The Library is now open Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 7:00 pm and Saturday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm. Curbside is still available.
The Library is now open the following hours Monday-Friday 9:00 am - 7:00 pm and Saturday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm. Curbside is still available.
 

 

Sarai

  •  anne fashion

    One of literature’s most beloved heroines, Anne Shirley, can be an inspiration to all of us. Although she’s far from perfect, she can teach us a lot about wanting adventure, having a huge imagination, and loving with your whole heart.

    But wanting to emulate a character sometimes means we want to do more than act like her—we also want to dress like her. Or at the very least, dress in an aesthetic inspired by her stories. Since L.M. Montgomery’s classic tale is set in the late 1800s in Canada, it might be a bit difficult to cull inspiration directly from the books. Instead of wearing the classic 1880s fashion statement—the bustle—you can take inspiration from the style of ANNE OF GREEN GABLES that fits better with modern styles.

    Anne is both strong and romantic. While she loves to be in charge, and see the world, she is prone to loving the girlish and fanciful. Below are three outfits that I think encompass the romantic but adventurous spirit of Anne.

    Some starting points: Anne loves to go out and adventure, so she probably wouldn’t wear heels unless it was a special occasion, since we have so many other options that are better for having fun, but are just as cute. She loves to be girly, and she isn’t afraid to be a little (a lot) dramatic. She loves romance, especially flowers, so she’d probably wear florals even when it isn’t springtime. And never forget Anne’s classic wide-brimmed hat and braids—the girl loves accessories.

    Outfit 1Outfit #1:

    “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers”

    Anne’s world always makes me excited for fall—the crunchy leaves, the cups of tea, the curling up with a good book—so I thought Anne herself might wear an outfit that lets her enjoy the crisp air and the promise of a little autumn magic. While the outfit is practical enough to wear out and about, Anne’s romantic side is preserved through the addition of a scarf and a brooch. The field notes are so that Anne can write down all of her wild imaginings.

     
     

    Outfit 2Outfit #2:

    “Because when you are imagining, you might as well imagine something worthwhile.”

    Anne is a classic daydreamer—she sometimes lets her imagination run away with her a little bit too much. She sees the romantic everywhere, and conjures up names to match the passion in her heart for all the things around her. An outfit like this will let you curl up with a good book—or a blank notebook—and imagine all the worlds you want to. The comfy sweater and socks allow you to relax, while the locket and embroidered collar infuse it with a little of Anne’s classic romanticism.

     
     

    outfit 3Outfit #3:

    “It is ever so much easier to be good if your clothes are fashionable.”

    The reason Anne wants her name to be spelled with an E and not just plain ANN is that she longs for the fancy and fashionable. Plain Ann isn’t romantic enough—Anne dreams of a world where she has the most beautiful clothes and wishes to surround herself with lovely things. This outfit will let you traipse off to a museum, school, or a bookstore, so you can meet minds with all the best people—while looking your very best. Although this outfit doesn’t have puffed sleeves, a pinafore dress paired with a quirky printed button-down is sort of the modern equivalent.

     

    When trying to dress like Anne, the most important thing to remember is that you can make your life as romantic as you choose—so throw on your fancy hat, wear your grandma’s brooch, and carry a book with you everywhere you go.  

     

  •  Bookish Halloween

    When you ask a book lover what their favorite season is, there’s a decent chance they’ll say fall. And what’s not to love? It’s the perfect temperature outside to curl up inside with a cozy blanket, a warm drink, and a good book. Anne Shirley herself even said “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers”. And I can’t say I blame her. There really is something utterly romantic about autumn.  I also really love the spooky side of fall. Pumpkins and skeletons, and Halloween parties—but especially the costumes. For the last few years I’ve made it a goal to wear a bookish Halloween costume. Costumes inspired by books are not in short supply, and they’re such a fun conversation starter. I’m going to share with you some of my favorite bookish Halloween costumes for recreating with things you either already have, or can find really easily. 

