Three events with true crime and fiction writer will support library’s building and expansion campaign


By Carole Howard  | PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

You are cordially invited to attend any or all of our three special events on Saturday, May 13, when true crime and fiction author Ron Franscell will join us to raise funds for your library’s building and expansion campaign. 

From 9 to 11 a.m., he’ll lead a writer’s workshop at your library. The cost is $25 and it is limited to 20 seats. 

From 12:30 to 1:15 p.m., he’ll host a free gathering for book clubs and other readers at the library to discuss his psychological thriller “Deaf Row.” There is no charge for this session, but seating is limited.

From 6 to 8:30 p.m. (note the time change from last week’s “Library News” column) he’ll be at the Tennyson Building Event Center at 197 Navajo Trail Drive for a special fireside chat interview with hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Tickets are $40 in advance and $45 at the door. Seating is limited.

If you attend both the writer’s workshop and fireside chat interview, you are eligible for a discounted price of $55 per person. Tickets are available at your library or at

A former reporter and a current New York Times bestselling author, Franscell may be best known for “The Darkest Night,” his true account of the 1975 crimes against two childhood friends in the small Wyoming community where he grew up. Today, he and his wife live in Placitas, N.M. 

New writers support group begins today

On Thursdays beginning today, May 4, from 9 to 11 a.m., the Ruby Writers Guild will welcome writers who are looking for opportunities, support and camaraderie with other writers. Members will provide support, resources and guidance for each other.

Lifelong Learning today

Our free spring Lifelong Learning lectures from 6 to 7:15 p.m. on Thursdays continue with three more in May. 

Today, May 4, features award-winning writer C. Neal Johnson, who will teach you how to write a feature-length movie script. Note this presentation only is from 5:30 to 7 p.m. 

May 11 will highlight Dr. Janice McIntyre with an introductory yoga class, so you should wear comfortable clothing and bring a bottle of water. 

May 18 will feature Arleen Prochazka from the Pagosa Weather Team describing the services they offer to our community and telling us about North American monsoon formation and its impact on our local mountains. 

Pick up a brochure at the library for more details on these interesting and informative presentations. 

Online author talk today

There will be two more talks this month in our free online virtual series featuring New York Times bestselling authors. You will have an opportunity to ask questions. 

Wednesday, May 10, at 6 p.m. will showcase Jena Friedman, author of “Not Funny,” a collection of essays on life, comedy and culture. 

Saturday, May 20, at noon will feature Courtney Summers, Canadian award-winning author of “Sadie” and other novels for young adults. 

Powerhouse fun

Students in the fourth through eighth grade will enjoy hands-on STEAM projects tomorrow, Friday, May 5 from 3 to 4 p.m. focusing on circuits and tinker technology.

Tween/teen takeover tomorrow

Teens and tweens will want to join us tomorrow, Friday, May 5, for our free Teen and Tween Takeover of the library from 2 to 4 p.m. During that time, our conversational computers will be reserved only for users aged 9-19.

Board games tomorrow

Tomorrow, Friday, May 5, is our free Board Game Central from 4 to 6 p.m. If you love board games, we invite you to bring your favorite game or explore the library’s collection.

Book buddies Saturday

Students in kindergarten through second grade will celebrate favorite book characters with books and art Saturday, May 6, from 10 to 11 a.m. at this free event. 

Makerspace on Saturday

Kids, tweens and teens are invited to a free Makerspace session on Saturday, May 6, from 11 a.m. to noon when we’ll provide the materials so you can make upcycled CD coasters.

Beginner computer class 

Join us from 1 to 2 p.m. on May 8 for the third session and May 10 for the fourth in a free beginner computer class Mondays and Wednesdays aimed at adults who want to learn practical skills related to PC use, emails, and creating new documents and folders. Registration is required. Note that when you sign up, you are committing to all eight sessions in this month-long program.

Ruby’s Book Club
next Tuesday

Ruby’s Book Club will meet in person from 2 to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, May 9, to discuss the classic “The Bell Jar” by Sylvia Plath. Copies are available at your library. 

This book club is held the second Tuesday of each month, alternating between fiction and nonfiction titles. Anyone is welcome to attend.

