Four talented local authors donate books to the library

By Carole Howard
PREVIEW Columnist, and the Library Staff

Local author Judith Horky’s third book, “Ageless! Never Too Old, Never Too Late,” is a forthright and inspiring look at what it’s like to be a woman growing older in a world that idolizes youth.  It is a how-to, goals-oriented and uplifting book based on the experiences of Judy and other women, always presented in a compassionate, non-judgmental way.  It’s filled with warmth and humor — for example when her granddaughter pointed at her age spots and said, “Grammy!  You’ve got polka dots on your hands!”  This book will help aging women open doors marked Emotional, Spiritual, Physical and Mental — and feel better about themselves in the process.

Judy and her husband, Jim, moved to Pagosa what she calls “16 amazing years ago.”  They enjoy our remarkable mountains and lakes, dancing and music, their friends and family, and their dog Jesse.

Doug Roberts has written his two newest novels — “Deep Springs” and “The End of Childhood” —  under his full name, D. William Roberts.  “Deep Springs” will be of special interest to locals because it is a sci-fi story set in Pagosa Springs and dedicated to the residents of Archuleta County who, “would rise to this occasion if it ever developed.”  It’s also a military action adventure where the author drew heavily from his experiences in the army.

“The End of Childhood” is book three of the Long Shadow series.  The first two books were written by the late Wesley Arlin Brown.  Set in Tucumcari, N.M., it is the story of his grandson’s entry into adulthood in what the author calls, “one of this country’s last bastion of the Wild West.”  The author and Deb, his wife of 35 years, live in a home they built on two acres in Aspen Springs after his retirement.

Retired family physician and hospice doctor Pamela M. Kircher, M.D., has written an updated version of “Love is the Link,” first published 18 years ago.  Pam had her own childhood near-death experience (NDE) at age 6, and since then her life experiences have encompassed virtually the whole field of NDE.   The book covers from a spiritual perspective Pam’s own experiences and those of others who have shared their stories with her.  This edition contains updated nomenclature and a new final chapter discussing recent research and the general acceptance of NDE, as well as the path of hospice in the U.S.

Pam moved here from Houston in 1994, and served as medical director of integrated health care services at Mercy Medical Center from 2001-2006.  At that time, she and her husband, Mark, split their time between their house in Durango and their ranch on Trujillo Road in Pagosa, where they now live full time.  For more than 20 years, Pam has spoken across the U.S. and internationally about NDE and hospice.

Local author Ray McComber has written two novels, both based on real people.  The first is an adventure story called “RatPack Airlines” about the men in the Special Operations squadrons throughout Southeast Asia.  The story of these heroes is fiction, but it is based on fact and Ray’s own experiences in the Air Force and in Vietnam.  “RatPack Airlines” was an Air Force gunship, a military DC-3 equipped with multiple large machine guns, during the Vietnam War.  The tale is partially autobiographical, as one of the men uses his outdoor skills learned while living in northwestern Nebraska ranch country, as did Ray.

“Eye of the Wolf” is a thriller based on the life of a physicist named Sergei Zhukov as World War II was starting and the Germans were on Russia’s doorstep.  He developed a long-range sniper rifle and used it so successfully that he was high on the SS’s list of agents they wanted captured and killed.  His granddaughter once worked for Ray, gave him access to her grandfather’s notes in Russian, and translated them.  Ray is a computer science expert with an MBA in international finance.  He and his wife Nancy moved from Chicago to Pagosa in 2000 where they now enjoy golfing, skiing and hiking with their dog Trevor.

The four authors have generously donated copies of their books to your library for your reading pleasure.

Holiday closures

The library will close at noon on Dec. 24 and 31, and will be closed all day Christmas and Dec. 26.

Scrabble contest

Today (Thursday, Dec. 19) there is a free scrabble contest from noon–2:30 p.m., with fervent competitors, casual players and newbies all welcome.  Please register so we know how many to expect.

Art for kids 

Art Attack for kids in the first-third grades will have fun with art tomorrow (Friday, Dec. 20) from 2-3 p.m.

Holiday games for teens

There will be three special holiday gaming and card battles for teens during the school break — from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 23, Friday, Dec. 27, and  Monday, Dec. 30.  Enjoy X-box, Wii, board games and Pokemon card battles, and you are welcome to bring other trading card battle games.  Snacks provided.

Crafts for teens

“Make It!” is a free, teen craft time on the fourth Monday of every month — in this case, on Monday, Dec. 23, from 4-5 p.m.

Movies for adults

Every Friday at 10 a.m., you are invited for coffee, donuts and a movie for adults from the 1950s or 1960s.  The movie for tomorrow (Friday, Dec. 20) is “Manchurian Candidate.”

Technology classes

Meg Wempe is available for the highly popular Tech Tuesdays and Thursdays sessions 10 a.m.-noon Tuesdays and 3-5 p.m. Thursdays.  Join her for free, one-on-one informal help with your computer or tablet issues.

Memoirs and biographies

“The Men Who United the States” by Simon Winchester is a monumental history of America’s explorers, inventors, eccentrics and mavericks.

“Simple Dreams” is a musical memoir by singer Linda Ronstadt.  “Brilliant Blunders” by Mario Livio explores the mistakes of five genius scientists that led to brilliant discoveries.  “Duke” by Terry Teachout explores the life of Duke Ellington.  “Mud Season” by Ellen Stimson is the sensitive and often funny story of a family who moved from city life to a small Vermont town.  “My Brief History” by Stephen Hawking is a memoir by this brilliant cosmologist.  “The Heart of Everything That Is” by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is a biography of the great Sioux warrior-statesman Red Cloud. “Margaret Thatcher: Power and Personality” by Jonathan Aitken tells the story of the longest serving British prime minister.


“Stroke” is part of the Perspectives on Disease & Disorders medical series. “Health and Healing after Traumatic Brain Injury” edited by Heidi Muenchberger, Elizabeth Kendall and John Wright reviews the help sufferers can get through the power of family, friends, community and other support systems.

Cookbooks and foodies

“The Art of Simple Food II” by Alice Waters, owner of Chez Panisse restaurant, presents hundreds of new recipes reflecting the author’s passion for all parts of all seasonal produce.  “The Heart of the Plate” is the newest vegetarian cookbook by Mollie Katzen, author of Moosewood Cookbook and 11 other healthy-eating cookbooks.

“Provence, 1970” by Luke Barr tells about six iconic culinary figures including M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child and James Beard, who find themselves together in the south of France.

Thanks to our donors

For books and materials this week, we thank Cindy Galabota and Dena Schick.

Quotable quote

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), Irish writer, playwright and co-founder of the London School of Economics. 


For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, CDs and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at

This story was posted on December 19, 2013.