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2020 Richmond Reads programs are virtual via Zoom, registration is required

By Press Release

Press release:

Richmond Memorial Library will host author Allen Eskens for a virtual visit on Thursday, Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. for the 2020 Richmond Reads program. His latest book "Nothing More Dangerous" is the one selected for this year.

In light of ongoing conditions, the decision was made to move forward with the program as an online event.

Community Book Discussions are also scheduled, as well as a review contest. 

“The Richmond Reads committee wholeheartedly feels that the messages of racial equality and justice in this book are too important and timely not to share,” says Samantha Stryker Basile, Community and Adult Services librarian and Richmond Reads coordinator.

“This year’s program may look a little different but we hope to still engage in very meaningful discussions with the community and have a great experience with our author.”

Richmond Reads is a community one-book reading program, and is open to all! The title is chosen with older teens and adult readers in mind.

Author Visit:

Join Allen Eskens for a book talk and discussion at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22.

Attend from home! The visit will be hosted over Zoom and registration is required at:

View at the library: Limited seats will be available at the library to view the discussion. This is intended for those who may not have access to the internet at home. Those attending will need to wear an appropriate face covering. Register at or by calling Samantha at (585) 343-9550, ext. 8.

All who register and attend the author event will be entered in a raffle to win one of three signed copies of the book! 

Community Book Discussions:

Join Librarian Samantha Stryker Basile and the Richmond Reads Committee for a discussion of the book. 

  • Thursday, Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. -- Virtual Book Discussion on Zoom
  • Monday, Oct. 19 at 1 p.m. -- Virtual Book Discussion on Zoom
  • *Friday, Oct. 16 at 1 p.m -- IN PERSON Book Discussion at the library.

*This discussion is intended for those who may not have access to the internet at home and attendance is limited. Those attending will need to wear an appropriate face covering.

Registration required for all programs. Register at: or by calling Samantha at (585) 343-9550, ext. 8.

Review Contest

Write a review of "Nothing More Dangerous" for a chance to win a prize! Two winners will be chosen by the Richmond Reads committee to win a signed copy of "Nothing More Dangerous" and a $50 gift certificate to a local restaurant. The review form and complete rules can be found at or at the library. Reviews must be received by 5 p.m. Oct. 19.

About the Book

Described by Library Journal as a “powerful, unforgettable crime novel” and "a coming-of-age book to rival some of the best,” "Nothing More Dangerous" by Allen Eskens presents a timely story filled with mystery, intrigue and personal discovery.

Set in the 1970s, "Nothing More Dangerous" tells the story of 15-year-old Boady, who wants nothing more than to leave his small town of Jessup, Mo., for bigger and better things. His life changes in unexpected ways when the Elgins – a black family – move in across the street.

Boady’s fast friendship with their son, Thomas, causes him to reexamine his understanding of the world as he knows it. Racial tensions are high in his town after the sudden and ominous disappearance of Lida Poe, a black woman who kept the books at the local plastics factory.

As Boady delves into this mystery and confronts the racial injustice around him, he uncovers more than he expected about his family, his neighbors and himself.

Calling it the book he “became a writer to write,” Allen Eskens began writing "Nothing More Dangerous" in the early '90s and only recently completed it for publication in 2019. A bestselling and award winning author, "Nothing More Dangerous" is Eskens’ sixth novel. Other works include "The Life We Bury," "The Guise of Another," "The Heavens May Fall," "The Deep Dark Descending," and "The Shadows We Hide."

Eskens lives in Minnesota, where he recently retired after practicing criminal law for 25 years. 

Copies of the book are available at the library in hardcover and audio and on OverDrive as an eBook or Audiobook. The book is also available to purchase at the library for $24 courtesy of Lift Bridge Book Shop in Brockport.

Richmond Reads is sponsored by the Friends of Richmond Memorial Library. Contributions to the program may be directed to the Friends.

New in Stafford this week: A Little Library for all to enjoy

By Billie Owens


Photos and information from Amy Swanson:

There's a new Little Library in Stafford. It's at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, located at 6188 Main Road (Route 5).

It looks like those you've probably seen -- a little post-held structure standing upright in someone’s front yard, a bit like an oversized birdhouse. 

They are quite popular because there are purportedly 60,000 of them around the world, in 80 countries! At first glance, passersby might wonder “What is that…?” And then, after seeing a few of these little nooks filled with books, no doubt a few have wished they'd stopped by to browse the titles.

Well, beginning this week in Stafford, you can do just that.

We welcome the community to take a peek at the Little Library at St. Paul’s. Step right up, open the doors, and poke through the books inside.

If a title or subject seems interesting, take it home to enjoy. After you’re finished simply return it, or not.

This easy access encourages a bit of joy -- the free giving and keeping or sharing of books. That's nice and it's kind, too.

The Stafford project initially began as a way to give visitors a place to share books of interest for children and for adults. It promotes family literacy by offering a variety of books, encouraging parents and children to join together to read, imagine, learn and explore.

In our ever-changing world, the Little Library offers bit of safe entertainment and adventure for families who may be spending more time at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Books will be cleaned and held in time frames for safety before being replaced on the shelves for distribution again. 

