Engaging Methuen Readers

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Author Event: Hank Phillippi Ryan

Author Event: Hank Phillippi Ryan

Wednesday, September 13th  6:30 PM – 8:00 PM


Hank Phillippi Ryan is coming back!  Our last scheduled event was upended by the winter weather, but we should not have that problem this time!

Hank will be here to talk about her latest novel, now available in paperback:  SAY NO MORE.

A little about the book:

When Boston reporter Jane Ryland reports a hit and run, she soon learns she saw more than a car crash–she witnessed the collapse of an alibi, and now she’s under pressure to tell all to the police. She’s also digging up the inside scoop for an expose of sexual assaults on Boston’s college campuses for the station’s new documentary unit, and is working with a victim to reveal her heartbreaking experience on camera. But, a disturbing anonymous message–SAY NO MORE–has Jane really and truly scared.

Homicide detective Jake Brogan is on the hunt for the murderer of Avery Morgan, a hot-shot Hollywood screenwriter. As Jake chips his way through a code of silence as shatterproof as any street gang, he’ll learn that one newcomer to the neighborhood may have a secret of her own.

A young woman faces a life-changing decision–should she go public about her assault? What’s really going on behind closed doors at a prestigious Boston college? And when will the killer strike again? Jane and Jake–now semi-secretly engaged and beginning to reveal their relationship to the world–are both on a high-stakes quest for answers. Can they handle the consequences of the truth?

Books will be available for purchase & signing.  Refreshements will be served.

To register online for this event, click here.  For more information or to reserve a spot, call/email Sarah at 978.686.4080 x20/

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What’s Your Four this Summer?

Cover image for Station elevenSummer is always a great time for doing some concentrated reading. For me, it happens up at the lake house in between projects. This year, like last year, I was happy to share my “four” in the #WhatsYourFour program for the ReadsinMa program for the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC).  This program is meant to highlight the need for kids to read just four books over the summer to increase their success in reading comprehension tests in the fall.


Cover image for The FiremanI started out reading two novels portraying different dystopian futures caused by pandemics which leave the planet populated by groups of people who strive to keep their families and friends safe and secure. While they were interesting and engrossing they did make me feel the need to take a break and move to something a little lighter so I picked up a thriller by Catherine Coulter, Devil’s Triangle. This is a fast paced novel that explores the possibility of an invention of DaVinci and Tesla falling in to the wrong hands and wreaking havoc on the planet.


Cover image for The devil's triangleFinding myself again in the area of annihilation of the planet it was time to refocus onto something uplifting and so my final choice was Hidden Figures, the story of several black women who contributed untold amounts of hours and brain power to the fledgling space race and the organization of NASA. Along with their story the author relates the coinciding issues of race in the country during the 50’’s and 60’s. This was a great read which is why it was also made into a motion picture which garnered several Oscar nominations.


VacationCover image for Hidden Figures Young Readers' Edition‘s over now but I still have several options in my book bag….thank God for renewals!!  I encourage everyone to visit MBLC’s Read Four website and follow the instructions to share your four. Let’s see what everyone is reading this summer and spread the word of how important it is for kids to read over the summer.  Have Fun!

Kirsten, Head of Reference Services

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Author Event: Peter Swanson

Nevins Library Presents:

 Peter Swanson

Saturday March 25th, 1-2:30pm

Please join us as we welcome author Peter Swanson to the Nevins Library!  His most recent thriller is Her Every Fear.

