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An RN&R family guide for bibliophiles








Down to a science

Women of letters

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This one’s for the bibliophiles


n the introduction to his book Nevada: A History, Robert Laxalt wrote about receiving a letter while he was far away from home during World War II. Inside the letter, a friend had tucked a single sprig of sagebrush. “Before I could protect myself, the memories were summoned up and washed over me in a flood,” he wrote. “Sagebrush that rolled over the vast plateaus and brutal desert mountains. … Sagebrush growing down to the banks of rare streams and rivers so that the water seemed to be captive in a bigger sea.” This description, which carries on for about a page, is one of my favorite pieces of writing about Nevada—second only to the works of early 20th century writer Idah Meacham Strobridge (see page 6)—and I often find myself thinking of it during spring when the scent of sagebrush emerges as one of the first signs that winter is loosening its grip. Spring is also a season during which I enjoy a tremendous amount of reading. During the other seasons I might get away with three or four books a month, but for some reason, spring always finds me in a contemplative, homebody frame of mind. If you’re like me in that sense, you’ll appreciate this edition of Family Guide, which is all about reading. One page 4, you’ll find a story from Arts Editor Kris Vagner, who was kind enough to assemble a sort of science-reading canon for kids based on books her son is particularly fond of. You can also catch a piece about two Nevada children’s authors from News Editor Dennis Myers, over on page 9. On page 6, you’ll find my recommendations for books from several of Nevada’s great female authors. I also put together a quick guide to story time events and other happenings at some of Washoe County’s libraries, because reading needn’t always be a solitary pastime. That’s on page 10. And I threw a curve ball in here, too—well, kind of. I visited an art exhibition called Expanded Readings: The Book to Come over at the University of Nevada, Reno. It’s on display until March 17. You can read about it on page 11.

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Down to a

science Standout science books for kids


hat phrase about children being our greatest teachers is so clichéd I might as well be writing a Hallmark card instead of an RN&R guide. But the truth is that it hadn’t occurred to me to be deeply fascinated by steam engines or the properties of bismuth until my son Nico, at around age 3, started reading science books and gave his English-major mom a whole new lens on the world. He turned 13 this year, and his passion for science is still a guiding force. In fact, as I was typing these very words, I was interrupted no fewer than three times and implored to witness his demonstrations of how to extract hydrogen from a nine-volt battery. (Put it in saltwater.) Here’s my short list of kids’ science books that have become family classics.

The Rock Factory B y K r i s Va g n e r

Jacqui Bailey and M at t h e w l i l ly

This accessible graphic novel brings geology down to, ahem, Earth by conveying the workings of the rock cycle with adorable drawings and a plot. The story begins back when the Earth was made of red-hot molten rock. The main character is a “clump of material,” who, after eons ascending through the mantle, becomes a “special rock.” We learn how rocks are formed and how things like volcanoes and erosion work. Eventually our hero finds himself in human company. That was only half a plot spoiler, though. Adults and older kids will probably predict the little guy’s true identity before the big reveal on the last page, but younger kids are likely to find the ending a fun surprise.

Life Story V i r i g n i a l e e B u rto n

A book about the elements is among Nico’s favorites. PHOTO/KRIS VAGNER


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Virignia Lee Burton, daughter of an MIT dean and a poet, wrote and illustrated children’s books between the 1930s and the 1960s, taking an imaginative, wide-eyed look at the magic of everyday stuff. Her tiny, loosely drawn people are often faceless, but their gestures and vintage clothing are expressive—even though the humans play second fiddle to the real stars of the show, a snowplow named Katy, for example, or a streetcar named Maybelle. Burton’s storybooks held us rapt through many a third-grade story time, and I’d recommend any of them, but the one we still keep picking up is Life Story from 1962. It’s structured as a five-act play that details the entire history of the galaxy, the Earth and

all life thereon. There are red velvet curtains and an assortment of those classically Burton humans, playing emcee in a tux or a circle skirt, standing in a tiny spotlight, gesturing grandly toward a scene from the Mesozoic Era or the dawn of agriculture. The Mesozoic Era and the dawn of agriculture are, by the way, made irresistibly cute. The inside back cover alone, with its five-story cross-section of a natural history museum, is worth picking up this book for.

