April Reading Suggestions
Don’t forget to go “window shopping” when you come to the Library and check out our selection of new books. If you see something you like, just tell the clerk and he/she will check it out to you.
Although we are still just offering pick-up of materials at the front entrance, we are carefully monitoring the number of COVID cases in Westchester. We’re keeping fingers crossed that there won’t be a surge in cases following the recent holidays. Hopefully, it won’t be long before we can invite you for indoor browsing again. In the meantime, the Librarians, Mike, Jeanne, Regina and Debbie, have combed the shelves and suggest a variety of good reads.
Some books are not meant to be read from beginning to end. Some are meant to be picked up, dove into, read for a bit, then put down, only to be picked up again and again. (Think of the child who wants to hear only certain parts of a story—maybe we all hold onto that trait.)
On our “New Book” shelves, these three books jumped out at me. One is fun, one is interesting and the third is just plain laugh-out-loud. You can decide which is which!
The Encyclopedia of New York by the Editors of New York Magazine. This book contains everything you want to know about NYC, from egg creams to the New York School of Poets. Part encyclopedia, part memory book, all fascinating.
150 Glimpses of the Beatles by Craig Brown. Beyond trivia, this book is a combination of ‘what happened?’ ‘who did what?’ and ‘what if?’ and in the end, you just keep flipping from one page to the next.
Is This Anything? by Jerry Seinfeld. A collection of notes and routines gathered since the 1970’s, some famous and some not, from ‘call waiting’ to ‘Superman TV Show,’ it’s all here, very funny and very much needed these days.
Travel (if only in your dreams)
Despite the many limitations to our lives imposed by the pandemic, we can still dream about travelling again, hopefully in the very near future. The Library has many travel guides to destinations around the world as well as those here in the U.S. that provide information and ideas to get you started. For those who prefer to travel vicariously, you may enjoy:
A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle
Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes
The National Parks: America’s Best Idea by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns. An illustrated history
So many of our patrons have shared with us that their powers of concentration during the pandemic have diminished. What a great time to immerse yourself into the short stories of Alice Munro. A reviewer for the London Guardian, Karl Miller, once commented, “But then the whole corpus of Munro’s stories is a memoir, the novel of her life.” Munro treats her ancestors’ emigration from Scotland and their settlement in Ontario; her parents’ meeting, beginnings and strivings; her own presence there growing up, moving away and continual imaginative returns there through her writing. Here are three of her masterpieces:
Vandals (Open Secrets, 1994) Betrayal, love and Munro’s notions of vandalism give this story a lot of power. Munro is unparalleled as the chronicler of second and third generation Scots’ immigrants in Western Ontario. In this specificity, she finds the universal.
The Bear Came Over the Mountain (Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage, 2001) This is the story on which Sarah Polley’s film Away From Her was based. Yes, it is about dementia but it’s also about sexual tradeoffs and finally doing the decent thing.
Cortes Island (The Love of a Good Woman, 2013) This story is set on an island off British Columbia in 1923. Island isolation and privacy is a theme as is the status of the young writer, who lives in the basement under the prying eyes of Mrs. Gorrie, an old biddy with a past.
In Memory of Beverly Cleary (April 12, 1916 to March 25, 2021)
When Beverly Cleary was a librarian at the Yakima Library (Oregon) in 1950, a little boy came up to her and asked, “Where are the books about kids like us?” It was at that moment that she realized, no one was writing about kids playing on their sidewalks and roaming their neighborhoods and so began her long, award-winning career as the creator of Ramona Quimby, Henry Huggins, Ralph, the Motorcycle Mouse and many, many more beloved characters in her over 39 publications. Take a look in our catalog for the dozens of Ms. Cleary’s titles available from our collection.
Some Young Adult novels and Poetry collections (April is National Poetry Month):
Dear Justyce by Nic Stone (sequel to Dear Martin)
Solo by Kwame Alexander
Girl in the Blue Coat by Monica Hesse
Legacy by Nikki Grimes
The Hill We Climb: An Inaugural Poem for the Country by Amanda Gorman
Please check our catalog or call the Library for assistance in finding something that is just right for you.