A bit about the book:

Growing up, Kate Priddy was always a bit neurotic, experiencing momentary bouts of anxiety that exploded into full-blown panic attacks after an ex-boyfriend kidnapped her and nearly ended her life. When Corbin Dell, a distant cousin in Boston, suggests the two temporarily swap apartments, Kate, an art student in London, agrees, hoping that time away in a new place will help her overcome the recent wreckage of her life. Soon after her arrival at Corbin’s grand apartment on Beacon Hill, Kate makes a shocking discovery: his next-door neighbor, a young woman named Audrey Marshall, has been murdered. When the police question her about Corbin, a shaken Kate has few answers, and many questions of her own — curiosity that intensifies when she meets Alan Cherney, a handsome, quiet tenant who lives across the courtyard, in the apartment facing Audrey’s. Alan saw Corbin surreptitiously come and go from Audrey’s place, yet he’s denied knowing her. Then, Kate runs into a tearful man claiming to be the dead woman’s old boyfriend, who insists Corbin did the deed the night that he left for London. When she reaches out to her cousin, he proclaims his innocence and calms her nerves — until she comes across disturbing objects hidden in the apartment and accidentally learns that Corbin is not where he says he is. Could Corbin be a killer? What about Alan? Kate finds herself drawn to this appealing man who seems so sincere, yet she isn’t sure. Jet-lagged and emotionally unstable, her imagination full of dark images caused by the terror of her past, Kate can barely trust herself, so how could she take the chance on a stranger she’s just met?

Come and meet Peter Swanson, and listen as he reads from the book and talks a bit about it.

Books will be available for purchase and signing.

To register for this program, click here.

For more information, contact Sarah   978-686-4080 x20


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Jacquelyn Mitchard is coming to Nevins!

two-if-by-sea-9781501115578_lgI am really, really excited to tell you that New York Times Best Selling Author Jacquelyn Mitchard is coming to the Nevins Library!  She’ll be here on Tuesday, June 7th at 7pm to talk about her latest book, Two if by Sea.

Two if by Sea follows former police officer Frank Mercy, and opens in Brisbane, Australia just as a tsunami devastates the region and kills Frank’s pregnant wife and her entire family.  In the aftermath, Frank rescues a little boy from drowning.  Even though he knows it’s wrong, he keeps the little boy and brings him home to his family’s horse farm in Wisconsin.  As he gets to know the boy he names Ian, he realizes that there is something special about him.  Also that there are people who are after Ian, and are not afraid to injure or kill to get him.

I have been fortunate enough to have seen Jacquelyn Mitchard speak twice now, and she is so funny and entertaining!  She really knows how to tell a great story.  Ms. Mitchard is also the author of The Deep End of the Ocean, which you may remember as the first book chosen for Oprah’s Book Club and was also made into a movie starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Treat Williams.

This is sure to be a great event.  Call the main desk or register through the calendar of events at to reserve your free seat.   Copies of Ms. Mitchard’s books will also be available for purchase at the event.

See you there!


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Internet Privacy…in the Library!

Even computer experts can’t agree on Internet privacy, and no wonder: one person’s Facebook feed is another’s privacy nightmare. If you’re trying to sort it out for yourself, why not start with these nice, safe, paper-bound library books? We don’t track your usage and libraries have historically protected their patrons’ right to privacy, too! Unless you’d prefer to read them on your Kindle, of course. That is probably a little more convenient. But then, well, don’t blame us when your relationship with gets a little more awkward.


1538975Dragnet Nation: a quest for privacy, security, and freedom in a world of relentless surveillance by Julia Angwin

Ever notice how Amazon’s suggestions and Facebook’s banner ads seem to be spookily tailored to your online experience? Julia Angwin did. To try and shake the digital eyes watching her, she embarked on a personal experiment intended to remove her from online tracking, cell phone location tracking, and even tracking by the federal government.


1595002Data and Goliath:the hidden battles to capture your information and control your world by Bruce Schneier

If Dragnet Nation made you paranoid, then brace yourself for this sweeping expose. This book’s main strength is that it highlights how privacy violators get most of their power: we give it to them ourselves.


1375899This Machine Kills Secrets: how Wikileakers, cypherpunks, and hacktivists aim to free the world’s information by Andy Greenberg

Privacy isn’t just a concern for the little guy: whole governments have been destabilized due to the increasing proliferation of leaks. From Edward Snowden to Anonymous, this is the book that tells you about how the Internet gets the really big secrets.


