Saturday, December 29, 2012

Happy New Year from the Worthington Library!

To ring in the New Year, we have new books on our shelves.  This week's selection includes Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya's The Watch.  Here is a review:

The Watch       
By Joydeep Roy Bhattacharya
   The Barnes and Noble website calls The Watch a "heartbreaking and haunting novel" and I could find no better adjectives to convey the quiet, and then not so quiet, intensity of the story. It takes place at a lonely and isolated base in Kandahar. After a battle, a woman with no feet shows up, pushing herself along in a cart by her hands and stops outside the base demanding the body of her brother so she can bury him. She ultimately becomes a pivotal force as the soldiers and those in charge become annoyed, then confused, then angered by her presence and her persistence. First they think she is a spy; or maybe she is what she says she is; or maybe she is hiding a bomb. The inmates of this base, for they are imprisoned in their fort, end up stymied by what to do and not just because her brother's body is being held to be shipped out and displayed on television.  The voices of the different soldiers as they confront this anomaly, as their nerves and consciences get more provoked, offer a disturbing slice of the need to become less humane in order to survive as a soldier.

For the younger set, we have Chris Colfer's The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell.

This fantasy, aimed at the tween age group, written by one of the actors on the television show Glee, was really enjoyable. Twins Alex and Conner Bailey are struggling with big changes in their lives; their father died unexpectedly and while their mother struggles to make ends meet, they are coping with their grief. Additionally, Conner is a good student and Alex is not- and the contrast, in the beginning of the story is a perfect set up for how they both grow in new ways further on in the plot.  In a kick off familiar to most, the children "fall into" fairy land through the pages of a story book of fairy tales. It was a book handed down from their grandmother to their father, who used to read it to Alex and Conner.
The children travel through the world of fairy tales and meet all the classic characters. But their lives in Fairyland are very different than the stories we all know; and Alex and Conner are faced with the seemingly impossible task of getting back home. They have to go on a quest to various parts of Fairy Land to acquire the tokens they need to escape.
Their adventures help them work as a team, despite having different strengths-and the conclusion of the story will be surprising for the youthful audience.

Also for younger readers, we have an excellent series Outdoor Adventures which contains seven books about various outdoor sports such as canoeing, hiking, hunting and fishing.  Well written and containing chapters on necessary skills, safety, environmental concerns and joy of the sport, these fill a much needed gap on our sports bookshelf.

For young adults, we have a selection of interesting and informative non-fiction:  Budgeting Smarts , Electric Cars, Manga, and a biography of Lady Gaga.  On the fiction shelves, find The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater and Long Lankin by Lindsey Barraclough.

Search for you ancestors at the library.  They'll be waiting for you on Thursday, January 3rd at 7:00 pm during our Genealogy Club

The Friends of the Worthington Library will again team up with the Worthington Historical Society for a winter Writers Read.  This one will be held on Tuesday, January 8 at 7:00 at the Blackburn Inn.  Don't miss it:  these are fantastic!

This month's Book Club is reading Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. We will be discussing it on Thursday, January 24 at 7:00pm.
Remember that the library will be closed on January 1, 2013. We'll see you on Thursday!  Have safe and happy new year!


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Upcoming Events and New Items on the Shelves

This month, The Worthington Library's Book Club is reading Spencer Quinn's Dog On It.  This is a fun, quick read for a busy season. You'll enjoy how Quinn captures the thoughts of the dog through his actions; he really nails it!  We'll be discussing this book on Thursday December 27 at 7:00pm.  Remember that we'll be closed on Dec 25 for Christmas and January 1, 2013!
In January, the book will be Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.  Jobs was a complex, interesting man and Isaacson is an excellent biographer.  There will be a lot to discuss on Thursday, January 24 at 7:00pm. Join us!

Also in January, the Friends of the Worthington Library and the Worthington Historical Society are sponsoring another Writers Read program.  Don't miss this sampling of the best of our local authors.  Previous Writers Reads have been humorous, insightful and moving.  This season's offering will be Tuesday, January 8, 7:00pm at the Blackburn Inn.

