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Engaging Methuen Readers


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Teen Coding Club

When it comes to computers, I like to think that I know a fair amount. I can troubleshoot with the best of them, and I know that Ctrl+Alt+Del can save the day sometimes. However, when it comes to the inner workings of computers I will be the first to admit that my knowledge falls short. The coding language that makes programs work is a matter I have yet to conquer. That is why I find it so amazing when people – especially young people – are able to learn and build creations out of right combination of keystrokes.

Because of that fascination, I am happy to share our new Teen Coding Camp that will be available to teens in grades 7-12 this summer at the Nevins Library. Led by two high school students who have participated and graduated from their own coding instruction, teens are welcome to come and learn the basics of computer codes like HTML and CSS. The club runs all summer and there is still space to sign up! The club is perfect for the beginner and for those teens who have already dabbled in coding.

Starting July 5th, each Wednesday the Coding Club will meet. One week will be spent learning some coding, which will then be used in a project the following week. It’s a great opportunity to really learn and use the codes.

For more information and registration click HERE or contact Amy at 978.686.4080 ex. 35 or nevinsteens@gmail.com.  Be sure to sign up before the classes fill up! I’m so excited to see what will be created through this club!


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Nevins Book Club-Approved LGBTQ Reads

Did you know that the Nevins Memorial Library has an LGBTQ book club? It’s true! Though the club is off for the summer, it meets at 7:00pm every second Thursday of the month. This year, these are the books that we read.

51qgsn2wkwlThen Comes Marriage by Roberta Kaplan & Lisa Dickey       

There’s no better way to capture the drama of the marriage equality movement than in the words of one of the lawyers who fought it. Roberta Kaplan was the attorney for United States v. Windsor, the case that finally defeated DOMA and allowed same-sex couples to legally marry.

 

 

220px-aristotle_and_dante_discover_the_secrets_of_the_universe_coverAristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe  by Benjamin Alire Saenz                                 

Friendship blossoms in the unlikeliest of places – even between a nerd and a jock. But as Aristotle and Dante’s friendship becomes deeper, they may both have to face something important about their identities.

 

onthemove-by-oliversacksOn the Move: A Life by Oliver Sacks

Oliver Sacks was more than just a groundbreaking neuroscientist. Author, bodybuilder, motorcyclist, traveler, and drug addict, this complicated man tells his own story at last.

 

 

51xb0lb0mml-_sx322_bo1204203200_Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross

The Dark Ages was a bad time to be alive in general, and worse if you were a woman. But one girl dared to take on the system through stealth, secretly becoming a priest and eventually taking on the robes of the papacy itself.

 

 

51ekup0xjwl-_sx328_bo1204203200_Tales of the City  by Armistead Maupin

Many people have seen the TV adaptation of Tales of the City, but reading it is another experience entirely. This long-running series, which Maupin famously directed according to the wishes of the readers of his daily serial, is a snapshot of LGBTQ life in 1970s San Francisco.

 

72003Angels in America by Tony Kushner

If Tales of the City is a snapshot of 1970s LGBTQ life, then Angels in America must stand for what came in the next decade. As AIDS ravaged the gay community, forsaken angels call upon one afflicted man to spread a new message to humanity.

 

 

downloadBeijing Comrades  by Bei Tong   

Tumultuous and steamy, this book is largely a mystery in itself. Who wrote it? Was the author a man or a woman, gay or straight, ally or voyeur? No matter what the truth may be, this depiction of gay life in modern China is an intense, fascinating take on a culture in flux.

 

14649555The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth

When Cam’s parents die, she is perversely relieved…relieved that they never had to find out that she had kissed a girl. Then her holy roller aunt comes to town, and life gets *really* complicated.

 


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Author Event: Hallie Ephron

Nevins Library Presents:

 Hallie Ephron

July 10th @ 6:30pm

Please join us as we welcome New York Times Best Selling author Hallie Ephron to the Nevins Library!

Hallie will be here to talk about her latest book, You’ll Never Know, DearPublisher’s Weekly said this book is an “engaging portrait of three generations of bickering, bull-headed, but loving women challenged to become their bravest and best selves.” A little about the book:

Lissie Woodham was only seven years old when her little sister Janey disappeared. They had been in the front yard, playing with their dolls, custom creations made for them by their mother Miss Sorrel, a famous dollmaker. Lissie wandered off for a moment. When she returned to the yard, Janey was gone, and so was her doll.

Now an adult with a college-aged daughter of her own, Lis has never stopped blaming herself for what happened, and it continues to haunt her. Every year on the anniversary of Janey’s disappearance, Miss Sorrel places a classified ad in the local papers with a picture of Janey’s one-of-a-kind doll, offering a cash reward for its return. Never, in all these years, has anyone brought her a doll that could be Janey’s—until now. Four decades after Janey went missing, a woman responds to the ad with a broken porcelain doll.