Stafford’s Little Library offers a safe spot to pull your car into if you are driving by, so you can look for a book and sit on the outside bench and read if you like.

Each week a different theme will be highlighted. Follow us on Facebook as well.

Donations are always welcome as are comments and questions.

Please email us at:   [email protected]

Stafford’s Little Library was made possible through the generosity of the Outreach grant through the Episcopal Partnership of the Diocese of Western New York and the Batavia, Morganville and Stafford communities.

(Editor's Note: As the Peter Max poster noted in 1969: "Be all you can be. Read.")


Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library available to little kids in Alexander school district Jan. 1

By Billie Owens

Press release:

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a set of books beginning with the children’s classic "The Little Engine That Could." Each month a new, carefully selected age-appropriate book will be mailed in your child’s name directly to your home. Best of all it is a FREE GIFT!

There is no cost to your child’s family thanks to the Alexander APPLE Committee. The committee has partnered with The Richter Family Foundation to bring the Imagination Library to Alexander’s children.

To be eligible the child must live in the Alexander Central School District and must be between the ages of birth and his/her 5th birthday.

Beginning on Jan. 1, you may register online at by clicking on the box “register my child” and then filling out the required information.

If you do not have access to the internet, you may pick up a Registration Brochure at the elementary school office, and then mail the registration form to: The Richter Family Foundation. The mailing address is included in the brochure.

Alexander’s APPLE Committee knows that you will love Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and encourages you to sign up your child or children beginning on Jan. 1. A family may register all children within the household, as long as they are age 5 or under.

Batavia Middle School Hosts Family Literacy Night

By Kathie Scott

   On March 14, from 5-7 p.m., Batavia Middle School will host a Family Literacy Night for students and their families! This evening is dedicated to promoting literacy by giving parents and students the opportunity to attend exciting learning sessions led by our BMS staff. In addition, we will be joined by the Richmond Memorial Library's Mobile Van, Literacy Genesee, and Cornell Cooperative Extension.

   The four major sessions that will be offered include:

  • What No Bedtime Story Means… Reading aloud with younger children and encouraging teen and young-adult readers
  • Digital Literacy: User-Friendly Electronic Resources: Website exploration and iPads!
  • READ 180 Overview and Investigation: Sessions for grades 5/6 and for grades 7/8
  • Lexiles - The New Frontier! What Lexile measures are and how to use them with our libraries!

   FREE pizza and other refreshments will be offered along with babysitting provided by the Batavia High School Z-Club for any young children of attendees.

   Another highlight of the night for families will be "Books Galore!" - a chance to select FREE books to take home and enjoy with your families!

   This is a very important community event, and it centers around an issue that truly benefits students and parents. We encourage all family members and students of BMS to join us while we celebrate reading, and provide some helpful tips and tools to take home.

All aboard! New reading 'railroad' to bring books to Elba tykes

By Billie Owens

A unique, free book program -- offered by the Dolly Parton Imagination Library -- is going to be offered to children living in the Elba School District and registration begins Monday, July 12.

It's for infants to age 5 and has been offered in the Oakfield-Alabama School District for about six years.

Imagination Library's goal is to provide every preschooler enrolled with his or her own book collection. The books are carefully selected and mailed once a month to the child until age 5.

Locally, the program was dubbed the "R.E.D. Express" by the Basom-based Richter Family Foundation, which has given away approximately 13,000 books to the program so far. The mascot of the R.E.D. Express is a choo-choo train. R.E.D. stands for "Read Every Day."

In fact, the Richters formed their nonprofit foundation (a 501c3) in 2004 specifically to offer this program in Genesee County. Now, they are eager to spread this learning opportunity to more children, this time in Elba.

"Our hopes are to get to the whole county eventually," Tim Richter said this afternoon.

Dolly's Imagination Library program operates in 46 states, Canada and the United Kingdom. This year, the 25-millionth book will be mailed to some fortunate tot.

The country superstar started this program in her birthplace, Sevier County, Tenn. She never forgot her dirt-poor beginnings. Growing up, she says she could only dream of owning her very own books.

Today, she wants children everywhere to feel the excitement of getting a new book delivered every month -- to keep! So she decided to replicate the program in any community willing to support it financially.

The Imagination Library partners with nonprofits to promote literacy.

It starts the program in a community where a bona fide nonprofit foundation is capable of receiving donations on its behalf. Businesses and other donors help financially support the program via the nonprofit, which supplies informational brochures, handles administrative duties and serves as the liaison with Dolly's foundation.

Parents and guardians, of course, must register their little ones and help them learn to read.

In Oakfield-Alabama, the Richter Family Foundation has funded the entire program without sponsors, but that will not be feasible as the program grows. Thus, Elba businesses and residents are encouraged to participate.

"Get in on the excitement and opportunity to help the children of your community," says Linda Richter in an announcement about the R.E.D. Express.

All children who are 5 and under are welcome to participate and parents are encouraged to pick up a registration brochure at the following locations: The Elba School District Office, M & T Bank, Elba Village offices, Elba Town offices and the Yellow Goose Market.

Simply mailing the registration form to the address on the brochure will enroll your child.  

To become the next reading depot and begin this program in your area, please call The Richter Family Foundation at 585-948-9675.

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