Opinion

Recommendations for winter reading

With the weather we’ve been experiencing these past weeks, our library patrons have started to exhibit some concerning symptoms consistent with the cold and harsh winter days. We are hearing “I need to read” and “I cannot be without a book” and “the kids are sick of being stuck indoors with nothing to do” and therefore, we have confidently diagnosed “cabin fever” and the “winter blues.” However, there is nothing to worry about; the doctors are in! Your WPL librarians have the cure for all of your winter ailments.

In the children’s department Jo is recommending Giraffe Problems by Jory John to the little ones. It is the story of Edward who feels his neck is too necky. He takes you on a funny journey of trying to hide and disguise his neck. It isn’t until he meets Cyrus, who has neck problems of his own, that Edward realizes how wonderful his long neck is. Won’t your family feel a whole lot better after sharing this book at bedtime?

For the upper elementary, Jenisa has been prescribing The Genius Files: Mission Unstoppable by Dan Gutman. Coke and Pepsi McDonald didn’t want to jump off a cliff, get hit by poisoned darts from blowguns, get locked in their burning school, thrown into a pit at the top of a sand dune, or drowned in a vat of liquefied SPAM. But what are you supposed to do when you’re being chased across the country? If you want to join in the fun, fire up Google Maps and follow the McDonald twins as they get chased from the Pez museum to the largest ball of twine in the world. This is one great remedy for all those kids stuck at home.

Our director Bryna is suggesting that kids and adults alike return to the classic Gary Paulsen book Hatchet to restore their well-being. In this novel 13-year-old Brian Robeson crash-lands into the Canadian wilderness with only a hatchet and his wits as tools. Paulsen’s own experiences as an Iditarod musher and adventurist enriches Brian’s challenges and creative solutions. Any reader will learn new life skills by living through Brian’s 54 days in the harsh wilderness and feel grateful for their warm bed every night.

The teens’ winter blues should be alleviated with Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones according to our young adult librarian Kayla. In this classic fantasy, Sophie lived in a land in which anything could happen. As her younger sisters set out to seek their fortunes, Sophie stayed in her father’s hat shop which proved most unadventurous, until the Witch of the Waste came in to buy a bonnet, but was not pleased so turned Sophie into an old lady. Now Sophie must seek her own fortune by striking a bargain with the lecherous Wizard Howl who lives in his ever-moving castle, taming a blue fire-demon, and meeting the Witch of the Waste head-on.

A classic fantasy, Howl’s Moving Castle takes familiar story line and gives it a new twist in a relaxed and winding story. For anyone looking to frolic through a book, this is the one.

For adults Allie is suggesting you escape across the pond with the quirky mystery, Midnight Riot by Ben Aaronovitch. Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London’s Metropolitan Police but his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit. Luckily for Peter his prospects change he gains exclusive information from a ghost. As a wave of murders engulfs the city, Peter is plunged into a world where gods and goddesses mingle with mortals.

For a bad case of cabin fever I would like to endorse the riveting memoir of Tara Westover titled Educated. This is the life story of Westover who, instead of going to school, grew up learning how to stew herbs into medicine, scavenge in the family scrap yard and help her family prepare for the apocalypse. She had no birth certificate and no medical records. Over time Tara’s curiosity about the world made her realize that her family’s way of life did not have to be her only path. Her first day at college was her first day in school ever and after that she never turned back. Tara won an esteemed fellowship from Cambridge and graduated with a Ph.D. in intellectual history and political thought. I found myself reading far into the winter night.

So stop by the library to get your prescription for this winter malaise. We aim to make you feel better.

New Materials At the Library

Gifts & Memorials

Paint Lab For Kids by Stephanie Corfee, Art For Kids Drawing by Kathryn Temple, Art Lab For Little Kids by Susan Schwake, Art For Kids Drawing by Kathryn Temple, Children’s Book of Art given in memory of Dorothy Johnson by her family & friends

Adult Fiction

Mending Fences by Suzanne Woods Fisher

The Wedding Guest by Jonathan Kellerman

Warlight by Michael Ondaatje

Connections in Death by J.D. Robb

Large Print Fiction

The Best of Us by Robyn Carr

Legion of Fire by William W. Johnstone

A Reason To Die by William W. Johnstone

Return to Vengeance Creek by Robert J. Randisi

Adult non-fiction

The Formula by Albert-Laszlo, Barabasi

The Minimalist Home by Joshua Becker

Craftfulness by Rosemary Davidson

Faerie Knitting by Alice Hoffman

Cross-Stitch To Calm by Leah Lintz

Sewn Animal Heads by Vanesa Mooncie

The Instant Pot Bible by Bruce Weinstein

Easy Children’s

The Wall in the Middle of the Book by Jon Agee

Perfect by Max Amato

Snakes on a Train by Kathryn Dennis

I’m Afraid Your Teddy is in Trouble Today by Jancee Dunn

Just Add Glitter by Angela DiTerlizzi

Sophie Johnson, Unicorn Expert by Morag Hood

Chicken Talk by Patricia MacLachlan

Mary McScary by R.L. Stine