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Engaging Methuen Readers


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Calling All Local Teens!

No photo description available.Calling All Local Teens!

Have you seen the Nevins Library Young Adult Facebook page recently?

Even when our building is closed, our Teen Services Librarian, Alison, has been working hard to provide you with many online programs, activities, and fun reading suggestions this summer.

Don’t be left out, follow the NL Young Adult  Facebook page to keep informed about upcoming programs, news from the library, new materials to check out, and fun stuff related to YA literature and pop culture.

Recent events have included Netflix watch parties (links provided), a poetry contest, ongoing writing workshops, trivia, and sign-ups for the Summer Reading Challenge.

For any questions on, or suggestions for, teen services, contact Alison at aasmus@nevinslibrary.org.


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Books to Take You Away

For those of a certain age, you may remember the classic commercial for Calgone brand bubble bath  from the 1980’s.  Beset by heavy traffic, a difficult boss, and a crying baby, a working woman voices the famous plea, “Calgone, take me away!”.  Cut to the woman luxuriating in a bubble bath, her problems slipping away in this moment of bliss…

During this time of uncertainty and stress, my “Calgone” of choice is immersive books that take me away to a different place and time.  Here are three of my recent favorites:

Cover image for Virgil WanderVirgil Wander by Leif Enger (2018)

“Virgil Wander survives a car crash with some speech and memory problems, and encounters a kite-flying stranger searching for information about his long-lost son. Enger explores and intricately layers the feelings and stories of an entire town full of people, each trying to survive their own life-changing experiences.” — Elizabeth Isabelle, DeKalb County Public Library System (October 2018,  Libraryreads.org)

The small Minnesota town in which this story is set feels like one of its quirky characters, broken-down and ready for rebirth.   A touch of magical realism, whimsy, and engaging characters make this an uplifting reading experience.  The audio book, narrated by MacLeod Andrews, is mesmerizing and casts a cozy, homey spell.

Cover image for With the fire on highWith the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo (2019)

“In a distinct, perceptive, and vulnerable first-person narrative, Emoni, a young single mom being raised by her grandmother while raising her own daughter, relates the story of her last year of high school in vignettes and short chapters, trading off between sharing bits of the story and her musings about her life and her future. Emoni has a gift for cooking, and her food, like magic, conjures emotions in people she shares it with. Her teachers, friends, and family are all ready to support her when the subject of culinary arts schooling comes up, but the one Emoni needs to learn to trust is herself.” –Kristina Pino (Reviewed 3/15/2019 for Booklist)

This book has beautiful writing (“Acevedo’s keen, stirring prose reads like poetry and demands to be read slowly”), interesting and complex characters, realistic depiction of a young woman juggling her responsibilities and opportunities, and most important for me, a warm embracing atmosphere.  Though complicated at times, the love between ‘Buela, Emoni, Angelica and Baby Girl, is visceral and I find great comfort in being included in their extended family.  The audio rendition is read by the author.

Cover image for The lost manThe Lost Man by Jane Harper (2019)

“Meeting at the remote fence line separating their cattle ranches on an isolated belt of the Australian outback, two brothers navigate the haunting realities of the isolation that ended their third brother’s life.” (Novelist)

This is a gritty, dark rural noir that vividly transports you to the harsh and unforgiving Western Australian desert.  Even though the outback setting conjures images of stocking up and hunkering down that may provide eerie parallels to our current situation, it is appropriate to the dramatic landscape so evocatively brought to life here.

 

All the titles described above may be downloaded in either ebook or eaudio format through the free Overdrive app.

 

 

 

 


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2019-2020 Nevins Library Book Group Schedule

It’s that time of year again…back to school for kids and back to book clubs for adults!

Do you enjoy reading books? Or want to find new and different books to read? Join one of Nevins Library’s Adult Book Clubs!

We have books in a variety of different genres and topics that the clubs and groups read. More information about all of the Book Groups can be found on our website (with descriptions and sometimes the books/themes we’ll be reading).

And the dates that they’re happening can be found on our Calendar of Events (and even if you don’t plan on participating in any of the Book Groups, go see the Calendar of Events anyway. It’s awesome!!)

Bestseller Book Group – Meets the 1st Tuesday of Each Month @ 7 PM 

Contact Pat for more information.

Thursday Evening Book Discussion – Meets the 1st Thursday of Each Month @ 7 PM

Contact Krista for more information.

Stranger than Fiction (Non-Fiction) Book Group – Meets the 2nd Monday of Each Month @ 7 PM

Contact Tatjana for more information

LGBT Book Discussions – Meets the 2nd Thursday of Each Month @ 7 PM

Contact Krista for more information

Sociable Seniors – Meets the last Friday of Each Month @ 10 AM

Contact Tracy for more information

Wednesday Afternoon Book Group – Meets the 3rd Wednesday of Each Month @ 1 PM

Contact Sarah for more information

NEW-ish Forever Young-ish Book Group – Meets the 3rd Thursday of Each Month @ 7 PM

Contact Amy for more information.

You can always call us at 978-686-4080 to find out more about any of these groups as well.

We hope to see you at one or more of these if they spark your interest!!

