Books

October 23rd 2017

It's the time of year when many readers indulge in books about the supernatural, so here's a review/recommendation of the Pamela Dean novel Tam Lin, courtesy of our excellent substitute librarian, Annie Schapira:

October is a time of cool nights, warm sweaters, and scary stories, and I am a fan of all of the above.  However, my favorite book to revisit this season, Pamela Dean’s Tam Lin (1991), is not what I would consider a horror story, although its final reckoning takes place on... Read Post

June 13th 2017
Book covers of Buffering, Juliet Takes a Breath, and Fun Home

Happy pride month, Somerville! We are always looking for new and diverse books to read and and recommend.This month, we asked Autostraddle contributor, medical resident, and comic book enthusiast Lizz Rubin for some recommendations. Here’s a list of her favorite queer books right now:

Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera

Juliet Milagros Palante is leaving the Bronx and headed to Portland, Oregon. She just came out to her family and isn't sure if her mom will ever speak to... Read Post

January 4th 2017

Many of us will remember 2016 as the year the world lost so many vibrant talents and wonderful minds: the novelist Umberto Eco, the comedic actor Gene Wilder, the singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen and completely wonderful actor and human being Alan Rickman, to name only a few. But I was perhaps most moved by the death of the multitalented Carrie Fisher, the actress and author most of us remember as the fearless, defiant Princess Leia in the original Star Wars films. She had other film roles,... Read Post

December 22nd 2016

After just returning from Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok, where it was hot and humid, this New England weather is killing me. I would love to return to a sunny vacation where the authentic food was amazing, Buddhist temples await, adventures on rivers and massages at every turn. If you’re looking to take a trip to get out of this cold and dreary weather, come take a look at Somerville library’s travel books, starting in the 914 section on the second floor of the main library, you can find a... Read Post

October 31st 2016

Today is Halloween, a day for tricking or treating and dressing up, the annual celebration of all things scary. They day is believed to have pagan roots, originating from the Celtic harvest festival Samhain.

Even though Halloween will be over at midnight, you can still indulge your taste for the scary (if you have a taste for the scary).  A couple of options at SPL: The Oxford Book of Gothic Tales or Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane. You could also search the catalog... Read Post

October 6th 2016

The Massachusetts Center for the Book has announced the 2016 Massachusetts Book Awards. You can see the list of winners and runners-up here.

You can request any of these titles by logging in here or by calling any branch of the Somerville Public Library: 617.623.5000.

September 28th 2016

Yesterday the New York Times ran a two-part column discussing whether or not there is a "wrong way" to read a book. The best part was this quote from Doris Lessing:

“There is only one way to read, which is to browse in libraries and bookshops, picking up books that attract you, reading only those, dropping them when they bore you, skipping the parts that drag — and never, never reading anything because you feel you ought, or because it is part of a trend or a movement. Remember that... Read Post

August 8th 2016

This Wednesday we’ll be discussing Linda Tirado’s Hand to Mouth: Living in Bootstrap America, 7 pm at the Central Library. Don’t worry if you haven’t read book. Reading this link and this one will give you plenty of background for the discussion.

August 8th 2016

I’m re-reading The Great Gatsby for the first time since college and am astounded. I remember loving the lush, delicate writing at the time but little else. Now I can’t get over the deceptive, seeming simplicity of  this very short novel that has so much going on it: a snapshot of the Jazz Age, a critique of class, of entitlement, of capitalism, and the brutal clash of dreams and reality, all conveyed in exquisite prose.

Many of the people and a couple of the events in the novel have... Read Post

July 18th 2016

Posted by: Heidi

A new book club at the Central Library on Highland Avenue, for stay-at-home moms’, working moms’ and/or anyone in between is starting up! If your interested in participating in this club, follow this link and vote on your favorite book!

Book titles include:

Me Before you by JoJo Moyes – “They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose. Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life–steady boyfriend, close... Read Post

July 12th 2016
If you want to read a book, but have no idea what book, here are some sources for ideas. A list of the most popular books in the Minuteman Library Network is here. Just be aware that since the titles on this list are so popular, you might have to wait a while for a library copy. Here are the titles that have won the PEN/Faulkner Award in recent years.  The award is given to the best work of fiction by an American citizen in the calendar year (or at least, "best," in the opinion of the judges... Read Post
June 24th 2016
...for June 24: Henry VIII was crowned King of England on this day in 1509. It was the beginning of a turbulent reign, and nearly all of the turbulence was caused by his difficulties in fathering a son: he was only the second monarch of  the Tudor dynasty, a family whose claim to the crown was shaky at best. To prevent a return to civil war it was essential Henry have at least one male heir. In his quest for sons, he married six times, beheaded two of his wives, and took England out of the... Read Post
June 6th 2016
The Library of America is a nonprofit publisher dedicated to producing  durable high-quality editions of the best of American writing. And it's not just fiction: their nonfiction volumes include the World War II reporting of A.J. Liebling, the movie reviews of James Agee, and the four-volume collection of diaries and letters, The Civil War Told by Those Who Lived It. If you want to get exposure to a range of American writing but are daunted by the size and number of LOA books, sign up for "... Read Post
May 20th 2016
Cover of the book The Witchesook by Stacy Schiff’s 

Thank you to all the patrons who participated! 
The books are available now!

May 17th 2016
Don't miss out on the Friends of the Library book sale this weekend! You'll find great books at rock-bottom prices! Proceeds of the book sale help fund library programming and museum passes. The book sale begins at noon on Friday and continues to closing time on Sunday.

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