast Free Library, 106 High St., will host a reading group and facilitated discussion of an important new book by noted author Adam Hochschild Thursday, March 8 at 6:30 p.m. This reading group is sponsored by the Maine Humanities Council and the new Machiah Center.

“To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1912-1918” tells the story of some of the leaders and opponents of World War I in England and puts in perspective the series of wars that have followed what was supposed to have been “the war to end all wars.” The discussion will be facilitated by Candace Kanes, curator/historian for the Maine Memory Network, a digital museum and archive operated by the Maine Historical Society. Kanes has worked on Maine Memory Network since 2003. She holds a doctorate in American history from the University of New Hampshire and taught history at the Maine College of Art from 1998 to 2010. She also has taught at the University of New England, Bates College and the University of Southern Maine. A former newspaper reporter and editor, Kanes has led many Maine Humanities Council Let’s Talk About It series since 1999.

Hochschild, who summers in Turner, is the author of seven books, mostly on human rights, including “King Leopold’s Ghost.” He has won a reputation as a master of suspense and vivid character portrayal and his skill at evoking such struggles for justice has made him a finalist for the National Book Award and won him a host of other prizes.

This is a book that should be of interest to Maine citizens of diverse political persuasions. Its rich, sympathetic portraits of all the characters in the book leave one wondering if humanity can ever find a way to prevent cycles of mass violence before they get out of control. Hochschild’s book should provoke many great discussions as well as give participants a really good read.

Those interested in joining the discussion may sign up at the main circulation desk of the library. The library has a limited number of books to lend, which will distributed on a first come basis. Those interested also may call the library at 338-3884, ext. 10 to sign up.

Machiah Center is a nonprofit residential center in New Gloucester that sponsors public discussions, meet-the-writer events, reading groups, conferences, films and, beginning in 2015, a residential program for organizers, scholars, filmmakers and social researchers in the areas of sustainable agriculture, public education, alternatives to war, gay rights, human rights, community and labor organizing and leadership development.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to