Library Column for February 16, 2024

@ Your Library

Our 2024 alphabet reading challenge is to encourage everyone to read/listen to at least 26 books over the course of the year. If you haven’t picked up your challenge sheet, we still have copies available. Last month I talked about some of the authors to explore with some of the more difficult letters. This month let’s explore topics or genres that might fit some of those letters that might be more challenging. (Again, the point of this challenge is to read/listen to 26 books over the course of the year. Be creative with your alphabet, you can mix and match authors, titles, topics, use a first name, last name or last word of the title. I don’t care, I just want to encourage you to read and explore what the library can offer you).

Kids love to learn jokes and it is an important skill to learn to tell a joke. We have a variety of joke books for kids. For adults I recommend Springfield confidential by Mike Reiss for jokes, secrets and outright lies from a lifetime of writing for The Simpsons. Another book to try would The Truth (with jokes) by Al Franken. If sports are an interest try Can I Keep My Jersey? by Paul Shirley who spent four years with eleven different teams in five countries playing professional basketball. Kids who think they like to be scared might find The Jersey Devil by Madeline King fascinating as it looks for the cryptid creature from New Jersey.

Louise Erdrich wrote the beautiful  book The Beet Queen which is now available to listen on Playaway as well as in print. The Queen of Dirt Island by Donal Ryan has received a lot of buzz for its portrayal of women in County Tipperary, Ireland. Or if you prefer non-fiction try Queen of Our Times by Robert Hardman. A Quiet Life by Ethan Joella celebrates humanity in the midst of uncertainty, which is always these days. Emily Dickinson’s poetry and life are celebrated in Quiet Fire by Carol Dommermuth-Costa. Or seek your own quiet about a town with no tech by law in The Quiet Zone by Stephen Kurczy.

A book I love to recommend will easily fit into the topic of x-rays is Inside In. The book has wonderful pictures of the insides of a variety of animals with explanatory text. This would be a great book for the whole family to pour over.

A delightful picture book is Detective Zebra and the Mystery of the Missing Tarts by Gill McLean. The first woman zookeeper at the Bronx zoo is celebrated in Cubs in the Tub by Candace Fleming and Don Winslow has a short story collection called Broken which includes a story called “The San Diego Zoo.”

The library will be closed on Monday, February 19 in observance of Presidents’ Day. We’ll be ready to serve you Tuesday – Saturday that week. Regular hours are Monday – Wednesday 10am – 8pm, Thursday and Friday 10am  –  6pm and Saturday 10am – 3pm.

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