NEBRASKA CITY - The Morton-James Public Library will host Kelly Bequette and Katie Dia for a book signing and reception on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 2 p.m. in its Kimmel Gallery.

An exhibit features the newly released children’s book Iggy’s Zoo Adventure through Dec. 29.

Author Blake Bequette is a 2012 graduate of Lourdes Central Catholic and graduated as a 2nd lieutenant from West Point in 2016. He served a deployment in Iraq and earned his graduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Bequette and her son collaborated on writing the book and Dia provided illustrations.

Here is the library's press release 


The Morton-James Public Library will host a book signing and reception on Saturday, December 9 at 2 pm in its Kimmel Gallery.

Open to the public at no charge. Kelly Bequette and Katie Dia will be here to talk with guests and sign books. The exhibit comprised of illustrations from the newly released children’s book Iggy’s Zoo Adventure. The exhibit is available for viewing during regular Library hours (Monday-Thursday 9-6; Friday 9-5 and Saturday 9-1). The Library will not be open for regular library services during the reception time on Saturday, December 9. The exhibit runs until December 29. Morton-James Public Library is located at 923 1st Corso. Please use south exit by the book drop for entrance to the Reception.

Blake Bequette (Author) was born on a military base in Germany where his father was stationed in the army. His family continued to move to five different bases within the United States and settled in Nebraska City Blake’s freshman year of high school. Blake graduated from Lourdes Central Catholic High School in 2012. He graduated as a 2nd Lieutenant in the US Army and a degree in mechanical engineering from West Point in 2016. He was selected to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a graduate degree. After getting his graduate degree in 2018, he continued to serve in the Army for four years which included a deployment to Iraq. He is engaged to Rachel Kammer, and lives in Austin, Texas. He regularly comes back to Nebraska City to visit family and friends. Blake enjoys basketball, rock climbing, kiteboarding, anything outdoors, and will read anything he can get his hands on. He wrote many short stories in his youth. He never was particularly into children’s books but that changed when his nephew, Ignatius, was born and he and his mother, Kelly, dreamed up the idea to write Ignatius a book for his first birthday.

Kelly Bequette (Author) enjoyed collaborating with Blake and Katie on Iggy’s Zoo Adventure. She enjoyed the time working with Blake on the story especially the pages that encouraged interaction, like standing on one leg, doing the crab or bear crawl, or saying “NO”. She shared a lot of good laughs with Blake during the project. She also enjoyed working with a young, local, and very talented artist, Katie Dia, to bring the characters to life through her art. She loves reading books to children, especially her grandson, Ignatius. Kelly lives in Nebraska City with her husband, Bryan and owns The Keeping Room Café. She loves spending time with her family and friends, walking outdoors, swimming, eating out, and animals.

Katie Dia (Illustrator) is an aspiring artist who is currently a graphic artist student at the University of Nebraska Lincoln. She enjoys using all different types of mediums from painting to crocheting. Katie has had the privilege of showcasing her art during her A Wave of Reality exhibit at the Kimmel Gallery in April 2022. That exhibit focused on her wish to raise awareness of ocean pollution and overfishing.

The Library will be closed for the holidays from December 22-25.