If you’ve been following these spotlights on the authors appearing at the Arvada library’s Books and Bites program on Friday, September 20th from 6-8:30, you know we think we have a stellar lineup.
But in the case of author Michael Carroll, maybe we should make that an interstellar lineup. Michael specializes in space drawings, creating some of the most amazing artwork you’ll find anywhere. His book Drifting on Alien Winds: Exploring the Skies and Weather of Other Worlds  is simply a breathtaking flight of scientific imagination and insight that includes engaging interviews with notable scientists. From lightning storms on Jupiter to the lethal hurricane-force winds of Venus, Michael’s stunning visuals create depths of discovery that demand your attention.
Of course Colorado’s own weather has seemed a little alien lately, so Michael’s next book may keep him closer to home!
Our next author, however, is someone who most definitely didn’t stay closer to home. Determined to raise global awareness about breast cancer, Polly Letofsky became the first woman to walk around the world when she set out from her Colorado home and headed west across four continents and over 14,000 miles—by foot. Polly recounts her amazing story in 3mph: The Adventures of One Woman's Walk Around the World , a humorous, honest and inspirational narrative that encourages us all to take on our biggest challenges—one step at a time.
Our third author’s story might seem to split the difference between Michael’s extraterrestrial landscapes and Polly’s global trek. Alaska can seem like its worlds away, after all, but Naomi Gaede-Penner’s RX for Adventure: Bush Pilot Doctor  brings it closer to home as she recalls growing up in Anchorage, Tanana, and Soldotna. Besides offering fascinating details about Alaska as it was pre-statehood, Naomi’s memoir has intergenerational appeal. How many children had mothers who were handy with both a chainsaw and an axe? Or can say their father was a doctor who made house calls by plane and once had a monkey for a patient? Are you intrigued yet?
The last two authors in this spotlight, Dick Kreck and Wilma Gundy, remind us of Colorado’s own adventurous history and proves the truth in John Lennon’s famous quote, “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” Dick doesn’t need much introduction to area readers, as he was an editor and columnist at The Denver Post for 38 years. His previous books include the bestsellers Murder at the Brown Palace  and Smaldone . His latest book, Hell on Wheels , chronicles the rootin'-tootin' towns that sprang up during the construction of the Union Pacific railroad in the 1860s. Readers may find that delving into that often-sordid history is no less strange than visiting Venus with Michael Carroll.
Wilma is a Colorado native who grew up on the eastern plains and taught English in the metro area for 35 years. Her memoir My Life Without a Stage Manager features both memories of a Depression-era childhood as one of nine children on a farm, and recollections of her adult life. Powerful on their own, readers may find Wilma’s recollections of her adventures as her family endured drought, grasshoppers, and dust storms make a perfect complement to books like The Worst Hard Time .
We hope you are enjoying these author spotlights and will come meet these fine writers and artists at the Arvada Library on Friday, September 20th from 6:30 – 8 PM.