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Free spooky activities and prizes on Halloween

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On Halloween night, the library will be offering a family friendly place for slightly spooky activities and haunted crafts.

Supplies will be provided to create your own unique “masquerade” mask and decorate Halloween-inspired, haunted marshmallows. There will also be a photo booth available where you can show off your new mask or dress up using some of the provided props if you need a costume. Plus, there will be “Trick-or-Treat” mystery prizes to boot! This program is free to attend and open to all ages, so make the Roswell Public Library a part of your Halloween fun.

For more information, contact the library by calling 575-622-7101, visiting us at 301 N. Pennsylvania Ave. or the website at roswell-nm.gov.

Book Talk by Colette Speer
Reference Librarian

Radius Books, based in Santa Fe, is a nonprofit publishing company that “encourages, promotes and publishes books of artistic and cultural value for a wide audience.” Its books are projects “distinguished in both form and substance: beautiful objects by important artists of all ranks.” Through its Library and School Donation Program, Radius Books donates art books to underfunded libraries and schools nationwide. Roswell Public Library is lucky to have been a recipient of this program this year and the library recently acquired some titles as a result.

One particular title from Radius Books, incredible for both its visual art and its writing, is “My Dakota” by Rebecca Norris Webb. The first page of the book reveals its subtitle: “An elegy for my brother who died unexpectedly.” The book unfolds with a single, searing, photographic image on nearly every two-page fold along with sparse, but affecting narrative written in cursive, about the photographer/writer’s brother and the author’s own grief.

The images are arresting: a mix of landscape, scenes with animals and natural life, farmland and fruit that recur like lines in a poem. In between these, another resonant kind of image is of fabric, which appears torn or draped, and reminiscent of something theatrical like a curtain fall, where something has happened or will happen soon. The collection of images build and feel like a kind of unveiling — always only partially — to explore the photographer/writer’s very personal response to grief and to the landscape of her home state of South Dakota.

In the book’s afterword, Norris Webb writes that she had set out to photograph her home in 2005 and that her brother, David, died unexpectedly of heart failure the next year. “For months,” she writes, “one of the few things that eased my unsettled heart was the landscape of South Dakota. It seemed all I could do was drive and photograph. I began to wonder — does loss have its own geography?”

If you’re a reader interested in beautiful books — particularly photography and art by a wide range of artists — take a look at the new books section where some other titles from Radius are currently located. In addition to “My Dakota,” you’ll find “Catherine Eaton Skinner: 108” and of regional interest: “Georgia O’Keefe: Watercolors 1916-1918,” which, according to the publisher, “catalogs the first major exhibition (04/29/2016 – 10/30-2016, Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, NM) of the nearly 50 watercolors created by O’Keeffe between 1916 and 1918, while she lived in Canyon, Texas.”

These are exquisitely made books showcasing art and they are beautiful in and of themselves, as objects to hold, see and read.