Eye-Popping 3-D Bugs Barry rothstein and Betsy rothstein

I confess—I have judged books by their covers. There are legions of corny, boring kids’ books out there, and the cover image, a macro shot of a praying mantis in 3-D glasses, makes this book look like it might be one of them. But this oversized picture book contains two pairs of 3-D glasses and one of the coolest and most realistic uses of 3-D imagery this side of Hugo and The Lego Movie. Scorpions, millipedes and other bugs are blown up to the size of newborn kittens. The detail is so fine that you can see the individual hairs on the red-kneed tarantula, and the 3-D effect is so realistic that a gargantuan housefly looks like it could walk right off the page.

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions randall Munroe

“Imagine everyday things,” Nico said, by way of explanation. “Like, say you wanted to fit Niagara Falls down a straw.” Wait. What? Fitting Niagara Falls down a straw is an everyday thing? “It’s not something you want to do every day,” he clarified. “But it’s an interesting thing to think about.” Web-comic hero Randall Munroe, creator of XKCD, fields hypothetical questions from readers—“What would happen if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90 percent the speed of light?”—and looks into the math and science behind the them. (Short answer: major destruction, but the batter would be allowed to go to first base.) The premise has seeped into our viewpoints. You can hear Munroe’s influence in our car-trip games. And suddenly no one seems held back by the fact that they can only draw a stick figure.

“The reason I like this book is largely because the laws of physics and chemistry allow for some very explosive things, and I find those satisfying.” — Nico

The Annotated Buildit-Yourself Science Laboratory R ay m o n d E . B a R R E t t a n d W i n d E l l H . o s k a y

“The reason I like this book is largely because the laws of physics and chemistry allow for some very explosive things, and I find those satisfying,” Nico said. This bible of experiments is for the mad scientists among you—and it’s hard not to identify as a mad scientist after perusing its range of investigations. I have my eye on “Umbrella Planetarium.” Nico’s already mastered “Hydrogen Maker (Water Based).” Build-it-Yourself Science Laboratory was originally published in the 1960s, and this 2014 annotation, while it does carefully point out newly conceived safety precautions, makes a point of not omitting the dangerous stuff.

Illustrated Book of Steam and Rail: The History and Development of the Train and an Evocative Guide to the World’s Great Train Journeys C o l i n d E n n i s G a R R at t

This book has all the traits that should have gotten it relegated to the thrift store pile—a perfunctory cover design, obnoxiously small type, under-saturated photos, and the eat-yourspinach tone of an outdated encyclopedia. But when I pulled it off the shelf and asked Nico if it still qualifies as a favorite 10 years after he acquired it as a preschooler, he said, “Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes and yes!” What those muted pictures lack in pizazz, they make up for in variety. The text is written for adults, but the hundreds of pictures of boxy, antique trains, sleek bullet trains and trains from dozens of countries have a wide appeal. This book is part encyclopedia, part comparative industrial design and part technological history. Pictures of trains in their habitats—an Ecuadoran market, a Norwegian hamlet, an Indonesian jungle—make it kind of an anthropology book, too. I can’t think of another interdisciplinary combination quite like it.

nv lic #81359 ca lic #822843

The Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe t H E o d o R E G R ay

I bought this book for Nico this past Christmas. Its spine is already worn. It treats each of the 118 known elements like a rockstar worthy of flattering, glossy close-ups. Naturally, a sample of bismuth, with its rainbow-colored, geometrical crystals, is highly photogenic—but have you considered that aluminum has an internal crystal structure that makes it just as glamorous? Each element gets its own alluring, twopage spread, complete with examples of how it’s commonly used—bismuth is in Pepto Bismol—and sometimes how it’s used in Gray’s own collection of intriguing ephemera, such as trinkets his colleagues have made for him or a tiny, cast copper “periodic table” table. The whole thing is obsessively well curated, extremely readable, and at times even funny. It reads like a fully realized book, not like an adaptation of a preexisting app—which it actually is. Ω


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Women of Celebrating Nevada’s female writers


arch is National Women’s History Month. And in that spirit, now seems like an excellent time to celebrate some of Nevada’s great female writers. This short list of recommendations includes a few celebrated literary figures from the Silver State’s past, as well as several contemporary writers whose works span a broad range of genres.


