A word from Glenn

Earlier this fall, library assistant Glenn Walter retired after eight years at the Nichols Library. Read Glenn’s farewell letter to the Center Harbor community, in which he expresses his joy and gratitude for his years here.

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No new curbside Monday

I am not able to be in Center Harbor Monday (12/14), but am planning a make-up day for new requests on Tuesday.

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Kinnaman to retire as library director

Allen Jon Kinnaman, director of the James E. Nichols Memorial Library from 2005 through 2020, will retire at the end of the year.  Library Assistant Glenn Walter retired earlier this year.  Circulation Assistant Lois Brady will provide interim services while the Board of Trustees conducts a search for a new director. 

Mr Kinnaman sent a letter of appreciation to the Center Harbor community. which can be read in full here: “It is hard to imagine it’s been fifteen years since I stood outside the Nichols Library on a freezing second of January, waiting for the former librarian to meet me at the door and welcome me in as the new director. Words cannot express what a pleasure it has been to greet you at the library and help you find the right book or movie to make your day.

People have sometimes asked why I became a librarian.  It was not my original intention in life.  That said, there is something uniquely satisfying about the work. In One Long River of Song (which I highly recommend, by the way), Brian Doyle says:

an leabharlann (the ancient Irish word for library) is where your community stores its treasures. It’s the house that imagination built. It’s where all the stories that matter are gathered together and shared. People come to it seeking for something that’s deep and ancient. Who you are as a town is in the library.”

I hope that as I have come to know you that the Nichols Library has grown in a way that reflects your treasures and inspires your imagination”.

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Stock up for the Holiday.

The Nichols Library will be closed on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (Nov 25th, 26th and 27th) this week. We will be back open for curbside delivery on Monday, 11/30. We will also be getting an inter-library loan delivery.

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What to read? Book group fav

Things Fall Apart by Nigerian novelist, essayist, and poet Chinua Achebe (1930; d.2013) is a book group perennial.

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What to read? high adventure!

From pieces of eight to tales of Gothic horror, Robert Louis Stevenson (11/13/1850) was a masterful teller of tales. Tight plotting and memorable characters don’t grow old. Treasure Island‘s voyage for pirate treasure is made memorable by John Silver’s loveable rogue, who charms as he plots mutiny and mayhem. Kidnapped‘s adventure of a young man cheated of his inheritance is grounded in historic events: the failed rebellion of Bonnie Prince charlie and the trade of indentured servants to the American colonies (Gabaldon fans, this is your wheelhouse). Jekyll and Hyde was something else entirely, a horror story that explored the idea of split personality.

Stevenson’s stories have seldom been successfully translated to film. Hollywood scriptwriters unwisely persist in trying to improve on the master (a notable exception was Disney’s 1960 Kidnapped, which wisely stuck to the text).

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What to Read? Real life snapshots

Tracy Kidders (11/12/1945) non-fiction stories offer snapshots of life as it is lived. He is the author of House, Home Town, A Truck Full of Money, Strength in what Remains, Mountains beyond Mountains, My Detachment, and Among Schoolchildren.

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What to read? War stories, horror stories and yore stories.

Authors of note with early November birthdays. James Jone’s WW2 novels (From Here to Eternity, The Thin Red Line) spoke from the common soldier’s point of view. Bram Stoker, theater impressario and staunch rationalist, helped invent the Gothic horror genre (Dracula), Margaret Mitchell wrote the best-known novel of the Lost Cause (Gone with the Wind). The library has the movie versions; we can get you the originals via inter-library loan.

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Music Matinee Bluebirds

R&B singers Bonnie Raitt (71) and Rickie Lee Jones (68) share an 11/8 birthday.

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Music matinee: Joni Mitchell

Prairie songbird and poet Joni Mitchell turns 77 today. You can listen to all her flavors: the aspiring folkie, the quintessential hippie, the daring folk-jazz innovator, and the enduring craftsman:

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