Dungeons and Dragons

Next Tuesday, May 9, from 4 to 5:30, join our Dungeons and Dragons game free for teens and young adults. Registration is required because space is limited. Contact to join.

Read with a Ranger

Children aged 3 and older are invited to a free session Wednesday, May 10, from 10 to 11 a.m. when they will enjoy stories read by national forest rangers and make a nature craft. This special event replaces our regular family storytime.

Homework and
tutoring help

Free homework assistance and elementary tutoring are available for students in kindergarten through fourth grade on Wednesdays from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. A registration packet for parents and guardians is available by emailing the library or coming in. 

Knowledge Bowl

Our free middle school Knowledge Bowl takes place next Thursday, May 11, from 4 to 5 p.m. for tweens and teens. Participants form teams of up to six people to compete against each other by answering questions that cover a range of topics from math to spelling to pop culture. 

Knowledge Bowl runs every second and fourth Thursday for the remainder of the school year. It is open to students in grades four to eight, or ages 11-14. No registration is required.

ESL classes

Free in-person evening classes take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with 4 to 5 p.m. reserved for beginners and 5 to 7 p.m. for both intermediate and advanced students. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

PALS/GED adult

Join Mark for his free PALS sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to help with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. 

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Judy will help you with basic questions relating to computers, smartphones and tablets and also provide assistance in accessing any of the library’s online resources. No appointment is needed for these drop-in sessions. 

Downloadable books 

CloudLibrary has a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audiobooks for all ages. To access this free digital collection, download the cloudLibrary app, answer a few simple questions, select AspenCat Union Catalog for the name of your library, then enter your library card number and four-digit PIN. Library staff are happy to help you set up your device if you need assistance.


“Keep Your Eye on the Ball and Other Cliches to Live By” by Dr. Carolyn Lee is an inspirational look at well-worn platitudes. “Saved” by Benjamin Hall is a memoir by this Fox News reporter gravely injured in Kyiv. “A Living Remedy” by Nicole Chung is a memoir about a family facing a lack of access to health care. 

Mysteries, thrillers
and suspense

“What Lies in the Woods” by Kate Alice Marshall takes place 22 years after young girls’ testimony sent a man to prison. “The Crooked Branch” by Jeanine Cummins tells of two mothers living in two very different times. “Standing Dead” by Margaret Mizushima features Dep. Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner searching for her missing mother. 

Other novels

“The Island of Missing Trees” by Elif Shafak begins with the blossoming love of two teens, a Greek and a Turkish Cypriot. “The Flames” by Sophie Haydock features four women in social elite Vienna at the dawn of the 20th century. 

Large print

“Weyward” by Emilia Hart ranges from the witch-hunts of the 17th century to a similar situation today. “It’s One of Us” by J.T. Ellison begins when a killer is identified as a sperm donor’s son. “The Golden Spoon” by Jessa Maxwell is a mystery that takes place at a bestselling baker’s home. “The Sister Effect” by Susan Mallery features two sisters and the daughter of one of them. “Hang the Moon” by Jeannette Walls showcases strong women dealing with business and family issues in rural Virginia during prohibition. 

Books on CD

“Those Empty Eyes” by Charlie Donlea features a legal investigator whose history as a lone survivor of her family’s slaughter coincides with current crimes. “Wild Warriors” by Nicholas Sansbury Smith and Anthony J. Melchiorri is the final book in the New Frontier sci-fi trilogy. “Dark Angel” by John Sandford is a Letty Davenport mystery. “Shadow of Death” by Heather Graham is a thriller that begins in caves outside Denver. 


We are grateful to our anonymous donors for their donations. When we are open, material donations are accepted for the Friends of the Library at the front desk – not through the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please. 

The Friends take fiction published in 2013 or newer and nonfiction that is 2018 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Quotable quote 

“I’ve learned that the secret to finding your passion is to start bringing passion and enthusiasm to everything you do. And I do mean everything ... Whether you’re making the bed, brushing your teeth or cleaning the cat box, do it like you really want to do it. This one habit can change everything.” — Marie Forleo, American entrepreneur, podcaster and author of advice books.


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