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December 2021 Newsletter

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New and Coming Soon to the Library...


See a book that looks interesting? Let us know if you'd like your name added to the hold list! For more information about the materials on order, check the Coming Soon page on our website.
 
Book Covers for December 2021 Adult Fiction & Mystery
Book Covers for Dec 2021 Nonfiction
Book Cover for Dec 2021 Poetry
Book Covers for Dec 2021 Large Print
Book Covers for Dec 2021 Audiobooks
DVD Covers for December 2021 DVDs
Book Covers for Dec 2021 Young Adult
Book Cover for Dec 2021 Middle Grade
Book Cover for Dec 2021 Early Reader
Book Cover for Preordered Books for January - March 2022
Hello, folks!

New color scheme; what do you think? 

We're more than a full week into December and I'm still looking at the calendar with surprise (and perhaps a little betrayal - it's not just me that feels like it's still kind of the 90th week of March 2020, right?)

However, despite my desire to hibernate with my fluffy blankets and my TBR (to be read list) until the weather warms back up, work continues apace here at the Library! We're still busy with take-home projects for kids (sled ornaments this week, tealight snowmen next week!), book clubs, scheduling groups in the Community Conference Room (we've had everyone from a Dungeons & Dragons gaming group to the Garden Club working on the Knox Museum holiday decorations recently), planning future programs, and the perpetual work of maintaining the collection. It's very fulfilling work and we're happy to be here doing it. 

You've likely recently received the Annual Appeal letter from the Friends of the Thomaston Public Library, and we are very thankful to all of our supporters. If you have not already sent in a donation, now is the time for year-end contributions! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Library. The Friends of the TPL is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by the law.

Not to bury the lede, but I am also thrilled to share that we were recently awarded a grant from the Association of Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) to upgrade our public access computers! Very soon, we will be replacing our eight outdated desktop computers with four new desktops and four laptops. This grant is made possible by ARSL through the generosity of a regional partner foundation. ARSL builds strong communities through professional development and elevating the impact of rural and small libraries. ARSL recognizes the uniqueness of small and rural libraries and is committed to providing an environment that encourages excellence within this community of practice, supporting their goals of service and speaking on behalf of this important constituency. Since 1 in 3 public libraries in the U.S. serve a population of fewer than 2,500 people, there is a great opportunity to support this set of library professionals that are often overlooked. ARSL believes in the value of rural and small libraries and strives to create resources and services that address national, state, and local priorities for libraries situated in rural communities. 

Best,

Caroline

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Holiday Closings

 

The Library will be closed from 5 PM on Thursday, December 23 and reopening at 11 AM on Monday, December 27 for our usual hours. We will also be closed from 2 PM on Friday, December 31 and reopening at 11 AM on Monday, January 3 for our usual hours. Have safe and happy holidays!

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Senior Exercise Class

 

Join us for our free Senior Exercise Class with Sandy Bodamer from the YMCA from 11 to 11:45 AM on Tuesdays and Thursdays in the gym (downstairs from the Library). The exercises focus on standing and chair routines using light weights, resistance bands, and small fitness balls, and are easily adaptable to all fitness levels. We follow the CDC’s COVID guidelines to keep the class safe by allowing for plenty of social distancing in the gym and requiring masks.

Sandy Bodamer began her career at the Pen Bay YMCA when she moved to Maine from Pittsburgh. Her love of fitness and working with others has kept her at the Y for over 20 years. She loves working with the Active Older Adult population, helping to improve the quality of health and wellness through her classes and outreach in the community.  
 
This class is generously underwritten by the Friends of the Thomaston Public Library, and everyone is welcome to join. There is no charge but donations are gratefully accepted at the Library.

We also offer recordings of the classes online if you would prefer to follow along from home. Contact us at library@thomastonmaine.gov to be added to the email list!

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Book Clubs!

December 14: Let's Talk About It Book Club


The Let's Talk About It Book Club is in between discussion series at the moment, so the group will be having an informal meeting on December 14 at 2 PM in the Community Conference Room. We will share what we've been reading recently as well as decide on the theme of our next series. 


The Let’s Talk About It Book Club was born of a Maine Humanities Council-sponsored discussion series at Thomaston Public Library several years ago and meets the second Tuesday of every month to read and discuss a set of five to six books grouped around a common theme. For more information about this or any of the book clubs, please contact us at (207) 354-2453 or library@thomastonmaine.gov.

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December 21: Intergenerational Book Club


The IGBC will have a hybrid meeting on December 21 at 2:30 PM in the Community Conference Room and on Zoom to discuss The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett.
 
From the publisher:
 
"The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it’s not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it’s everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Many years later, one sister lives with her black daughter in the same southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for white, and her white husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters’ storylines intersect?

"Weaving together multiple strands and generations of this family, from the Deep South to California, from the 1950s to the 1990s, Brit Bennett produces a story that is at once a riveting, emotional family story and a brilliant exploration of the American history of passingLooking well beyond issues of race, The Vanishing Half considers the lasting influence of the past as it shapes a person’s decisions, desires, and expectations, and explores some of the multiple reasons and realms in which people sometimes feel pulled to live as something other than their origins.

"As with her New York Times-bestselling debut The Mothers, Brit Bennett offers an engrossing page-turner about family and relationships that is immersive and provocative, compassionate and wise."