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Idah Meacham Strobridge The dedication for the 1909 book The Land of Purple Shadows is made out “To you who were born in the West—who live in the West—who love the West.” Like so many people who live in this state, the book’s writer, Idah Meacham Strobridge, was not born in Nevada but nonetheless found a home and a sense of belonging in its “golden sunlight and purple shadows.” Strobridge moved from California as a child. Her family settled in Lassen Meadows, east of Lovelock, where her father took up ranching. A 2014 story written by Nina Schneider in the California State Library Foundation’s Bulletin tells how Strobridge returned to Nevada with her husband after college to raise her family on ranch lands given to them by her father. It also recounts how she got her start in writing and bookbinding around age 40, just a few years after her husband and all three of her sons had died. Although Strobridge relocated back to California after the deaths of her family members, she continued to write

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about the desert—publishing three books between 1904 and 1909. In her lovingly detailed descriptions of the landscape and the people who inhabited it, it is clear that her thoughts remained on the east side of the Sierra long after she’d left for Los Angeles. And reviews of her work, like this one from the Dec. 24, 1907 edition of the Reno Evening Gazette, show that the people of Nevada also remembered her: “Even to those of us who did not already know her life story it would be very plain that Idah Meacham Strobridge … is a daughter of those long gray stretches which we in Nevada cherish as a portion of our heritage; and of them we are proud beyond the understanding of the stranger who, because he is a stranger, does not know their lure. … Not often do we commend books to our friends’ consideration. Right gladly do we make exception for the “Loom of the Desert,” written and published by Idah Meacham Strobridge, daughter of Nevada’s deserts …” Strobridge’s three books—Miners’ Mirage-Land (1904), The Loom of the Desert (1907) and The Land of Purple Shadows (1909)—can all be read for free online at

Virginia Coffman According to the Nevada Writers Hall of Fame website, Virginia Coffman was a native of San Francisco and worked as a television writer during the 1940s and ’50s. She moved to Reno in 1956, and by 1965 she’d quit her day job to pursue writing full time. The publication of her first novel—Moura—was announced in early October 1959. Later that month, the Reno Evening Gazette ran a piece by book reviewer and columnist Winifred Olyphant about an interview she’d done with Coffman shortly before the author left for Europe to research a new novel. In the interview, Coffman explained how she thought Reno was ideal for a writer: “As a community it has just the proper mixture of everything to contribute the atmosphere needed by a writer—excitement, the university and peace and quiet.” Over the course of her career, Coffman became famous for her historical romance and Gothic mystery novels—set in the far off locations she visited during her extensive travels. She wrote more than seven dozen books

under her own name and several more under pseudonyms. But her second book, Affair at Alkali, published in 1960, is the only one set in Nevada. Set in Washoe Valley and Carson City, the story is told from the perspective of the beautiful and intrepid Lucinda Regan. Coffman’s style incorporates the kind of detailed descriptions that Louis L’amour enthusiasts are sure to love and mixes a fair amount of humor in with the adventurous tale of miners and cattlemen set against one another and a troublesome teenage boy—the main character’s son—caught in the mix. Hardcover and Kindle editions of Affair at Alkali and Coffman’s other books are available through Amazon and other booksellers.

Terri Farley Terri Farley’s Phantom Stallion series is comprised of 24 books that bring readers into the Northern Nevada landscape—and the life of teenager Samantha “Sam” Forster. The books feature a wild mustang known as the Phantom. And while they were written for young adults, the subject matter touches upon the very real issue of wild horse management on Nevada’s public lands. It’s a cause Farley became interested in while writing a story for Nevada Magazine in the early 2000s. “Nevada Magazine asked me to do a story about the last great cattle drive,” Farley recalled during a recent interview. “And so I went on a 10-day cattle drive, from Soldier Meadows, across the Black Rock Desert to … just outside Susanville, [California]. During the drive, Farley rode a little mustang named Ace. “He was very sassy,” she said. “He tested me every time there was an audience. He would buck. He would do all kinds of crazy things.” As it turned out, her horse’s demeanor led to a fortuitous chance encounter. “While I was on that drive, I rode drag. I rode in the back because Ace had his rodeo face on, and I didn’t like having an audience,”

Farley said. “I was riding in the back, and a cow broke from the herd. And we went after it and down one of these little slot canyons. I thought I saw a white horse all by himself.” By the time they’d rounded up the stray cow, the horse was gone. But the encounter sparked Farley’s imagination—and eventually led to the book series. Farley is also the author of a nonfiction work about wild horse advocacy called Wild at Heart: Mustangs and the Young People Fighting to Save Them (see News, page 8). Her books can be purchased through local and major booksellers.