On the shelves this week, you will discover a lot of new-to-us materials, many donated by library patrons. 
DVDs  The Girl with the dragon tattoo
            The Girl who played with fire
            The Girl who kicked the hornet's nest
   note: these are the original Swedish versions
            The Exorcism of Emily Rose
            Murder by numbers
            Sherlock Holmes: the complete series (television)

CDs     The chronicles of Narnia - all seven books
            Bloodline by James Rollins

Large Print   Soft touch by Maeve Haran

Young Adult  24 girls in 7 days by Alex Bradley
                     The American Plains Indians by Jason Hook
                     The Apaches by Jason Hook
                     The American Indian Wars, 1860-1890 by Philip Katcher
                     U.S. Cavalry on the Plains, 1850-1890 by Philip Katcher
      New!:      How to draw vampires by Mike Butkus
                     How to draw wizards by John Rheaume
                     How to draw zombies by Mike Butkus

Thanks to all who have donated these gently used books, cds and dvds.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Some new books are on the New Books shelf this month. Here is a list:
The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury
In the belly of Jonah by Sandra Brannan
Last to die by Tess Gerritsen
Peaches for Father Francis by Joanne Harris
Sleep no more by Iris Johansen
Sunrise Point by Robyn Carr
Winter of the world by Ken Follett
XO by Jeffrey Deaver

Non fiction titles:
Killing Lincoln by Bill O'Reilly
Plutocrats by Chrystia Freeland
The receptionist by Janet Groth
A thousand mornings by Mary Oliver

In Young Adult fiction, we have Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series including:
City of bones
City of ashes
City of glass
City of fallen angels
City of lost souls

In Junior fiction, look for
The third wheel, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, book 7 by Jeff Kinney
Penny and her doll  by Kevin Henkes

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel is available on CD

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Worthington Library
Hungry Town
In concert – 7pm, Nov 17, 2012
At the Worthington Historical Society
 Called the modern representatives of tradition-based folk music.
All are welcome to enjoy this free concert.
Refreshments served.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Library Closed for Hurricane Sandy

The Worthington Library will be closed on Tuesday, October 30, due to the conditions caused by Hurricane Sandy.  Stay home, stay safe and read a book! 

Meanwhile, mark your calendars for our concert on Saturday, November 17 at 7:00pm at the Worthington Historical Society.  We will be hosting folk duo Hungry Town with their mix of Celtic, Appalachian and original music.  Don't miss this great concert! Free to the public.  Refreshments served.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

August - Time to kick back and read.  Soon enough the fall will ramp up and there will be lots of things to do.  Try this new offering:

The Dead Do Not Improve by Jay Caspian Kang
An odd book-very well written, at times a little too layered to follow
and yet that is what makes it stand out from other "crime" novels. It
is more of a novel that just happens to be about crime, and San
Francisco and a handful of the weird quirks that make up the stew that
is San Francisco. A surfer dude police detective? A bemused and
oblivious hero? A gangsta who takes Advanced Creative Writing? Read it
and see how that all works together.

And in case you haven't tried this one, don't miss it!

The Third Gate by Lincoln Child
I loved reading this book, totally empathizing with Jeremy Logan who
is an "enigmologist" who studies paranormal or bizarre events. While
he is regarded with some suspicion, or condescension, he is crucial to
the archaeological team secretly working to locate the tomb of an
ancient pharaoh. There is a powerful crown at stake and curses galore.
The site is located in the Sudd, a nasty shifting swamp, and of course
many strange "accidents" take place. The pacing is good, the tension
builds, the hidden subplots become revealed, and the curses are
activated. Wow!

Coming up at the library will be the Annual Meeting with a talk by Ryan Neuhauser about the possibilities that fiber optics brings to us.  All are welcome and encouraged to attend.  We'd love to see you!  Thursday, September 20 at 7:00pm.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Summer Reading at the Library

Dream Big is the theme for this year's summer reading program.  Next on the schedule is a great storyteller, Mary Jo Maichaick with THE ONE YOU DON'T SEE COMING... stories & music of sleep, dreams and starry nights.  This event, sponsored by the Friends of the Worthington Library, will be held at 10:30am on Thursday July 26, 2012.  While you are at the program, make sure you sign up to win the BIG E TICKETS.  Thanks to the folks at the Big E for encouraging kids to read all summer.  The drawing will be held at the Dream Big Party on August 9.