    COOKIE MOUSE

     cookie mouse

    The mouse from IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE is an easy one. Any pair of overalls will do, whether they’re long pants, shorts, or a skirt. Layer a t-shirt underneath and you’ve already got the outfit. To complete your look with a pair of ears you have a few choices. An old pair of Disney mouse ears will work, or putting your hair in high double buns, or even making your own out of a headband, cardboard, and tape. Draw whiskers near your nose and you officially resemble a mouse. As a bonus, you get to carry a cookie around all night. No one will know if you keep a box of cookies in your bag and just replace the one in your hand every time you eat it.  

     

    ARTHUR DENT

    arthur dent

    If comfort is your aim, shoot for dressing as Arthur Dent from THE HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY. Wear a pair of pajama pants, a white t-shirt, slippers, and a bathrobe out of the house and it should be pretty clear who you’re trying to be, especially if you keep a towel on hand and repeat “Don’t panic” to everyone you meet. And who knows? You might just end up on an adventure of your own.    

     

    MADELINE

    Madeline

    Madeline may be tiny, but she’s mighty—and her costume packs a punch. Anybody who read MADELINE as a kid will instantly know who you are, and luckily, it’s a pretty simple costume too. Start with a simple blue dress. A white collar made from white felt and ribbon isn’t too hard to make, but you can also wear a blouse underneath your dress to the same effect. Add a pair of white knee socks or tights, and black flats. To round out the look, wear a straw hat and a pair of white gloves. You can up the ante on this costume by finding eleven other people to dress up as her school mates, and another person who wouldn’t mind dressing up as Miss Clavel.   

     
  •  Autumn

    The fall season is finally here, and just like you shove your sandals to the back of your closet for more appropriate footwear once temperatures start dropping, it’s time to make room for some books that will put you in a fall mood. Warm and cozy like a hot tea, or a little spooky and mysterious, these different reads match the crackly leaves and foggy mornings of fall.  

    9.30 The Wren HuntTHE WREN HUNT
    By Mary Watson
    (2018) 

    Hardened by years of being hunted each St. Stephen's Day in tiny Kilshamble, Ireland, seventeen-year-old Wren, an Augur, is sent as a spy to the home of the most powerful Judge to try to regain control of the ancient, powerful magic her people once held. 

     

    9.30 We Have Always Lived in the CastleWE HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN THE CASTLE
    By Shirley Jackson
    (1962) 

    Delving deep into a labyrinth of dark neurosis, We Have Always Lived in the Castle is a deliciously unsettling novel about a perverse, isolated, and possibly murderous family and the struggle that ensues when outside forces disrupt their delicate balance of life. 

     

    9.30 Letters to the LostLETTERS TO THE LOST
    By Brigid Kemmerer
    (2017)

    Juliet Young has always written letters to her mother, a world famous photojournalist--even after her mother's death, she leaves letters at her grave. When Declan finds a haunting letter left beside a grave, he can't resist the urge to write back. Soon, he is sharing his pain with a perfect stranger. When real life interferes with their secret life of letters, Juliet and Declan discover truths that might tear them apart. 

     

    9.30 The Rules of MagicTHE RULES OF MAGIC
    By Alice Hoffman
    (2017) 

    For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man. Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair; shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people's thoughts; and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk. From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic, and – most importantly – never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse. The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. 

     

    9.30 A Gentleman in MoscowA GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW
    By Amor Towles
    (2016) 

    Sentenced to house arrest in Moscow's Metropol Hotel by a Bolshevik tribunal for writing a "revolutionist" poem, Count Alexander Rostov must adjust to life as a "former person". For the next 30 years, from his shabby attic room, he strives to maintain a daily routine, explores the nooks and crannies of the hotel, bonds with the staff, and forms a relationship with a spirited young girl named Nina, which deepens and strengthens throughout his sentence. His conduct, his resolve, and his commitment to his home and to the hotel guests and staff form a triumph of the human spirit. As Moscow undergoes vast political and countless social upheavals, Rostov remains, implacably and unceasingly, a gentleman. 