Ellen Hopkins Ellen Hopkins’ first young adult book, Crank, was published in 2004. Written in verse, the book explores the dark themes of meth abuse and rape through the eyes of the story’s protagonist—a teenage girl named Kristina, whose character is based on Hopkins’ own daughter. The book is largely set in Reno, as are the sequels—Glass (2007) and Fallout (2010). Hopkins has lived in Northern Nevada for 27 years, and the state is the setting for many of her young adult novels. In a recent email interview she explained how life in the area led to the semi-autobiographical Crank series. “There is so much to love about this place!” she wrote. “That said, when my children started school there was a huge problem with crystal meth, which was readily available, and cheap. Unfortunately, one of my daughters succumbed to the lure, and became enmeshed in addiction, something she’s fought now for 21 years. That chapter of our lives inspired my Crank trilogy, which is a fictionalized version of a very true story.” The trilogy and some of Hopkins’ other works are required reading in some high schools and drug counseling programs. The author considers her books “cautionary tales” for young adults, “illustrating how choices create outcomes” and that “there is light on the far side of the darkness.”

Hopkins has also written a handful of books for adults. She’s currently working on a sequel to one of them, 2015’s Love Lies Beneath. She’s also working on another young adult book, due out in 2018. “[It] addresses gun violence. It’s something of a departure because it will be my first novel not written first person, but rather third omniscient, with the gun as seducer/narrator.”

Battleborn and Watkins’ second book Gold Fame Citrus can be purchased through Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Sundance Books and Music.

Hopkins’ books can be purchased through local and major booksellers.

Although Nevada Barr—author of more than two dozen books—did not grow up in Nevadan, she was named for the state—and born in it. Bittersweet, published in 1984, was the first of Barr’s books to be published. It is her only book, to date, that’s set in Nevada. On her website, Barr notes that her then-boss dubbed the book “a neo-gothic lesbian Western.” It’s a story about lovers—Imogene and Sarah—and the struggles they faced in 19th century society as they make their way west and settle in Nevada. The title of the book is fitting—both for the emotions it evokes and the fact that it’s the only in its vein the author has written. Bittersweet speaks to the author’s love of the outdoors. On her website Barr explains, “Because it’s one of my earliest works, Bittersweet contains a lot of the stories I heard growing up near the Smoke Creek Desert” in northwestern Nevada, about 60 miles north of Reno. The bulk of Barr’s books are part of a 22-book mystery series set in the national parks and featuring park ranger Anna Pigeon. Nevada fans of the series have no doubt wondered if Barr will ever write an Anna Pigeon novel set in the Red Rock Canyon, Death Valley or Great Basin National Parks. The author was not available to answer the question herself, but her husband, Donald Paxton, responded via email to say, “There are no such plans in the works, but Nevada loves the West and the National Parks so anything is possible.”

Claire Vaye Watkins Reviewers who’ve read Claire Vaye Watkins’ debut collection of short stories, Battleborn, often draw comparisons between it and the desert—with comments like “The characters were distant, disheartened, sad creatures, dried up, like hollows in the desert where water once stood” or “She writes with starkness that’s reflected in the desert settings.” Many of these reviewers are surely people who have no real concept of the desert, though some are more accurate than others: “These stories convey a very strong sense of place: the desert, mostly, and the weird people who populate it.” It’s not the desert comparison that’s wrong—only the understanding behind it, because, like the desert landscape, Watkins’ work is not a single monotonous, dry sweep. Her characters’ actions and emotions swing from cold to searing hot. And Watkins knows when to paint a scene that’s desolate like alkali flats or crowded with details that sting the senses like sagebrush in bloom. Longtime Nevadans will almost certainly find their own memories of familiar places echoed within the fabric of Watkins’ stories—and this may serve to bring them uncomfortably closer to the gritty, often unsettling narratives the author weaves. But, in the end, it is Watkins’ uncanny ability to bind real history to invented stories that makes it near impossible to set her book aside.

