August 2021 Library News and Events

August 1, 2021

August 2021 Library News & Events

All programs are free of charge unless noted otherwise.  Learn more at

BPL Library Reopening!
All branch libraries not currently under reconstruction are now open for in-person services. All reopening plans follow the latest city and state public health guidance. While there will be no capacity limits or social distancing required, patrons using the library buildings will still need to wear masks since the library serves vulnerable populations and children who cannot yet be vaccinated. For more information, see

BPL COVID-19 Resources
Looking for reliable information about COVID vaccines? The BPL has put together a resource guide to help answer your questions.

Roslindale Library Program Survey
The Roslindale Branch is scheduled to reopen in the fall with a new head librarian. The Friends plan on collaborating with staff to bring a robust series of programs to the new space, and we are looking for community input about what types of programs would interest you. Please check any topic that would be of interest, indicate whether your interest is for adults or youth, and feel free to provide more details or other suggestions here.

Attention Local Authors!
Do you have a book coming out in 2021 or 2022? Please keep us updated so that we can share the news with Rozzie residents in our newsletter and ask our partner at Rozzie Bound to link to the book online. Rozzie Bound generously shares a portion of sales with the Friends. Email us at the book title, author, format, ISBN, and a brief description.

Volunteer Restockers Needed
The Roslindale Community Library network needs some volunteers to keep some of our business and home-based little libraries stocked.  You can take responsibility for one or more.  It involves checking every few weeks and picking up and delivering books as needed.

Calling all newly installed little library owners!  
The Friends maintains a map of available little libraries in Roslindale and if you recently installed your own, you may not be on it.  If you would like to be listed, please email your address to

BIPOC Author Preorders
As part of the ongoing conversation about improving equity in the publishing industry, we have worked with Rozzie Bound to create a virtual shelf featuring upcoming books by authors of color that you can preorder now.  By preordering, you help drive up sales and possible placement on bestseller lists and help make publishers pay attention to and better support and uplift authors of color and their readership.  The shelf currently lists a number of books from different genres coming out this summer and fall and will be updated regularly.  Some notable upcoming books include Helen Hoang's The Heart Principle (Aug 31), Colson Whitehead's Harlem Shuffle (Sep 14), Angela Davis's reissued Autobiography (Oct 19), and Nikole Hannah-Jones's The 1619 Project (Nov 16).  Preorder these and other books here.  You can also suggest the BPL purchase these books.  Learn more about library purchasing here.

Friends Summer Reading List!
It's time for summer reading, and we collaborated with Rozzie Bound to create a list of some of the hottest books coming out this season. We have books for adults, teens, and kids in print, ebook, and audiobook formats.  We have a wide variety of genres selected, including literary fiction, mystery, thrillers, romance, history, biography/memoir, science fiction/fantasy, and true crime! Best of all, the Friends receive 20% of the sales for all books sold from this list.   Get your summer reading shopping started here.

Even More Summer Reading!
If you are looking for more summer reading options, check out our Pride Month ListAAPI Heritage Month List, and our Craft and Hobby Online Book Fair. Not only will you be supporting the Friends, but you will also be supporting our locally-owned, independent bookstore Rozzie Bound!

Little Library Program at the Food Pantry Seeks Volunteers
Since early January, the Friends have been setting up a Little Library at the Roslindale Food Pantry.  The Pantry runs out of the Congregational Church (25 Cummins Highway) from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. every Saturday.  The Pantry serves between 75 - 90 individuals/families every week.  Before the Pantry opens, our volunteers set up a portable bookshelf and stock it with adult, young adult, early reader, and children’s books.  The volunteer is responsible for returning to the church at 4:00 p.m. (at the close of the Pantry) to break down the Little Library and store the shelf and books.   If you are interested in volunteering for this program, please e-mail Laura Sitterley at  You do not need to commit to a certain number of Saturdays a month.  Thank you!

BPL Summer Reading
The library is doing a summer reading program for both children and adults. Sign up and download a bingo card at The Bingo card has 24 challenges. Complete a row on the bingo card and submit it for a chance to win a $20 gift card to your favorite independent book store. Participants will also be entered into a grand prize drawing for a $200 gift card to an independent restaurant or grocery store. Challenge yourself to read and participate in library programs nine times throughout the summer. Please pick up a bookmark to track your progress at any BPL branch, and turn it in for a chance to win books, toys, and age-appropriate activity kits. Go to for more information.