On the evening of July 26, beginning at 7:00pm, the library book club will discuss Catherine the Great; Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie.  Pick up a copy of the book at the library and join in.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


New Books are on the shelves!  Below are a few reviews to help you choose what to read first.  Don't forget the Summer Reading Program:  DREAM BIG:  READ  begins this week with a visit from our friends Bates and Tincknell with their song and story celebration "Imagine That" on Thursday, July 12, 10:30 am at the Worthington Library.  Their program is funded in part by a grant from the Worthington Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Massachusetts Cultural council, and by the Friends of the Worthington Library.


Hunt by Andrew Fukour
“Don’t Sweat.  Don’t Laugh.  Don’t draw attention to yourself.  And
most of all, whatever you do, do not fall in love with one of them.”
This was an interesting take on the current vampire craze; everyone is
a vampire except for a few humans and most of them have been hunted
down and killed. Gene is a human who is “passing” as a vampire and to
pass requires great effort and constant watchfulness. He is in high
school and his father got bitten a few years ago and ran off in order
not to bite Gene, so he has been on his own. Now he is chosen to run
in a hunt for the last humans and fears that discovery is imminent.
How will he escape this dilemma with not only his life, but the lives
of some others who look to him for rescue? Great read!

2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson
This book is terrific for those who appreciate science fiction that is
richly imaginative; worlds, alien races, a radically transformed earth
and a talented but flawed heroine fill the pages.
The story kicks off on Mercury, in the city of Terminator, with a
death that will change the life of  Swan Er Hong. The sequence of
events played out from this first tragedy will provoke and challenge
her, as she works to unravel who is behind the destruction that
threatens the “habitats” containing humans and other species on
different planets. More analytical readers may find gaps in the
narrative, but I wasn’t looking for them, I just enjoyed the book.

The Kissing List by Stephanie Reents
This selection of connected short is about four young women at the
beginning of their adult lives. The events in each story are not
necessarily unique but somehow the responses of the women are
definitely not predictable in the least.  I felt a kind of kinship
with them and yet found them extraordinary. I imagined knowing women
like them, and admiring the strange ways they handled the life
situations they found themselves in at the same time. One woman went
to sort out her thoughts about being pregnant at a family cabin in the
country and found herself not only unable to kill the mice who had
taken over the place, but feeling like she was the intruder and so
yielded to their claim on the cabin.
This book is moving, funny and reads quickly.

I Am Forbidden by Anouk Markovits
This book is so well written and so engaging that I read straight
through it in one sitting. It traces the lives of two young people who
first meet in 1944, both children who have survived being murdered by
the Romanian Iron Guard. The young boy, Josef is “hidden”, raised by
the Christian maid formerly employed by his parents; he is later
reunited with the rabbi who took in the young girl, Mila, raising her
with his own children. The young boy ends up in New York, a Hasidic
scholar. The young girl is raised in Paris within the Orthodox sect,
the Satmar and becomes closely bonded with her “sister” Atara. The two
young women end up taking radically different paths as the approach
marriageable age. Mila stays within the religion, marrying Josef and
moving to New York and faces devastating choices that conflict her
heart with the laws of her religion. Atara, captivated by secular
books, history and culture, runs away and only reenters the story near
the end, as the two are reunited.

As the Crow Flies by Craig Johnson
This was a terrific, fun story. A Sheriff, a murder, a small western
town and a wedding on the Cheyenne reservation bring to mind the very
successful Tony Hillerman novels. This book, and I hope, the other
seven books with Sheriff Walt Longmire, is no genre copycat. The quiet
humor, the impossible situations that still seem real, and interesting
character development had me staying up late to finish this one; The
Sheriff, his daughter Cady, his undersheriff, his buddy Henry Standing
Bear and the new tribal police chief, Lolo Long, come through quite
clearly both through description and dialogue. I plan to go hunt down
the other books as soon as possible.