Nevada Barr

Her books can be purchased through local and major booksellers. Ω


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Two of a kind Authors bring Nevada to life through kids’ books

by Dennis Myers


t’s anyone’s guess why, but Nevada has been blessed by a number of children’s book writers. Here we introduce you to two. Ann Herbert Scott, born in Philadelphia in 1926, ended up in Reno with her physicist husband William, who taught at the University of Nevada, Reno. Between those two points, she had a full life of experiences, including working with children at the Elm Haven Housing Project near Yale. Reading to the children, she was often impatient with the books available. Many children had difficulty relating to either the words or the art. She found herself wishing for time to write stories that spoke more directly to the children and featured illustrations that looked like the children who read them. These were the days of Doctor Dan the Band-Aid Man and Nurse Nancy, children’s titles that reinforced the status quo. Scott ended up with the time she craved after marriage. By then, she had a third benchmark to guide her. There had been a child to whom she read named Frankie Brookshire, animated and active as any four-year-old and often bored by the books Scott read. She set herself the goal of writing books for that child. Her first title was the generic Big Cowboy Western. Once it was written, she experienced the first of several pieces of serendipity in the course of her writing career. She met children’s author Marguerita Rudolph (The Good Stepmother, Look at Me). She mentioned her writing to Rudolph, who then read Big Cowboy Western in manuscript and promptly sent it to an editor. Within days, Scott had a contract. The book, illustrated by Richard W. Lewis, was published in 1965. It hit at a perfect time. Society was in tumult, and publishers were scrambling to address calls for wider views of culture. The title may have been generic, but a children’s story about a child of color in a cowboy outfit was the kind of thing they were seeking. It began a long line of books, many with Nevada settings—Sam, Cowboy Country, How the Rabbits Found Christmas, On Mother’s Lap. Scott’s books were aided by the talents of artists like Ronald Himler, Glo Coalson, Ted Lewin and Meg Kelleher Aubrey. And Scott, in turn, helped another writer—Teddy Swecker nee Martin—become a children’s book writer, too. “She’s a reason, too, that this all happened to me,” Swecker said of Scott. During a year in Reno—the Sweckers have spent most of the rest of their adult lives in Winnemucca—in the 1980s, Swecker joined a critique group that met regularly. “And they literally taught me how to work for children,” she said. Scott was one of the members of the group. From about the time she became capable of holding a brush, Theodocia—that’s the first name she writes under—Swecker was into art. She was born in Reno in 1950. Swecker is very gifted. UNR professor Howard Rosenberg calls her a great teacher. She has illustrated two books of her own and several for other

writers, including Reno’s Virginia Castleman (Mommi Watta: Spirit of the River). Sweckers own books have been major investments of time. One of them took her 26 years, the other 10. Like Scott, Swecker learned that some things come about by sticking with projects so she is in the right place at the right time. Her book Ducks Ducks was originally self-published. It is an indicator of her confidence in the book that she ordered a whopping 5,000-copy printing of it. And it sold out.

Society was in tumult, and publishers were scrambling to address calls for wider views of culture. One day she received a phone call from Christine Kelly at Reno’s Sundance Bookstore, which has a book publishing arm, Baobab Press. Kelly was seeking more copies of Ducks Ducks. Swecker had to tell her all copies were gone and as they conversed and Kelly realized what Swecker had accomplished on her own, she thought the book might make a nice addition to Baobab’s list of titles. So Ducks Ducks came back into print. “I like to remind children that they can make their dreams come true,” Swecker said. “My dream came true. People think that you have an idea—that it’s hard to make that idea into reality. A lot of times it is just not giving up.” Ducks Ducks was inspired by one of her children who, in toddlerhood, kept wanting to sleep with her parents and crowded Teddy into the children’s bedroom. Ten years later, it was published as a tale of Pekin Ducks in Winnemucca who, because of their heft, do not fly to warmer climes in winter. One group of Pekins, craving warmth, dog the steps of a mountain lion hoping to pack themselves around him. He wants nothing to do with them and keeps seeking different places to sleep. They keep following him and finally he accepts their presence and sleeps well because he has warm ducks packed all around him. Swecker’s paintings of these scenes show lions and ducks enjoying inexpressible contentment. “The lion doesn’t like ducks, and normally ducks don’t like lions,” Swecker says. “But they have this one thing that teaches them that they have the capacity for friendship.” It helps that the ducks, like the writer, never give up. “It’s not easy,” Swecker said. “It took me 10 years to get it right, get the illustrations just as I wanted them.” Ω


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CheCk it out Library programs for the sociable reader

There’s something joyous about sharing one’s interests with others—especially when it comes to art. People get a real kick out of sharing the music and movies they’re into—wearing their interests, sometimes quite literally, like badges to identify them with the things they love most. When it comes to sharing the written word, the library is a great place to start, and Washoe County’s libraries offer an abundance of programs for book lovers of all ages.

