Two more free online Speakers Consortium events this month


By Carole Howard | PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

There are two more events this month in our free online Library Speakers Consortium virtual series featuring New York Times bestselling authors and thought-leaders giving live, professionally moderated book discussions you can view on your computer, tablet or smartphone with Internet access. You also have an opportunity to ask questions.

Next Tuesday, Sept. 20, at noon, we’ll enjoy prolific New York Times bestselling British-American author and journalist Simon Winchester. In his career at The Guardian newspaper, Winchester covered numerous significant events including Bloody Sunday and the Watergate scandal. He also has written or contributed to more than a dozen nonfiction books, written one novel, contributed to multiple travel magazines and taken his readers on amazing adventures around the world.

Then, on Tuesday, Sept. 27, at 2 p.m. we’ll hear from Pulitzer Prize finalist Hernan Diaz. He has written two novels which have been published in more than 20 languages, plus many essays and short stories. He also is the associate director of the Hispanic Institute for Latin American and Iberian Cultures at Columbia University. He is known as a dynamic speaker who captivates audiences with witty conversations about foreignness, his theory of genre, literary history and what it means to do research for a novel. 

Please note donations guidelines

Many of you are very generous with your materials donations to the library, and we are grateful. Most of your contributions become welcome items on sale in the annual Friends of the Library Book Sale every summer that raises much-appreciated funds for your library for special projects. The Friends’ most recent contribution was the replacement of all public computers, including those for accessing the Internet as well as those designated to search the library catalog of items. 

As donations begin to come in for next summer’s sale, we want to take this opportunity to remind you about our guidelines for materials donations so that you don’t waste your valuable time.

Material donations are accepted for the Friends at the front desk (not through the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please) when we are open. The Friends are happy to take fiction published in 2012 or newer and nonfiction that is 2017 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Paws to Read tomorrow

Friday, Sept. 16, from 2 to 3 p.m., youngsters from kindergarten through fifth grade are invited to share their favorite books with Muppet, a therapy dog who loves listening to stories, at a free Paws to Read session. This is a great way for beginning readers to build confidence.

Gaming tomorrow

Enjoy free all-ages video gaming on the Xbox 360 Kinect tomorrow, Friday, Sept. 16, from 3 to 4 p.m.

Makerspace on Saturday

Kids, tweens and teens are invited to a free Makerspace session on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 11 a.m. to noon, when we’ll provide the materials so you can build, design and create.

Adult DIY

Join us next Tuesday, Sept. 20, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. for this free session with Diane where we’ll make greeting cards using scrapbook paper.

Therapy dog visit 

Next Wednesday, Sept. 21, from 11 a.m. to noon, you are invited to come to the library for a free visit with a certified therapy dog. It’s a great way to relax or boost your day. The visits will be limited to 10-15 minutes — just the right amount of time to pet the dog, read to the dog or just say “Hi.” This activity is for all ages. 

PALS/GED adult

In response to popular demand, Mark has doubled the number of his free PALS sessions to Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to help with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. No registration is required. Note there will be no PALS Sept. 20 and 22.

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Judy will help you with basic questions relating to computers, smartphones and tablets and also provide assistance in accessing any of the library’s online resources. You do not need an appointment for these drop-in sessions. 

Writing challenge 

A new all-ages writing challenge was posted Sept. 12 on the library’s Facebook page. We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free activity.

Family storytime

Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for free in-person children’s stories, games and plenty of reasons to get up and move. 

ESL classes

Free in-person evening classes take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with 4 to 5 p.m. reserved for beginners and 5 to 7 p.m. for both intermediate and advanced students. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

Library hours

Most of our programs happen in person and curbside service continues. Also, our hours are back to pre-COVID levels — and even more on weekdays:

• Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

• Tuesdays and Thursdays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

• Saturdays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Downloadable books 

CloudLibrary has a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audiobooks for all ages, and accessing this free digital collection has never been easier. You just need to download the cloudLibrary app, answer a few simple questions, select AspenCat Union Catalog for the name of your library, then enter your library card number and four-digit PIN. You are now ready to browse, borrow and read e-books and audiobooks using cloudLibrary. Library staff are happy to help you set up your device if you need assistance.


“The Lost Super Foods” by Art Rude, Lex Rooker, Claude Davis and Fred Dwight describes more than a hundred survival foods that do not need refrigeration. “Diana, William and Harry” by James Patterson and Chris Mooney explores Diana’s life as a princess and a mother. 

Large print

“Black Dog” by Stuart Woods is a Stone Barrington mystery. “The Many Daughters of Afong Moy” by Jamie Ford features a woman taking an experimental treatment to mitigate inherited trauma. “Rising Tiger” by Brad Thor is the latest in the Scot Harvath spy series. “Bruno’s Challenge and Other Stories of the French Countryside” by Martin Walker is a collection of short stories featuring the French chief of police. “Round Up the Usual Peacocks” by Donna Andrews is a Meg Lanslow mystery. “Dirt Creek” by Hayley Scrivenor is a mystery about a child who disappeared in Australia. 


“The Good Karma Hospital” is series four about this clinic in India. “Okja” is a Korean 21st century fairytale with English subtitles. “John Travolta: Greatest Movies” contains “Grease,” “Hairspray,” Saturday Night Fever” and “Staying Alive.” “TNT Greatest Classic Legends: Elizabeth Taylor” contains “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” “Butterfield 8,” “Father of the Bride” and “The Sandpiper.” “Mr. Tornado” is a documentary about meteorologist Ted Fujita. “Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken” is a true story of the courage of a runaway orphan. 


We are grateful to Marilyn Falvey and our anonymous donors for their materials donations. 

Material donations are accepted for the Friends of the Library at the front desk (not down the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please) when we are open. The Friends take fiction published in 2012 or newer and nonfiction that is 2017 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Quotable quote

“The voice is probably humankind’s oldest form of artistic expression ... And singing is the most personal kind of musicmaking, because the instrument lives inside us. The sound is unique to each individual like snowflakes, no two are exactly alike.” — Renee Fleming, American soprano and recipient of the National Medal of Arts, known for her performances in opera, concerts, recordings, theater, film and at major public events.


For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, books on CD and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at