Some Great Black History Month Reads

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One Minute Book Review: Something Real

Cover image for Something realSomething Real by Heather Demetrios

Ever wonder what it would be like to be famous? To have your own reality television show? Well, according to Bonnie™ Baker, it’s horrible. That’s right, her name is indeed trademarked. Bonnie™ and her eleven siblings have their own reality TV show called A Baker’s Dozen.  Since her birth, the show has been documenting all of their lives, up until her parent’s divorce. Now, Bonnie™ thinks she’s free of the reality (ahem, horror) show and the paparazzi, until she finds out her mom and step-dad sold their rights (again) for a reboot.

More than just a teen drama book, Something Real deals with mental illness, the rights of people, especially children, suicide, and the reality of it all. 

∼ Samm, Library Page

Something Real
by Heather Demetrios
New York:  Henry Holt and Company, c. 2014

 

 

 

Gender, Sexuality and Identity in Non-Fiction

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One Minute Book Review: Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry

Cover image for No-where but hereIn Nowhere But Here, Katie McGarry introduces us to Emily, who just wants life back to normal. Her mother and adoptive father receive a heart wrenching note telling her that Emily’s grandmother on her biological father’s side has passed away. When they travel to Snowflake, a town of motorcycle gangs and bad memories, her little detour turns into a summer trip. Her father is part of the motorcycle club Reign of Terror, as is his family. Katie McGarry does a wonderful job of creating unique characters and settings.

Oz, a Reign of Terror prospect and family friend, is assigned to protect Emily from a rival club who wants revenge against her father. All Oz wants is to become a club member and for Emily to leave so his world can go back to normal. Neither count on their crushes on each other. As Olivia, Emily’s grandmother gets sicker, Oz and Emily grow closer, sharing dreams and secrets. The developing relationships between Emily and her newly found family are entertaining and interesting. As the story plays out, we discover that sometimes family is as much who we choose as who we are born into.

∼ Bistany, Library Page

Nowhere But Here:  a Thunder Road Novel
by Katie McGarry
Don Mills, Ontario : Harlequin Teen, 2015


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One Minute Book Review: Jackaby by William Ritter

In Jackaby, Abigail Rook, who has recently arrived in New Fiddleham, becomes assistant to R. F. Jackaby.  Jackaby is an eccentric detective of supernatural and inexplicable occurrences, whose last assistant has been turned into water fowl.  Jackaby’s home houses himself, a ghost named Jenny, Douglas, the aforementioned assistant turned duck, and now Abigail. The author does an amazing job of introducing us to the characters while still shrouding them in mystery.

With a string of murders occurring in New Fiddleham, Jackaby and Abigail set out to discover who, or what, is committing them. With the help of Officer Charlie Cane, they discover a banshee who reveals the next victim.  While keeping the identity and species of the killer in question, Ritter keeps it interesting and fast paced, never leaving a dull moment. He leads readers on an adventure with plot twists and even a few things that go bump in the night. It is a great read for anyone looking to be scared or for lovers of lore.

∼ Bistany, Library Page

Jackaby
by William Ritter
Chapel Hill, North Carolina : Algonquin, c2014

 

 

 


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Book Review: 1-800-Where-R-You Series by Meg Cabot

Cover image for When lightning strikesThe book series opens on our protagonist, Jess Mastriani, getting into a fight over her best friend, Ruth. Jess is a tomboy, who constantly gets into fights at school, causing her to have detention everyday. While she sees these fights as justified, the teachers and guidance counselors see them as her allowing her temper to get the best of her. She defends those who aren’t able to defend themselves. This is a recurring theme in the series.

At the end of the school day, after her detention, Jess expects Ruth to drive them home. Ruth, however, has decided to walk home. Just as it starts hailing, they take cover under metal bleachers, and Jess is struck by lightning. Thus our story begins and Jess develops extrasensory perception to find missing kids. She wakes up the next morning knowing where two missing kids from the back of a milk carton are. Jess is an all around strong, kick-butt character who isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty or handle things on her own.

Her story isn’t without romance though.   Her crush, Rob Wilkins, whom she met in detention, is a bad boy from the wrong side of the tracks and is eighteen, two years older than Jess. And to top it all off, he’s on probation. Ruth comically refers to him as “The Jerk”.

As the series progresses we see Jess save lives, almost gets killed, arsons, and deal with her great aunt Rose. The series has a wide range of locations — from her small town in Indiana, to the summer camp she is a counselor at, to the back woods of her town, to New York and a Military base, and to a biker bar named Chick’s.  Jess is never at a loss for words or adventure, almost always with Rob or Ruth tagging along behind her.

This book series is well written, diverse, and without a doubt one of my favorite book series. I would recommend this series to anyone looking for realistic young adult science fiction or wild adventure.

Bistany, Nevins Library Page

First in series:  When Lightning Strikes by Meg Cabot


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New Book Group: Forever Young-ish

Make time for our new Book Group:

  Forever Young-ish

( A Teen Fiction for Adults Group )

In the past couple of decades teen fiction has blown up. Teens everywhere clamor for the latest John Green or Cassandra Clare novel. These books aren’t just popular with the intended audience either. More and more adults are finding that teen fiction has a lot to offer, though they’ve left their high school years behind them. Come and join us for this BRAND NEW book club and explore all that the world of teen fiction has to offer.

This group will meet on the 3rd Thursday of every month, beginning in September.

If you are interested, or have any questions, please contact Amy via afowler@nevinslibrary.org or 978-686-4080

For more information about meeting times and what we will be reading, CLICK HERE for our calendar of events.