What begins as a small clue in a tragic cold case turns into something far more sinister. The women in Miss Sorrel’s family may be in danger, because whoever knows the truth about what happened all those years ago will do anything to keep it hidden.

Ms. Ephron is also the author of Night Night, Sleep Tight and four other mystery books.

Copies of her books will be available for purchase and signing. 

Refreshments will be available.

To register for this program, click here.

For more information, contact Sarah   978-686-4080 x20   ssullivan@nevinslibrary.org


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Boston Harbor Islands Pass @ Nevins Library

Sail away to the Boston Harbor Islands with the two-for-one pass now available at the Nevins Library.  What better way to spend a hot, summer day than to take to the sea! Feel the ocean breeze and discover an island–your next adventure starts here!

The Boston Harbor Islands pass is available to all Methuen residents.

Click here to reserve your pass or call the Readers’ Services Desk at 978-686-4080 x16


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Pairing books and music

There are lots of good articles out there pairing books and music. The Guardian has one. So do BookRiot and Flavorwire. But now we have one of our own, and it’s the best!

 

The Stand by Stephen King / “Red Right Hand” by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

stand-cover

Stephen King is a notorious music aficionado, and he often adds soundtracks to his books in the form of music within the story. However, even when he doesn’t, his dark, evocative tales of terror inspire certain moods. The Stand is the tale of a plague and the supernatural threat that follows in the form of Randall Flagg, embodiment of all human evil. Flagg is a master at convincing mortals to bargain away their souls in exchange for luxuries or security, and as such, strongly evokes the haunting melody “Red Right Hand” by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Listen and tremble.

 

 

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath / “Where Is My Mind” by the Pixies

plath04

“Where Is My Mind” is best known for being the theme song to Fight Club, the nineties movie about men fighting masculinity by fighting other men and…yeah, it kind of breaks down once you start to think about it. Personally, I think it would have been a much better pairing with The Bell Jar, where Plath’s protagonist struggles against her own looming insanity.

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood / “Evelyn” by Kim Tillman and Silent Film

51nwvn-wm6l-_sx323_bo1204203200_

Chronicling both the aftermath of a disaster and a twisted love triangle involving genetic engineering, Oryx and Crake will rock you a little. What does it mean to be human when humanity can build itself better? Can we engineer away our baser urges and destructive instincts? Protagonist Crake thinks so, but, of course, the reader – and Kim Tillman – may be less optimistic by the end.

The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon / “Viva la Vida” by Coldplay

history-of-the-decline-and-fa

Most people don’t read Decline these days unless they have to for a class, and that’s a shame. There’s a reason it’s a classic! Rome was the original blueprint for Western society, and we basically still follow their model. Reading about it can be…well, a little spooky. “Viva la Vida” could broadly apply to French, British, or American imperial ambitions, but it all comes down to Rome in the end.

 

 

 

 

 


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Krispy Kreme & the Nevins Library: so sweet together!

The Friends of the Nevins Library have brought back the yummiest fundraiser of the year!

 Help support Phase II of our Nevins Garden by buying Krispy Kreme’s signature glazed donuts.

Only $9 per dozen.  Pre-order at the main desk; pick up will be on June 27th at 1pm.

 


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Bookish Confessions: My Ideal Bookshelf

Cover image for My ideal bookshelfBeing a book nerd, I couldn’t help checking out the delightful book My Ideal Bookshelf edited by Thessaly La Force, with art by Jane Mount.   In My Ideal Bookshelf, more than one hundred leading cultural figures (writers, musicians, chefs, designers and other creative types), share the books that made an impact on their lives.  Not only am I a self-professed book nerd, but I am a curious one at that, so I absolutely delight in seeing what people are reading and what books they have on their shelves.  I find that one’s personal book collection can be revealing and say a lot about their owner. Jane Mount’s colorful paintings of the book spines, occasional objets d’art  and arrangements of the books are not only delightful, but can be very telling as well.

Perusing this book and checking out what inspired writers that I admire, I started to think about the books that have contributed to my life so far.  When I look back on my book journals, I can tell where  I was in my life at that point.  (I wasn’t surprised when I saw that a former job I was struggling with corresponded with reading a slew of books about women who decided ‘enough was enough’, gave up their jobs and took off across the globe to figure out what they really wanted out of life.)

After some contemplation, these are some books I have compiled, so far, for my ideal bookshelf :

 

Cover image for Italian folktalesCover image for The chronicles of NarniaCover image for One hundred years of solitudeCover image for The Autobiography of Malcolm XCover image for Without reservations : the travels of an independent womanCover image for Animal, Vegetable, MiracleCover image for The clutter cure : three steps to letting go of stuff, organizing your space, & creating the home of your dreams

Huh…I’m primarily a fiction reader, but I just listed several non-fiction titles as my treasured reads.  Time to see what my books are telling me!

What titles do you have in your ‘ideal bookshelf’?