     

    9.30 Raven BoysTHE RAVEN BOYS
    By Maggie Stiefvater
    (2012) 

    For as long as she can remember, clairvoyant Blue Sargent has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys led by Gansey, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school, she's not so sure anymore. 

     

    9.30 In the House in the Dark of the WoodsIN THE HOUSE IN THE DARK OF THE WOODS
    By Laird Hunt
    (2018) 

    A Puritan woman goes missing deep in the woods of colonial New England, and soon must face the supernatural horrors that her people had only imagined up until then.

     
  • Cooking 

    I used to think I loved baking, but that I wasn’t that into cooking. A gorgeously decorated cake piled high with fresh buttercream, or a pie with the most perfect flaky crust—those were the bakes I dreamt of making. I didn’t think cooking was awful—I just didn’t crave it the way I did baking. Every single episode of The Great British Baking Show has made me cry, and not just because it’s the most wholesome competition show ever. I’m just really invested in how a bake turns out.

    But a girl can’t survive on baking alone. Cooking is a necessity. And after a few years of doing it grudgingly, I decided I needed to get excited about making dinner. So, I put Chrissy Teigen’s first cookbook on my wedding registry, and someone bought it for me. I wanted it because, based on her social media persona, I thought it might make cooking a little more fun. I made a few recipes, I realized I wasn’t dreading making dinner anymore. Then I made a few more. After a few months of this, I was expanding into other cookbooks. I was actually getting really excited to make dinner and try out a new recipe.

    I think it was a combination of using celebrity cookbooks, realizing a cookbook is just another book but about food, and that there are some tricks to cooking that make it more fun, that helped me find a new love in cooking. And now, I don’t even need to hear a celebrity endorsement to want a cookbook! Here are just some of the celebrity cookbooks that used their famous faces to make me love cooking.  

    11.16 CravingsCRAVINGS: RECIPES FOR ALL THE FOOD YOU WANT TO EAT
    By Chrissy Teigen
    (2016) 

    The one that started it all. Teigen is funny and relatable, despite her fame. And these recipes are seriously good. I’ve liked every one I’ve tried, which is a pretty good track record. And if you don’t trust my opinions, trust the fact that it’s got 4.7 stars on Amazon. Recipes to try: the cheesy jalapeño bacon cornbread is the perfect side for any chili recipe, and the sweet potato gnocchi is life-changing.  

     

    11.16 Antoni in the KitchenANTONI IN THE KITCHEN
    By Antoni Porowski
    (2019) 

    This might be the only cookbook I’ve ever preordered. As soon as I learned Antoni was publishing a cookbook, I hit purchase. On TV, he’s got such a laid-back approach to food, making it accessible and fun for people who’ve never cooked for themselves. Eating shouldn’t be stressful, even if you’re making something new and complex. Food should be enjoyed, and it should be enjoyed with those you love. Recipe to try: there’s a pasta recipe with lemon, fennel, and sausage in here that made my husband propose to me again.  

     

    11.16 Magnolia TableMAGNOLIA TABLE: A COLLECTION OF RECIPES FOR GATHERING
    By Joanna Gaines
    (2018) 

    Let’s be realistic. We all sort of wish we were Joanna Gaines. The woman has made a career out of having great taste and working hard, and I think that’s something we can all aspire to. Her cookbook is filled with really well-done basics, and some fun recipes with more complexity. But all of them are sure to fill your belly and make you happy. Recipes to try: her biscuits are perfectly buttery and delicious, and her white cheddar bisque is like eating fondue but in soup form.  

