Library kicks off summer reading program

By Ryan Cornell

NEW MARKET — Beverly White-Adams still gets chills telling the story.

She was walking along a cliff with her 11-year-old border terrier, Rusty, when she saw him slide over a boulder.

“I thought he fell down a chasm and I ran,” she said. “He was between the two boulders and didn’t have a care in the world. I was a wreck until I found out he was okay.”

It’s experiences like these that have filled up the pages of her “The Adventures of Rusty” series, a set of four children’s books written in Rusty’s perspective that follow their travels through Virginia, Maryland, Maine and Tennessee.

In the first book, Rusty, White-Adams and her husband, Peter, visit sites in Virginia such as Williamsburg, Newport News, the house of John Rolfe and cross 14 different pedestrian bridges.

White-Adams read the book to 16 children at the New Market Area Library on Monday morning, which marked the kick-off event for the library’s “Paws to Read” summer reading program.

The kids were able to meet the star and “cowriter” of the books, Rusty, and feed him treats.

White-Adams said they rescued Rusty nearly a decade ago from the Capital District Humane Association in upstate New York, where they live.

“We had just lost our one dog and I saw a flyer up, and I saw his little face and it said, ‘Rusty lost again,’ and it told the sad story about how he had no home,” she said.

She said she did a lot of writing in her previous career as a probation officer, but didn’t start writing for fun until two years ago when a friend suggested she write about Rusty.

“I might as well start writing about what I love,” she said. “Because there’s no sense taking on a topic that you’re not going to enjoy, so this way you do what you love.”

She and her husband have two other rescue dogs: a Jack Russell Terrier named Layla and a Cairn Terrier named Ollie.

Each of the four books in the Adventures of Rusty series has been added to the New Market Area Library. White-Adams said she plans to publish books about their adventures in Massachusetts, New York and Wisconsin next.

Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rcornell@nvdaily.com