standing Westerly Library

If you’re on Facebook, you have probably seen a post that has been making the rounds. People are being asked to list 10 books that have stayed with them. They don’t necessarily have to be great books, but books that were remembered long after they were read. I was nominated to do this by a good friend of mine from college (it sort of works like the chain letters of the past). I played along and came up with 10, although I didn’t select any friends of mine to participate. I’m always reluctant to do that. Consider this your warning — never involve me in a chain letter or email because I will be the broken link in that chain!

It has been interesting to see what my friends pick as their top 10, and also which ones appear over and over in the lists of different people. “The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger and “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee are two that keep surfacing. I’ve also seen numerous mentions of “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” by Betty Smith, which makes me feel good because that was one of my very favorite books growing up. Most people mention at least one book they read as a child. I listed “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” in addition to “The Chronicles of Narnia.”

My list included “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls, a memoir. Actually, my college friend and I both listed this book, but she had a great summary I’ll share here: “What a story, what a life. This memoir was funny, sad, crazy, and heartbreaking. She’s a great writer, nothing extra but so much on the page. That opening scene of her in a NYC taxi and seeing her mom trash picking out the window … WOW.”

I also selected “Freedom” by Jonathan Franzen. At times I found this novel a slog with a lot of detail, but in the end I wept and I absolutely loved it. Additionally, “She’s Come Undone” by Wally Lamb, “Rule of the Bone” by Russell Banks, “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak, “The Kite Runner” by Khaled Hosseini, and “The Pillars of the Earth” by Ken Follett were some of my favorites.

If you are on Facebook, I hope you’ll like the library’s page. It is listed as “Westerly Library & Wilcox Park” and we update it often so you can keep abreast of library events and see great photos from the park or programs we organize. I’d love to see our library patrons list their 10 books on the library’s Facebook page! I promise I’ll play too and won’t drop the ball this time!

Top requested books

1. “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens

2. “Summer of ‘69” by Elin Hilderbrand

3. “City of Girls” by Elizabeth Gilbert

4. “One Good Deed” by David Baldacci

5. “Mrs. Everything” by Jennifer Weiner

6. “The New Girl” by Daniel Silva

7. “Educated: A Memoir” by Tara Westover

8. “A Better Man” by Louise Penny

9. “Evvie Drake Starts Over” by Linda Holmes

10. “The Turn of the Key” by Ruth Ware

Top requested movies

1. “Game of Thrones, season 8”

2. “Outlander, Season 4”

3. “Dumbo”

4. “Captain Marvel”

5. “Marvel’s Avengers. Endgame”

6. “Long Shot”

7. “The Hustle”

8. “Shazam!”

9. “Breakthrough”

10. “Alita: Battle Angel”

This week

MONDAY — 9:30-10:30 a.m., Book Club: Sanity & Tallulah – for ages 9-12, online registration required! Kids get a free copy of the book; 10-10:45 a.m., Toddler Music (ages birth-5) – an interactive music program for parents and kids; 1-3 p.m., Dungeons and Dragons (Teen Led Program) – No prior experience with the game is necessary—registration is required; 2-4 p.m., Teen Craft – Galactic Slime! Materials and snacks provided—come make slime and add coloring and glitter (for ages 12-19); 6-7:30 p.m., Adult S.A.G.A. meeting -- a discussion and support group for adults about LGBTQ+ stories and issues in books, movies, TV shows, and more.

TUESDAY — 10-11 a.m., Fiddle ‘n Fun at Craig Field (17 Mountain Ave.) – for ages 5-12, an independent music education program; 2-4 p.m., Starry Night Sidewalk Chalk (for ages 12-19) – recreate Van Gogh’s Starry Night on the sidewalks of Wilcox Park! 5-7 p.m., Meet the Artist! – come meet the Hoxie Gallery’s July artist; 5:30-7:30 p.m., Knit and Crochet Group! – a friendly knitting, crochet, needlework, and yarn craft club; 6-7:45 p.m., Sewing Social – amateur or experienced sewers are welcome! 6-6:45 p.m., Meditation Group – all ages and experience levels welcome! 8-10 p.m., Star Party & Picnic – for teens, a star viewing party on the library’s balcony! We will have telescopes set up for viewing, pre-registration is required, space is limited!

WEDNESDAY — 9:15-10 a.m., Storytime at the Watch Hill Library – for ages 3+, at 2 Everett Ave.; 10-11 a.m., Intro to Coding with Dash Robots (for ages 7-12) – online pre-registration required, a quick introduction to robots and coding; 1-3 p.m., Animation Nation Club (ages 8-12) – a stop-motion film making program, online pre-registration required.

THURSDAY — 10-11 a.m., Fiddle ‘n Fun at Cimalore Field (10 Wilson St.) – for ages 5-12, an independent music education program; 10:15-11 a.m., Toddler Painting (birth-4 years) – online registration required for a short story time followed by a group painting class. Each toddler will have their own easel and paper. Class will be near the fountain in Wilcox Park! 11:30-12:30 p.m., Storytime for ages 3+ at Mel’s Downtown Creamery; 2-3:30 p.m., Alien Cosmetics (for ages 13-19) – make your own make-up out of natural ingredients, registration is required and space is limited; 4-5:30 p.m., Teen Gardening Club – come learn about gardening and earn volunteer hours! 5:30-7:30 p.m., Chess Club – All ages and experience levels are welcome, no sign-up required; 6-7:30 p.m., Irish Games Night! – come play Irish games in the Irish language, beginners welcome!

FRIDAY — 10-11 a.m., Wild Australia (ages 6-12) – learn about Australian animals; 2-4 p.m., World Building Series (part 3) – for ages 13-19, come and build your own world. This session focuses on weird voices for alien characters in your world. We will make and aliens podcast to broadcast to the stars!

SATURDAY — 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m., Adult Writers Workshop – A group-led prose writing workshop; 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Return of Camera Obscura – weather permitting (must be sunny), find us in Wilcox Park.

Nina Wright is a reference librarian at the Westerly Library.

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