     

    11.16 Cravings Hungry for MoreCRAVINGS. HUNGRY FOR MORE
    By Chrissy Teigen
    (2018) 

    She’s back! With another incredible cookbook, Chrissy Teigen has really made her mark on the world of food. I can’t choose a favorite between her two cookbooks, because both are filled with all kinds of interesting and delicious foods. Recipe to try: The blueberry pancakes in this book have cream cheese bombs in them, which make them well worth waking up early for. 

     

    Bonus tip: If you prep every single possible ingredient before starting the actual cooking process, your feelings about cooking might change. Except when making pasta. Start the pasta cooking first, always. But seriously, put all your spices into little bowls, chop the herbs, measure out the broths and stocks. It makes everything go smoothly, and you’ll feel like you have your own cooking show.

     
  • Sci Fi 

    Science-fiction is far from my favorite genre. In fact, for years, I didn’t bother picking it up. I love science but I’ve never been interested in stories about it. Nothing wrong with it, but my favorite books are about people—stories that deal with human vulnerability and the human condition, rather than technology or alien warfare.  

    But a few years ago I kept hearing about a new book that had come out that was blowing everybody away. It was listed as sci-fi, but I had heard so much about it that I gave it a shot anyway. To my surprise, it didn’t fit into the more traditional sci-fi genre, and was instead a meditation on how people handle cataclysmic events. Yes, it was technically sci-fi, but the author approached it in a different way, focusing far less on the science of the situation and more on the reactions of the people involved in them.  

    I’m still not interested in typical science-fiction, but reading different books in the genre has shown me that many of them sort of break the confines of the category and are more invested in the humanity of the stories than they are the technology. Ultimately, these books are asking bigger questions about our world and about humanity, with science-fiction as a frame. You won’t find yourself reading about the inside of an alien spaceship in any of these stories, but you will find books about survival, art, humanity, and hard questions.  

    11.04 Station ElevenSTATION ELEVEN
    By Emily St. John Mandel 
    (2014)

    Station Eleven is the book that first convinced me that just because a book is labelled science-fiction doesn’t mean it can’t also be about human stories. This book weaves narratives together to create a portrait of the world after a flu-like disease spreads and kills huge amounts of the human population. But that descriptor doesn’t even come close to the breadth and depth of this novel. Rather than focusing on the disease and the specifics of the medicine behind it, the author tells the stories of the people before, during, and after, and how humans will push for more than survival even in the darkest of times.  

     

    11.04 When the Sky Fell on SplendorWHEN THE SKY FELL ON SPLENDOR
    By Emily Henry 
    (2019)

    Billed as a mystery alien story, Emily Henry’s latest young adult novel is really more a story of grief, with a touch of magical realism. A group of teenage friends spend their summer nights filming videos for their YouTube channel when one night a mysterious incident makes them question their memories, and what they know of the world. From there, the story takes off and reveals that sometimes people are not who we expect them to be, and that grief makes us react in ways that we might not anticipate. 

     

    11.04 The DreamersTHE DREAMERS
    By Karen Thompson Walker 
    (2019)

    This book is probably the book on this list that feels least like science-fiction to me, and reads more like literary fiction with a science slant. People in a college town are falling asleep and then staying asleep, entrenched in dreams that are incredibly vivid, and nobody knows why. Worse, nobody knows how to wake them up. What sounds like a book that could veer heavily into medical discussions on what this means for our biology is instead a book that occasionally discusses the medical ramifications, but relies mostly on the experiences of both the people who are dreaming, and those who are awake. Karen Thompson Walker delves into the questions asked by the people left behind, trying to piece together the puzzle of why this is happening, how, and what to do about it; and into the minds of the dreamers who don’t know what is real and fake.  

     

    11.4 Dark MatterDARK MATTER
    By Blake Crouch 
    (2016)

    Blake Crouch’s thriller novel is by far the hardest read on this list. It follows a complicated story about a man who is kidnapped by a stranger in a mask before waking up on a gurney surrounded by people he doesn’t recognize, but who know him. The life he wakes up to is not his. He no longer has a wife or a son, and his career trajectory is vastly different. Although the story of “Dark Matter” is closer to a classic science-fiction novel than anything else on this list, at its root it is not about the complex science of the situation, but the harrowing philosophical questions that it raises—how do we know the life we’re living is real at all?

