The reading group will discuss “Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics,” by Joseph S. Nye, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 5, at the Ashland library, 410 Siskiyou Blvd. The Elastic Mind Book Discussion Group will discuss “Soft Power vs. Hard Power in the 21st Century.” It is the author's thesis that soft power will help prevent terrorists from recruiting supporters from among the moderate majority and help deal with critical global issues that require multilateral cooperation among states. The lively discussion will be lead by Joanna Fenn. Admission is free.