Holiday-themed books for your reading pleasure


By Carole Howard 
PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

Your library has added multiple books with holiday and inspirational themes to our collection for your reading pleasure and for the enjoyment of your family and friends.

“Christmas in Peachtree Bluff” by Kristy Woodson Harvey features three generations of women who come together when a hurricane threatens to destroy the holiday season. “God Rest Ye, Royal Gentlemen” by Rhys Bowen is a murder mystery involving the royal family. “Dear Santa” by Debbie Macomber is about a woman who gets inspiration from a box of old letters to Santa. “Christmas by the Book” by Anne Marie Ryan is set in a bookshop in a British village. 

“Always in December” by Emily Stone is a romance featuring two people who try to avoid celebrating Christmas. “The Wish” by Nicholas Sparks is about the enduring legacy of first love. “The Holiday Swap” by Maggie Knox is a romance about twin sisters who switch places two days before Christmas.

Books on CD include “Best in Snow” by David Rosenfelt that begins when a dog finds a body; it also is available as a book.

Large print books include “The Christmas Promise” by Richard Paul Evans featuring twin sisters, “The Santa Suit” by Mary Kay Andrews that begins with a mysterious note, “The Twelve Jays of Christmas” by Donna Andrews is a Meg Langslow mystery, “Santa Cruise” by Fern Michaels about a reunion of four high school students and “The Christmas Wedding Guest” by Susan Mallery is a romance.

Free public health

The next free public health session with representatives from San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) will be at the library from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 16, to discuss the dangers of radon gas in your home and distribute free radon test kits. 

The geology of southwest Colorado leads to an increased risk of radon gas here, so this is an important topic for us to understand. In fact, radon exposure is the leading cause of lung cancer, even in people who have never smoked. Take advantage of the expertise of the staff at SJBPH to attend this latest event in their public health series at your library.

Library hours

Most of our programs are happening in person. Also, our hours have returned to pre-COVID levels — and even more on weekdays:

• Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

• Tuesdays and Thursdays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

• Saturdays, the library is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

 For those uncomfortable coming into the building, curbside service continues. Phone(970) 264-2209 when you are in the parking lot so staff can bring the items out for you. If you put a hold on something, please wait for your usual alert (email, phone call or text) before coming to pick it up. 

cloudLibrary computer class

Brad will explain this service that provides free downloadable e-books and audio books for all ages in a computer class tomorrow, Friday, Dec. 3, from 4 to 5 p.m.

Bedtime storytime
for all ages

Come to the Turner Reading Room in the library next Tuesday, Dec. 7, for a special free session including a bedtime story, a few lullabies and some cozy family time from 6:30 to 7 p.m.

Teen book club next Wednesday

We invite sixth- through 12th-graders to join the free in-person teen book club next Wednesday, Dec. 8, from 4 to 5 p.m. for a lively discussion of what you’ve been reading and help us choose what we’ll read next. 

Special Spanish
family storytime 

Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for free in-person children’s stories, games and plenty of reasons to get up and move. Wednesday, Dec. 8, is Hora de Cuentos, when you can come to practice your Spanish with Andrea Cox as she shares some of her favorite Spanish books. 

Saturday’s all-ages Discovery Times continue on Facebook at 2:30 p.m. with games, art ideas, science experiments, history and more. 

Dungeons and Dragons 

Join us Tuesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. for our ongoing Dungeons and Dragons game free for teens and young adults on Google Meet. Contact to learn how to join. If you don’t have Internet access, contact us anyway — we may be able to accommodate you in the library. 

In-person gaming

Enjoy free all-ages video gaming on the Xbox 360 Kinect on Fridays from 2:30 to 3:45 p.m. 

New writing challenge 

A new all-ages writing challenge will be posted Dec. 6 on the library’s Facebook page. We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free all-ages activity.

New storywalk for kids

Theme for our new storywalk Dec. 6-18 is based on the book “Over and Under in the Snow.” Get outdoors and take a walk, following the pages of the book and reading the story as you stroll along. Watch for signs outside the library that follow the sidewalk up toward the elementary school. After you finish the walk, pick up materials for a craft or activity at the library. 