     
  • Juvenile Fiction That Adults Might Like Too

    It’s not uncommon for adults to be hesitant to read books written for a younger audience. Whether it’s because these books are often written about the problems that only children face, such as school, or because as adults we’re convinced that we’re not supposed to read books written for children, the fact is, a lot of readers are missing out on awesome books simply because they’re not in the adult section. I’ve actually found that quite a few books in the juvenile fiction section have themes and lessons that are important for all ages, or are just written so well that they deserve to be seen by as many eyes as possible. It might be surprising, but there’s a lot we can learn from books written for children.  

    1.22 The PenderwicksTHE PENDERWICKS: A SUMMER TALE OF FOUR SISTERS, TWO RABBITS, AND A VERY INTERESTING BOY
    By Jeanne Birdsall
    (2017)

    For readers who love a good foray into classic children’s literature, this book might be a good choice. While THE PENDERWICKS isn’t quite old enough to be considered a classic, it has the feel of a book written by Louisa May Alcott, and should thus satisfy that cozy place in any reader’s heart. It’s got family, hijinks, and a whole lot of heart.  

     

    1.22 Wolf HollowWOLF HOLLOW
    By Lauren Wolk
    (2016)

    WOLF HOLLOW, which has been compared to Harper Lee’s TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, is not a book for the faint of heart. Serious topics, including war, bullying, and prejudice are tackled in this reflective novel. For people who are worried that children’s fiction will be a little bit too light, this might be a good choice.  

     

    1.22 The Inquisitors TaleTHE INQUISITOR’S TALE, OR THE THREE MAGICAL CHILDREN AND THEIR HOLY DOG
    By Adam Gidwitz
    (2016)

    History buffs, especially those of you who enjoy medieval history, might want to peruse THE INQUISITOR’s TALE. Gidwitz takes on a story of magic, friendship, and learning, and manages to fill it to the brim with his research into medieval times, meaning even adults will likely learn something new while reading this one.  

     

    1.22 The GiverTHE GIVER
    By Lois Lowry
    (1993)

    If you’re longing for something that’s heavy on social commentary, look no further than THE GIVER. Lowry crafts a world that she manages to stay surprisingly neutral about, offering readers a frank portrayal of a supposed utopia. The ambiguous way that she writes the moral dilemmas makes this a book ideal for discussion and debate, and a great choice for a book club.

     
  • Roaring 20s

    Chop your hair into a shingled bob, start wearing low-waist dresses, and learn to do the Charleston. But a word of warning—if you’re faking your identity to win back the lost love of your life through fraud and wealth, your story might not end so well, old sport

    Since most of us weren’t alive during the first roaring twenties (looking at you, centenarians), people everywhere geared up to celebrate the 2020s in style. The 1920s were marked by decadence, lavish parties, and making the most of youth. While social distancing might put a damper on some of that, you can still celebrate the second roaring twenties by picking up a book, whether it be fact or fiction, and diving in.

    Books from the 1920s: 

    4.14 The Sun Also RisesTHE SUN ALSO RISES
    By Ernest Hemingway
    (1926) 

    Perhaps Hemingway’s most enduring classic, THE SUN ALSO RISES, is also his most quintessentially 1920s. In his recognizable prose style, he captures the spirit of the expatriates living in Europe.THE SUN ALSO RISES is a roman à clef, and is based on the actual experiences of Hemingway and a group of friends while on a trip to Spain.  

     

    4.14 The Mysterious Affair at StylesTHE MYSTERIOUS AFFAIR AT STYLES
    By Agatha Christie
    (1920) 

    For fans of classic mystery novels, this is Christie’s first use of Hercule Poirot, her famous Belgian inspector. Despite being Christie’s first published mystery novel, it was well-received, and praised for cleverness. The plot involves a poisoning, an ever-changing will, and a mysterious argument. 

