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Staff Picks: Black History Month

February is Black History Month, so we asked our staff to recommend some books and movies featuring Black voices. While Black stories are often the focus this month, we challenge everyone to elevate them anytime of year with our Diverse Reads program. It encourages you to read something new, whether that’s a different genre or a book by an author whose background is different from your own.

Staff Picks: Epistolary Novels

Universal Letter Writing Week begins Jan. 9 and we're celebrating by sharing some of our favorite epistolary novels (and a movie based on book!). Epistolary novels are written in the form of letters or other documents, like diaries or newspaper clippings. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is a more famous example, while Maria Semple's Where'd You Go, Bernadette is a more modern take.

Top Books of 2021

We looked at all the titles checked out from our Library over the past year and broke them down by age, as well as fiction vs. nonfiction for adults. Here are the top 10 titles checked out in print 2021 (or 11 if there was a tie). There's a little bit of overlap when it comes to our top eBook checkouts for the year, but they're mostly different! Are there any surprises for you? Any titles you thought would be there but aren't - or vice versa?

22 Things in 2022

Let’s kick off 2022 with 22 facts (both big and small) about our Library. We hope you learn something new. And please take advantage of all these fantastic services we offer – they're here for you to use! Be sure to read all the way to the end for a reminder about three best-selling authors who will be paying us visits soon. 

Staff Picks: National Book Award Winners

The National Book Awards were established in 1950 to celebrate the best writing in America, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, translated literature and young people's literature. With names like Toni Morrison, John Updike, Alice Walker and Ta-Nehisi Coates, there's a good chance that you've read at least one of he past winners!

You can look up all the winners year-by-year, but we're here to narrow it down a bit if you find the list a bit daunting! Check out some of our favorite National Book Award winners.

150 Years Ago: The Great Chicago Fire

Did Mrs. O'Leary's cow really start one of the most devastating fires in American history, the Great Chicago Fire? Did you know that the deadliest fire took place about 250 miles north on the very same day in Peshtigo, Wisconsin? It's been 150 years since that dry fall day and we've compiled a list of some books about these tragedies (including some fictional accounts).