Kid around

Join the club

The Washoe County Library System offers a slew of story time events for kids. Most are geared toward younger children, though older siblings are welcome at many of them. According to the county’s website, “All early literacy programs in Washoe County Libraries feature stories, finger plays, and wiggle action as part of the experience to encourage a love of books, stimulate thinking, and promote feelings of self-assurance.” Among the different story time events held at the region’s libraries are a family story time that’s appropriate for all ages, a bilingual story time and a “sensory story time” designed “for children with autism spectrum disorders, sensory integration issues, or other developmental challenges.”

Do you like books? Do you like people? If you answered yes to both of these questions, a book club might be right for you. The Washoe County Library System hosts several different book clubs at libraries around the region. There’s the SO Very Literary Club, which meets every third Thursday at the South Valleys Library, 15650 Wedge Parkway—and was at last check wrapping up a reading of Robinson Crusoe. If you’re more of a mystery buff, you might want to check out the Mystery Sleuths club, whose members “solve some popular mystery stories” at the North Valleys Library, 1075 N. Hills Blvd., on the second Wednesday of each month.

Visit http://events. to learn more about these Washoe County Library events.

Jog your memory Victorian era novelist and poet George Meredith is said to have called memoirs “the backstairs of history.” It’s a nice sentiment—and one that often holds true. How many books have been written based on the entries in a diary? The Washoe County libraries offer a workshop for seniors called Lifescapes. It’s a program designed to aid seniors in writing and sharing their memoirs. Sessions are offered on different days and times at area libraries. According to the county’s website, additional sponsors for the program include the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and the Department of English at the University of Nevada, Reno. Ω

More than

words Expanded Readings: The Book to Come by Jeri Chadwell-Singley


Guillermo Gómez Peña, Jennifer González, Gustavo Vazquez and Zachary Watkins. According to the project’s website, DOC/ UNDOC Documentado/Undocumented Ars Shamánica Performática is the “outcome of a seven-year collaboration.” It includes an accordion-style book of Rice’s relief prints and typography of Gómez Peña’s spoken word texts, a video by Gustavo Vazquez and an aluminum case that contains a myriad of small artifacts, which are grouped together in little compartments, each with an associated button that queues up an audio track from Watkins. The exhibition also includes two pieces from Heidi Neilson—hardbound books of still photographs that when thumbed through at high speed reveal time lapse films. Accompanying videos show the books being paged through at a faster speed than mere fingers can generate. Also on display is the work of printer Katherine Kuehn. The piece is a 37-foot ribbon embroidered with text from David Abel’s poem “Threnos” and wound onto a spool created by Tim Moore. With it is an accompanying video of Able reading the text. A visit to see Expanded Readings: The Book to Come is worthwhile for any true bibliophile, though it should be noted that the conspicuous lack of interpretive text may leave some avid readers feeling a bit frustrated—but perhaps that’s part of the point behind this exhibition. Ω

The exhibition is on display at the Sheppard Contemporary Gallery through March 17. Visit for hours and additional information.

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hat comes to mind when you think of books? Is it their distinctive, permeating scent— made especially strong when many are housed together under a single roof? Is it the feel of embossed letters along their spines? Or perhaps you only think of the stories within, giving little mind to the physical medium in which they are embedded. A new exhibition at the University of Nevada, Reno Sheppard Contemporary Gallery asks visitors to consider the physical nature of books, how people interact with them and how this interaction might be altered as technological advancements influence how information is stored and shared. Curated by art professor and Black Rock Press director Inge Bruggeman, Expanded Readings: The Book to Come contains pieces that, together, are billed as an examination of “the book as art and the book as a site for artistic exploration.” The interactive nature of this exhibition is particularly gratifying. Many of the pieces on display must be touched to be understood, and it’s these elements that stand out as the most thought provoking. Upon entering the gallery, visitors are first met with a mixed media project—a collaboration between Felicia Rice,


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