1537182Privacy in the Age of Big Data: recognizing threats, defending your data, and protecting your family by Theresa Payton and Theodore Claypoole

Now that you know what’s out there, it’s time to fight back! Can online couponing open you up to privacy violations? What political action can a person take to protect their privacy? It’s all here for newbies and experienced activists alike!

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Ve a Leer!

It’s that time of year again: birds are singing, grass is growing, and Cinco de Mayo has arrived to commemorate the unlikely Mexican victory over French forces in the Battle of Puebla! And how better to celebrate this victory than to celebrate Mexico in literature? Try these titles for a taste of Mexican culture, setting, and heritage.


51Ni1xAdyGLMexico by James Michener

The King of Epics turns his pen to Mexico, covering 1,500 years of history. As a journalist delves into the story of two rival matadors, he discovers the deep dichotomies in Mexican life. From Spanish and Indian descendants to prehistoric and modern religious edifices and even the strain between Mexico and the U.S., this book celebrates the complexities of Mexican society and culture.


1182863The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver

Full of political commentary, this popular book by a bestselling author follows Harrison William Shepard, who moves between the U.S. and Mexico in his support for communism. With cameos by Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera!


943862The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea

Teresita, sixteen and already gifted in the medicinal arts, rises from the dead with the supernatural power to heal. Declared the “Saint of Cabora” despite the Catholic Church declaring her a heretic, she quickly becomes caught up in the Mexican Civil War. Can her powers heal a nation from the wounds of war, genocide, and prejudice?


1573983The House of Wolfe by James Carlos Blake

When a wedding party is kidnapped in Mexico City, El Galâan, the perpetrator, demands a ransom of $5 million U.S. dollars, to be paid within 24 hours. But whether or not the gangster gets his cash, the wealthy family knows that the hostages will probably not survive. Enter Rudy and Frank: fixers with experience in crime on the U.S./Mexico border. This author’s work has been called “border noir!”


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There once was a rhyming blog post…

Every March, we librarians dread,

With foreboding and scratching of head,

What new Irish book

Will make patrons look?

Maybe limericks can do it instead!



mv5bmtg3ndg0nju5of5bml5banbnxkftztcwmjawmjiymq-_v1_sx640_sy720_Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

As a child, young Frank was so poor

That anyone probably had more

His lazy, drunk dad

Spent all that they had

But left him with stories galore



51vbtiu7kelIn the Woods by Tana French

Detective Rob Ryan is good

But when a little girl dies in a wood

He has to, at last,

Revisit his past

And the scars of his own childhood.



dubliners-james-joyceDubliners by James Joyce

This classic is wrought in short stories

Which makes it a winner for sheer ease,

But if you want more,

There is plenty in store

For a challenge, try reading Ulysses!



41977Circle of Friends by Maeve Binchy

When four friends venture out into Dublin,

Their bond seems to be for thick or thin.

When ambition makes cracks,

They do things they’d take back

And each of them learns a great lesson.



13928Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

In order to save her six brothers,

Young Sorcha may speak to no other.

The magical curse,

And danger much worse,

Is the work of her evil stepmother.



51pmenuyngl-_sy344_bo1204203200_A Star Called Henry by Roddy Doyle

Though some might consider him bad,

Boy Henry is still quite a lad.

His Ireland’s gritty

But the book is so witty

If you read it, we’re sure you’ll be glad!



60822Haunted Ground by Erin Hart

A head is found sunk in the peat

In a village that seems awfully sweet

Could be the head’s old

And the case has gone cold,

Or a murderer could stalk the streets.


Also watch:

Angela’s Ashes starring Emily Watson

The Boxer starring Daniel Day-Lewis

Circle of Friends starring Colin Firth

The Commitments starring Angeline Ball

Once starring Markéta Irglová


Also listen:

Water from the Well by The Chieftains

The High Kings by The High Kings

Hill of Thieves by Cara Dillon