Preschool Storytime Reads the Alphabet
Tuesdays, August 10, 17, 24, and 31, 4:30 PM

Join Children’s Librarian Celeste Bocchicchio-Chaudhri on zoom for Preschool Story Time for ages 3-5. This month we will finish up our Preschool Storytime Reads the Alphabet series with the letters x, y, and z. The final Preschool Storytime of August will have a back-to-school/starting school theme. Please go to to register. Registering once will sign you up for the whole series so you do not need to register every week.

Bouncing Babies in Adams Park
Tuesdays, August 10, 17, 24, and 31, 10 AM

Join Children’s Librarian Celeste Bocchicchio-Chaudhri at Adams Park for Bouncing Babies storytime for ages birth to two. Miss Celeste will share stories, rhymes, and fingerplays designed to help build early literacy skills. Bring a mat or blanket to sit on. Miss Celeste will also have some yoga mats for seating, but as the program is popular she often runs out. In the event of rain, the program will be canceled. Follow the Roslindale Library on Facebook for up-to-date information about whether or not storytime is canceled.

Boston Public Library at the Roslindale Farmers Market
Saturday, August 14, 9 AM -1 PM

Roslindale Children’s Librarian Celeste Bocchicchio-Chaudhri and other BPL staff will be tabling at the Roslindale Farmer’s market on August 14. Be sure to stop by to say hello and learn more about all the things the library has to offer.

Visit Miss Celeste!
Beginning on August 9, Miss Celeste will be spending the remainder of the Roslindale closure working at the Mattapan Branch. If you are in the neighborhood, swing by and say hello!

Online Race and Inclusion Book Discussion:
How The Word Is Passed
Saturdays, September 11, 25, and October 2
9:15 - 11 AM (Morning) or 2 - 3:45 PM (Afternoon)

We will discuss Clint Smith's new book, How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery in America. A deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, the book illustrates how some of our country’s most essential stories are hidden in plain view—whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods like downtown Manhattan, where the brutal history of the trade-in enslaved men, women, and children have been deeply imprinted.

The discussion will happen on Zoom and will be led by local educator Josh Frank.  You can get the book from or an online bookstore like Rozzie Bound, which has the book listed on the Friends "Black Histories and Futures" adult virtual bookshelf.  The Friends will receive 50% of proceeds from each book sold.  You can find the virtual shelf here:

Because this is a very popular book, we will have two sessions with 20 participants each on the three dates.  Times: Morning session at 9:15 - 11 AM and an afternoon session at 2 - 3:45 PM.

To register, please email JP Branch librarian Laura Pattison at  Please write "How the Word Is Passed Discussion" in the subject line when you RSVP.

  • You only need to register once for all three dates, even if you think you might miss a date.
  • Please choose the morning or afternoon time, and you will be registered for that same time for each date.
  • Laura will register the first 40 people, 20 each for the morning and afternoon groups.  You will get an email if you are registered.  If you do not get an email from Laura, please assume that you are not registered.

This discussion is co-sponsored by the Friends of the JP Branch Library.

Future Readers Club
The Future Readers Club is for children ages birth to kindergarten and their caregivers, a club to support reading aloud to the very youngest children with a goal of reading 1000 books together before the child begins kindergarten. The Club includes programming like Preschool Storytime and Bouncing babies as well as an app to track the books you are reading with your little one and opportunities to receive free books to keep. We want your help to make the Future Readers Club even better! Please respond to our survey as we plan FRC programming for the fall and beyond. More info:

Children’s Book Bundles
Roslindale Children’s Librarian Celeste Bocchicchio-Chaudhri and Jamaica Plain Children’s Librarian Barbara Rhodes are working together to create custom book bundles for kids to pick up at the Jamaica Plain library. We know it is hard to know what books to choose for your kids without browsing the shelves. Since the library buildings will remain closed for the time being due to escalating COVID cases in the city, book bundles are the next best thing to browsing! Fill out one of our request forms, or email the information to, and we will prepare a stack of books just for your kid!

After-hours Book Drops Are Now Open
While the Roslindale Book drop is still unavailable due to the ongoing construction, the after-hours book drops at the other city branches are now open. You can return books at your convenience.