On the third Tuesday of every month, the Intergenerational Book Club, a group of men and women of all ages from Thomaston and from surrounding communities, comes together to share their opinions and ideas about the book selection. Titles include fiction, biography and other non-fiction, Maine authors and subjects, adult and young adult levels. All are welcome to join. These meetings have recently been hybrid, both online and in-person, so folks are welcome to join from anywhere, not just Thomaston!
 
We're taking suggestions for the 2022 book list! Email Caroline at cwardnesbit@thomastonmaine.gov if you have recommendations.

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January 6: Mystery Book Club


The Mystery Book Club will meet on Thursday, January 6 at 2 PM in the Community Conference Room. Our December selection, The Reckoning by Rennie Airth, was such as success, we decided to go back to read the first in the series and will be discussing River of Darkness.
 
From the publisher:
 
“It’s the tactics and the terrain, the morale and the characters that make the difference between an average thriller and one as good as this.”—The New York Times Book Review

"Upon its original publication, River of Darkness awed readers who look for intelligent, well-plotted psychological mysteries. This “fine, frightening piece of work” (Kirkus Reviews) introduces inspector John Madden who, in the years following World War I, is sent to a small village to investigate a particularly gruesome attack. The local police dismiss the slaughter as a botched robbery, but Madden detects the signs of a madman at work. With the help of Dr. Helen Blackwell, who introduces him to the latest developments in criminal psychology, Madden sets out to identify and capture the killer, even as the murderer sets his sights on his next innocent victims."


The Mystery Book Club meets on the first Thursday of every month. February's book selection will be decided at the January meeting. For more information about this or any of the book clubs, please contact us at (207) 354-2453 or library@thomastonmaine.gov.

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January 20: Pop-Up Book Club

The Pop-Up Book Club is taking December off but will be meeting on January 20 at 2 PM to discuss books by English novelist Mary Wesley. 

Mary Wesley did not write her first novel for adults until she was 71, but went on to publish 10 bestsellers.

From the publisher for her most well-known book, The Camomile Lawn:

"Escape to the Cornish cliffs in the dizzying heat of August 1939, where five cousins are making the most of the last summer of their youth.

"Oliver is just back from the Spanish Civil War and world-weary at only nineteen. Calypso is gorgeous, utterly selfish and determined to marry for money. Polly and Walter, brother and sister, play their cards close to their chests. Then there's little Sophie, who nobody loves. Soon the world will be swept into war again and the five cousins will enter a whirligig of sex, infidelity, love and loss, but for now they have one last, gaspingly hot summer at the house by the cliffs with the camomile lawn.

"A beloved bestseller from an author ahead of her time, The Camomile Lawn is a waspishly witty, devil-may-care delight."

The Pop-Up Book Club began as a limited series book group meeting outside during the warmer months at Thomaston Public Library to discuss light-hearted reads and share yummy snacks.  We've been having too much fun to stop and decided to continue meeting indoors in the Community Conference Room during the colder months on the third Thursday of the month at 2 PM. Snacks will resume when the weather warms up and we can be outdoors, or when masks are no longer needed at the Library! 

All are welcome to join!

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On Display at the Library

Patron Favorites


This month, we want to know what you've read and loved! Our display in the main room is empty stands, waiting to be filled with your favorite books. We also have post-its available if you'd like to add your name or why you're recommending the book. Share your bookish loves!

 

Staff Picks


In the same vein, we're sharing some of our favorite books in the reading room. It's so fun to see how widely our staff reads, so I think we can safely say there's something on this display for everyone! Check it out today.


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What We're Reading & Recommending

Caroline: I haven't finished it yet (hopefully the ending doesn't let me down!), but I am enjoying Liane Moriarty's latest, Apples Never Fall. Moriarty excels at twisty domestic thrillers, and this is a great example. One night a stranger named Savannah, bleeding after a fight with her boyfriend, knocks on the door of retired tennis coaches Joy and Stan Delaney. The Delaneys are happy to take her in and show her the kindness she seems to desperately need. The four adult Delaney children, however, are suspicious that Savannah may not be all she appears to be. A year later, Joy goes missing, and Stan is the most obvious suspect. Two of the Delany children think their father is innocent, but two of them aren't so sure. They will all have to reexamine their family history in a new light, but is Savannah involved somehow as well? Request it today to find out!
Missy recommends The Godmothers by Camille Aubray. Speaking of Liane Moriarty, the publisher describes this book as "Big Little Lies set in World War II era Greenwich Village!" The Godmothers are four women who married into an elegant, prosperous Italian family, and are then forced to take charge of the "family business" when their husbands leave for the war. They refuse to imitate the world of men, even as they must deal with notorious gangsters who run the streets of New York. Sound intriguing? Check it out!
 
Caitlin has found us a new manga series. She says: O Maidens, in Your Savage Season is a manga unlike anything I’ve read before. It follows first-year high school student Kazusa as she makes new friends in the literature club, as well as navigating high school’s new politics and what it means to come of age. We have strong female friendships, and we even see the narrative address sexual harassment, especially with “beautiful” girls. Girls who aren’t even 16 yet. Ugh. I haven’t seen a manga take on the very real issues that this one does, and I’m really excited to be adding it to the collection next year! Let us know if you'd like your name on the hold list when the first book arrives!
Blake recommends The Book of Lost Names by Kristin Harmel, which is historical fiction inspired by a true story about a young woman with a talent for forgery who helps hundreds of Jewish children flee the Nazis, but also must find a way to preserve the names and identities of the children who are too young to remember who they really are. A must-read for fans of The Lost Girls of Paris or The Alice Network. Request it today!
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