The Adoption Process

Kitchens of the Great Midwest has a very unique heroine. Eva is larger-than-life—physically, for one thing; but also in her capabilities and talents, her confidence and her success, and in her attitude that keeps her down to earth, even at the peak of her culinary stardom. There is no doubt that Eva’s experiences, shared with […]

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The Science of Taste

One of the enjoyable factors to Kitchens of the Great Midwest is the change in perspective and narrator that each chapter brings. In the only chapter that is from Eva’s point of view, she is a young girl, experimenting in the growth of chili peppers and breeding for the hottest possible. In her bedroom closet. […]

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Dontcha know where the Midwest is?

Location, location, location. In some books, the sense of place becomes its own character. The location provides a meaning and impact all its own, contributing to the actions of the characters as well as the readers’ understanding of them. Kitchens of the Great Midwest is one such book. The first giveaway, of course, is the […]

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Story Time Survey

Have you attended a story time or a puppet show at one of our participating locations? We would love to hear your feedback! In order to stay informed about what you want and need, we have developed a brief survey. As an organization that focuses on serving our community, we strive to keep our programs […]

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2016 One Book, One Mesa County kicks off celebration of “Kitchens of the Great Midwest”

The 2016 edition of Mesa County Libraries One Book, One Mesa County will present a tasty  lineup of special events in February and March centered on “Kitchens of the Great Midwest,” the debut novel of author J. Ryan Stradal. The novel is a coming-of-age story about an orphaned girl with extraordinary culinary abilities. Mesa County […]

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David Bowie, the Dedicated Reader

The adage goes that to be a decent writer, it helps if one is an avid reader. It was no secret that David Bowie, the galactic songwriter, loved to read. When asked by Vanity Fair’s Proust questionnaire what his idea of perfect happiness was, Bowie matter-of-factly answered: reading. A true innovator and dream weaver, Bowie […]

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Before the Grand Mesa National Forest Existed

Many residents of western Colorado recognize the Grand Mesa as one of the dominant landmarks in the Grand Valley.  It rises to over 10,000 feet in elevation and contributes to the overall beauty of our region. The Grand Mesa National Forest was established on March, 11 1924 but it didn’t always go by that name. In […]

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