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Brad will help you resolve issues with your computer, smartphone, tablet and other electronic devices. Note there will be no Tech Time Dec. 7 and 9. 

ESL classes

Free in-person evening classes now take place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 7 p.m. Beginning students attend from 4 to 5 p.m., intermediate students from 5 to 6 p.m. and advanced students from 7 to 8 p.m. 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. 

Las clases de ESL

Las clases nocturnas gratuitas en persona ahora se llevan a cabo los martes y jueves de 4 a 7 p.m. Los estudiantes principiantes asisten de 4 a 5 p.m., estudiantes intermedios de 5 a 6 p.m. y estudiantes avanzados de 7 a 8 p.m. Por favor, ayúdenos a correr la voz sobre estas clases a otras personas en nuestra comunidad que estén interesadas, y contáctenos por teléfono o correo electrónico si tiene alguna pregunta. 

Adult education 

Our free PALS (Pagosa Adult Learning Services) session take place on Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. (note the new time), when Mark helps with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. 

Activities calendars

To be sure you don’t miss any of the free library activities available to you and your family, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month. There are three versions — children, teens and adults.


“Mayor” is a political saga featuring the Christian mayor of Ramallah in a film about the Israel-Palestine conflict. “The Hidden Life of Trees” by German forester explores the lessons we can learn from the forest. 

Books on CD

“2 Sisters Detective Agency” by James Patterson and Candice Fox features half-sisters who inherit their father’s detective agency. “Dark Tarot” by Christine Feehan is the latest in the Carpathian paranormal romantic suspense series. “Five Tuesdays in Winter” is a collection of short stories by novelist Lily King. “Silverview” by John Le Carre is the last spy novel written by this iconic chronicler of the post-Cold War era.

Large print

“Never” by Ken Follet features a U.S. president and others seeking to avoid world crises. “Game On” by Janet Evanovich is a Stephanie Plum mystery. 


“Real Love” by Sharon Salzberg provides mindfulness exercises and meditation techniques to help you create and nurture love relationships with yourself and others. “Healing with CBD” by Eileen Konieczny and Lauren Wilson is a guide to using cannabis to help you with anxiety, depression, migraines, fibromyalgia, seizures, cancer and more. 

Mysteries, suspense
and thrillers

“A Blizzard of Polar Bears” by Alice Henderson is a suspense story featuring a wildlife biologist studying polar bears in the Canadian Arctic. “Deacon King Kong” by James McBride explores the aftermath of the shooting of a Brooklyn drug dealer by a church deacon. 

Other novels

“Tin Camp Road” by Ellen Airgood follows the life of a single mother living on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. “What Passes for Love” by Trisha R. Thomas is set in the 1850s as a black slave “passes” to marry an Englishman in need of a wife. “Noor” by Nnedi Okorafor is a sci-fi story about biotech and destiny in near-future Nigeria. “The Spice King,” “The Gilded Lady” and “The Prince of Spies” by historical novelist Elizabeth Camden are the first three books in a new Hope and Glory series. 

Downloadable e-books and audiobooks 

We have a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audio books for all ages — children, tweens, teens and adults — in cloudLibrary. The items in cloudLibrary are purchased separately from physical items, so the books available are different — and it continues to use the consortium’s contributions as well as those that we bought. Select AspenCat Union Catalog when setting up cloudLibrary for use. Email or phone us at (970) 264-2209 if you need our help setting up this service on your device. 


Many thanks to Sherry Spears, Veronica Johnson and Linda Sue King for their generous monetary donations, and to Marci Thomas and our anonymous donors for their materials donations. 

Please put your materials donations into the drop box at the library — not at City Market, which is reserved for returns. 

Library foundation

Please consider a tax-deductible donation to the Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library Foundation to support and enhance your library by raising funds for information resources, programs, services and facilities. Mail checks to P.O. Box 2045, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 or call Cindi Galabota at (970) 264-2209. 

Quotable quote

“If you don’t like where you are, move. You are not a tree.” — Hoda Kotb, author and co-anchor of NBC’s “Today” show.


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