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Roswell Reads book set in depression-era Kentucky
by Joan Durbin
January 10, 2013 11:48 AM | 2091 views | 0 0 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print

One of the joys for anyone who reads is opportunities to share insights and opinions about a good book with others who have also read it.

That’s what makes the Roswell Reads program so much fun. At the start of a year, a committee announces the book that has been selected and residents across the city spend the next few weeks reading it.

In February and March, there are several book discussions and other activities scheduled before the program culminates with a special luncheon with the author.

For the eighth annual Roswell Reads, the award-winning novel “Sweeping Up Glass” by Carolyn Wall has been chosen. It meets all of the criteria set by the Friends of the Roswell Library’s selection committee.

“When the Roswell Reads Committee starts considering books for this community reads program, we try to find a book that is a ‘good read,’ plus we look for strong, interesting character development, a Southern connection, and something that addresses the human condition and the struggles of life,” said committee member and newly retired Roswell head librarian Lu Conti.

“We also want a well-written book and one that has received excellent reviews and that has wide appeal. In addition, we like to find an author to introduce to readers, an author whose work they might not otherwise have read.”

“Sweeping Up Glass” takes place in the mountains of Kentucky during the Great Depression of the 1930s. The main character, Olivia Harker, is struggling to keep going as she raises her grandson and deals with a mentally ill and elderly mother.

It was called “haunting, lyrical and entirely absorbing” by O Magazine and also won the fiction award at the 20th annual Oklahoma Book Awards.

Wall is a freelance writer and lecturer who conducts writing workshops and has taught creative writing to 4,000 children in her home state of Oklahoma. She has worked as the fiction editor for ByLine Magazine, senior staff writer for the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum and has written more than 1,000 stories, articles and reviews for more than 100 magazines and newspapers.

During the week of March 11, Wall will come to Roswell to participate in a variety of talks about her book with students and community members, including the Roswell Reads Literacy Luncheon on March 16 at 11:30 a.m. at the Roswell Adult Recreation Center.

She will also host a writing workshop March 15.

Other programs planned for the 2013 Roswell Reads program include a Noonday Nosh book discussion Feb. 19; an evening discussion March 6; a photography contest and a children’s program.

Most programs except the final event will be held at the Roswell Library. A complete list will be posted in early January.

Information: visit

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