Oxford Messed Up by Andrea Kayne Kaufman
Can you really write an interesting love story about a young
“failed-to-launch” antihero, Henry, and his new suite mate, Gloria,
who suffers from an Obsessive-Compulsive disorder around germs and
human contact. Can you write it in a way that is compelling, that
sheds some understanding on what Gloria’s inner world/voice must be
like? Can love overcome all those challenges?  Well, yes, you can
write the interesting love story, and yes, it is compelling. Love
alone does not quite overcome all the challenges but it helps. So does
Gloria’s inner strength supported by the possibility of both love and
a life and the idea that she could help Henry find that same strength
in himself.  Ready to reread it!

A Partial History of Lost Causes by  Jennifer duBois
This terrific story is really two stories; one is about Aleksandr
Bezetov and takes place in St. Petersburg, Russia. The other is about
Irina Ellison, from Cambridge Mass. She finds a letter from her
father, who died of Huntington’s disease, to Aleksandry, written to
him when his was the World chess champion. Irina's father wants to
know, “How does one proceed against a lost cause?”
Convinced that she has inherited Huntington’s, watching for the first
symptoms, Irina travels to Russia to find Bezetov and get an answer
for her father, and for herself. Bezetov, meanwhile has become a major
political player, a dissident who is compelled by his own moral
compass to stand for election against Vladimir Putin, putting his life
on the line. The back story, how these two lives intersect and how the
whole thing plays out makes this an epic well worth reading.

The Expats by Chris Pavone
This is a terrific espionage story which includes a mother with a
double life as a CIA agent, her brilliant husband who may be one of
the few banking/computer wizards to not make a fortune and a
mysterious swindle of fifty million dollars from an evil arms dealer.
From the US to Luxembourg to Paris this double, double cross keeps you
turning the pages. If you like smart, fierce female lead characters,
this book is for you.

The Night She Disappeared by April Henry
This is a young adult novel and I think it will be enjoyed by young
adults; and while I enjoyed it , there are other YA novels that you
forget are aimed at a specific audience. This is not one of them.
However, it has good writing, clear characters, a believable story and
strength behind the two main characters, Gabie and Drew that is
compelling. I did note that Gabie conveniently has two parents who are
doctors and thus always rushing off to the hospital, leaving her at
free will more than most teens.

Saturday, June 23, 2012


A number of books have hit the New Shelf.  Here are reviews of a few of them from our library reviewer, Susan Arthen.

A Slave in the White House: Paul Jennings and the Madisons by Elizabeth Dowling Taylor

I liked this book, but I wanted to love it. Taylor has put together the very interesting story of Paul Jennings, a slave owned by the Madisons, who wrote his own book, A Colored Man's Reminiscencs of James Madison­.   I felt the story was really interesting, but I also felt that some of Taylor's suppositions about what Jennings's thoughts and feelings were did not have that ring of truth I was looking for in  the book. Paul Jennings was clearly a special man, or the recipient of special treatment. He was literate, and once freed became a landowner and none of these things would have happened if by accident of birth (or purchase) he had ended up in a different family. The book did make me wonder how many more slaves could have had this kind of success, how many good minds and good hearts never had the chance to flourish. 

Wayward Saints by Suzzy Roche

This was a fun read; Mary Saint is the small town girl who made it almost all the way to the top as a rock star and then slowly slid back down and out of the profession all together. There are a lot of 'familiar" characters in the book; an abusive father, the lover/bandmate who dies accidentally, and more. But there are also unexpected characters that give a twist to the story and so you think you know where it is going but you are not sure.  There are several subplots, from the growth of Mary's mother, to the visions Mary has had, to the sad dreams of a local high school teacher, but they all work together. The story never feels muddy or confusing and brings us to a fairly tidy conclusion. Tidy but not perfect.

Switched by Amanda Hocking

This is the first of a young adult trilogy about changelings and trolls. It is an updated slant on a familiar fantasy theme, both in literature and in life, that of not feeling like you belong in your family, that you are a changeling and your real parents will come for you. When Wendy's  "mother" tries to kill her because she knows Wendy is not her child, she is locked away as crazy. But she knew the truth.  Wendy finds out she is a princess, that she now belongs in a sumptuous castle-like house and that she belongs. However, she did not plan on being a troll nor having to engage in endless social maneuvers. I read the book straight through in a few hours and I think YA readers will enjoy it.  I am waiting for the second book to see what plays out, as the last few pages from this first book leave you hanging!


Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Finally, the time has come for the 1940 Census to be released to the public. The Worthington Library's monthly Genealogy Club is celebrating with a 1940's Party. Come in at 7:00pm Thursday, April 5 and help us celebrate. Wear 1940 style clothing if you wish and we'll explore how to access the data in the census. This census has fascinating information about the time between the Depression and World War II. While it will take some time for the information to be indexed and easily searchable on line, there are ways to get to the data. If you've always wondered where and how your recent ancestors lived, this is what you've been waiting for. Refreshments will be served.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Art and Music Featured in New Books

New books this month feature art and music. Learn to Draw is a series of children's books covering Machines, Dinosaurs, Backyard Animals, Amazing Animals, Pets and Space. The series How the World Makes Music has a volume on each instrument family including the voice. These are in Junior Non-fiction titles. Look for an orange sticker on the drawing books and a purple one on the music books.
For adults, we have America's College Museums and Working Americans, 1880-2011: Our History Through Music. The first of these reference works lists all the museums affiliated with colleges across the country. Indexed by region, state, college or university and type of museum, this book will be useful in planning trips. Hours and admission fees are listed along with extensive descriptions of the museums. Working Americans is a series that profiles the lives of Americans decade by decade; with this volume, music is the focus. Each of the twelve chapters includes three profiles, historical snapshots and musical history. This will be a great resource for reports, genealogy and anyone interested in music or history.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

And the Winner Is...

The Friends of the Worthington Library want to thank all who bought tickets for the Winter Basket. Bev Bowman was the winner! The Spring Basket will be raffled in May. Your contributions to this effort help the library present the children's programming for Summer Reading and help purchase books from the Wish List. If you are interested in joining the Friends, call Laurie McAnulty, Susan VanBuren or Hillary Costa. Meetings are the third Thursday of each month.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

News, Reviews and Events at the Library

New books are on the shelf at the library while many older ones which haven't been read for years are moving on to the Friends of the Library Book Sale on February 11 from 10am - 2pm. If you have books to donate, take them to the stage at the Worthington Town Hall before Friday the 10th. Come in to see a great selection of fiction and non-fiction books, DVDs and CDs, too! Here are a couple of reviews for books in on our new shelf:

Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman

This is a fabulous, engrossing novel, described as five years in the writing, and worth every bit of the wait. It takes place in the Judean desert beginning in 70 B.C. and weaves together the stories of four women who take care of the dovecote at the fortress at Masada tell their stories. There is Yael, the daughter and sister of Sicarii, professional assassins, and Revka, who with her two mute grandsons has just witnessed the horrific murder of the boys' mother in the desert. Shirah and her warrior daughter Aziza. Shirah, a healer and a witch, worships the ancient goddess Ashtoreth while her daughter disguises herself as a boy in order to use her warrior skills, providing a contrast to her brother who shrinks from those same skills. The women's ability to survive, and just as importantly, to carve lives which fraught with danger also have deep meaning make this story hard to put down. For all who have had to face life with resilience, this book honors that and much more.

The library book club will be reading Dovekeepers and discussing it at our regular meeting on February 23 at 7:00pm. Join us - everyone is welcome.

This next book is new this week:

A Grown Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson

Jackson takes you on an interesting journey as she builds the story in A Grown Up Kind of Pretty. It is multi-generational, though Ginny, the oldest is only 45, and bases the narrative on the fact that every 15 years some kind of trouble up ends her life. One story line is about her daughter Liza, and her daughter Mosey, whose blood connection comes into question when a grave with an infant's skeleton is found in Ginny's back yard. Another is about Ginny's relationship in the past with the love of her life, who was married (but separated!) at the beginning of their relationship and is now divorced. A third story line is about Liza, and who fathered her child, and who now is recovering from a stroke. Each story line is well thought out, holds hidden information that gets revealed with excellent timing and weaves in with the other story lines pretty seamlessly. You get attached to the characters immediately and can't wait to see how everything works out.

Don't miss the following upcoming events - all free and open to the public at the Worthington Library.

Genealogy Club: Thursday, February 2 at 7:00pm

Movie Night: Friday, February 10 at 7:00pm We'll view The Help this month.