     

    Books Set in the 1920s: 

    4.14 The House at RivertonTHE HOUSE AT RIVERTON
    By Kate Morton
    (2008) 

    Grace Bradley was once a servant at the impressive Riverton House, owned by the wealthy and glamorous Hartford family. She is now ninety-eight years old, and for the last seventy-five years she has kept a secret about a young man’s death. A film director is interested in her account of events, and in telling her story. Grace is forced to relive that fateful summer.   

     

    4.14 Gods of Jade and ShadowGODS OF JADE AND SHADOW
    By Silvia Moreno-Garcia
    (2019) 

    Casiopea Tun dreams of living a life more interesting than her quiet life in Southern Mexico, where she cleans floors for her grandfather. She gets all the adventure she could want, and more, when she finds a wooden box and accidentally releases the Mayan god of death, who wants her to assist him on a quest. Agreeing to go, Casiopea is swept into a world steeped in danger and darkness, but full of possibility.  

     

    Nonfiction About the 1920s: 

    4.14 Bright Young ThingsBRIGHT YOUNG THINGS
    By Alison Maloney
    (2013) 

    For those in search of a quick overview of the twenties, this book will be your best friend. It’s a guide to the parties, music, cocktails, and history of the roaring twenties and it’ll help you infuse some of that flapper spirit into your next soirée.  

     

    4.14 The Great SwimTHE GREAT SWIM
    By Gavin Mortimer
    (2008) 

    For something a little different, THE GREAT SWIM recounts the first women to swim the English Channel in 1926. This book, which uses primary sources to construct a narrative of these four women, also gives cultural context to the situation. 

     
  • Book Question

    When I was in high school, the game “Would You Rather?” was immensely popular. It became a silly part of lunch period and school bus rides—asking each other if we’d rather meet this celebrity or that celebrity, hold hands with the cute guy in our English class or the cute guy that we only ever see at football games. Comparisons would sometimes get pretty outlandish, and alliances were created based on our answers to those questions. Don’t even get me started on the Team Edward vs. Team Jacob fight. I thought it might be a lot of fun to make those choices based on popular books. I’ll give my answers and reasoning, and if you want, you can join in by commenting! 

    Would you rather… have Ron Weasley, or Hermione Granger by your side in a fight against Voldemort in HARRY POTTER

    For me, I think I’d have to go with Hermione. It’s a hard choice because Ron is such a loyal friend who would do anything in his power to help you defeat You-Know-Who. But, I’d have to pick Hermione because her exhaustive knowledge of spells, and magical history would be useful in fighting against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. 

    Would you rather… live in Middle Earth, from THE LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy, or Westeros, from A GAME OF THRONES

    As much as I’d like to see more of Westeros, this is kind of a no-brainer. Middle Earth has some downsides, but they’re far outweighed by the benefits. I mean, I could just live peacefully in the shire forever, not worrying about the rest. It’d be an exciting universe to explore and learn about, and I wouldn’t be nearly as worried about dying as I would be in Westeros. I’d definitely be a little sad about missing out on some of the specific lore of Westeros, but I think meeting Legolas would more than make up for it. 

    Would you rather… have the magical abilities of Matilda from MATILDA or Percy Jackson from THE LIGHTNING THIEF

    Another tough one! Here’s the thing. Matilda has some seriously cool telekinetic powers. Would I like to be able to move things without actually lifting a finger? It would certainly make doing my dishes and making my bed a lot more fun. But, Percy Jackson has some of the coolest powers, in my opinion. He can manipulate water, breathe underwater, and can communicate with marine and equine animals, amongst other abilities. Maybe it’s just the fact that I still have daydreams about being a mermaid, but I’m going to have to go with Percy’s powers here. And there you have it! This is a fun, limitless game that you can play all summer with your friends.