Friends Book Reviews
Friends co-president Constance Martin reviewed Dear Mrs. Bird by A.J. Pearce, now in paperback. "Are you fascinated by historical fiction about World War II but looking for something that will make you laugh as well as cry? Dear Mrs. Bird is a warm and emotional story of a young woman in London who yearns to be a war correspondent during WWII but finds a job instead of working on advice magazine during the day (what the Brits call an Agony Aunt) while doing her bit for the war at night as bombs fall. This was fresh and appealing, humorous at times, heartbreaking at others, and altogether delightful. For those who fell in love with Emmeline Lake, she will return in a sequel, Yours Cheerfully, which will be published in August. Both books can be ordered from Rozzie Bound or put on reserve at the BPL."

Friends treasurer Talia Whyte reviewed Julia Cooke's Come Fly the World: The Jet-Age Story of the Women of Pan Am. "I found out about this book while watching author Julia Cooke on Book TV. I’m so glad I read it because I learned a lot about the airline industry. Come Fly the World follows the many stories of female flight attendants during the height of the airline’s popularity in the 60s and 70s.  It truly is a feminist story because being a flight attendant at that time was both restrictive and revolutionary at the same time."

Send Us Your Book Reviews!
Are you reading any interesting books this summer?  Send us at your brief review and we will publish it in a future newsletter.

Online Resource Highlight: Very Short Introductions

Very Short Introductions is an online resource that offers concise introductions to a diverse range of subject areas.  Just published: new VSI publications on Amphibians, Diplomatic History, Competition and Antitrust Law, Habeas Corpus, and Jewish Literature.

Enter the website here.

Business Donations!
Thanks to recent donations from Google, John Hancock, and Bain Capital, we can continue online programming during the pandemic.  We welcome donations large and small to help defray costs to keep us going.  If you work with a company that offers donations and corporate matches to 501c3 nonprofits like the Friends, please consider contacting your human resources or external giving department and email us at

Amazon Shopping with the Friends!
If you are doing more Amazon shopping during the lockdown, please consider registering with our Friends' AmazonSmile account.  For eligible purchases at AmazonSmile, the Friends receive 0.5 percent of the purchase price year-round.  There is no additional cost to the Friends or AmazonSmile customers. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for donation” on their product detail pages. The shopping experience is identical to, with the added benefit that the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate that percentage to the Friends!  The percentage might seem minuscule, but this adds up if you are a regular Amazon customer who makes purchases several times a week or month.  Of course, if you want to donate directly to the Friends, you can do so on our donation page or become a Friends member.  Every dollar and cent counts!

Online ESL Classes

The BPL offers various online courses for those learning English:

  • Beginner Class for Spanish Speakers, Fridays, 10:30-11:30 am
  • High Beginner/Elementary Class, Fridays, 11:30am-12:30pm
  • Intermediate Class, Wednesdays, 1-2:15 pm
  • Advanced Class, Tuesdays, 1-2:15 pm
  • Reading and Discussion Class, Thursdays, 11 am-12:30 pm
  • Conversation Classes, Mondays, 3-4:15pm, Tuesdays, 5:30-6:45pm, Wednesdays, 7-8:30pm, Fridays, 1-2:15pm

Students can register by emailing or calling 617-859-2446. They also have an online ESL Singing Class with the Back Bay Chorale, Tuesdays, 10:30-11:30 pm, students can register at  The BPL is partnering with St. Mark Community Education Program to offer online Citizenship classes. The classes have already started, but students can sign up for the waitlist at

BPL Reading Together
The Boston Public Library is launching Reading Together, a yearlong reading challenge for the year 2021. While many Bostonians remain isolated due to the global health emergency, Reading Together challenges BPL patrons to read a book each month that falls under a suggested theme. The themes were chosen to broaden perspectives and connect readers across the city throughout the year.  Readers of all ages and all language speakers are encouraged to participate in the yearlong challenge. Recommended booklists corresponding to the monthly themes are available for adults, teens, and children at Readers are also welcome to choose their own books each month and to share their recommendations with others participating in the challenge.

Museum Passes
The Boston Public Library also announced it is reinstating a version of the Museum Passes program, granting BPL patrons access to free and discounted passes to Massachusetts museums and cultural institutions. As museums continue to open in Phase Three of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan, the library will add more institutions to the program. For more information on COVID-19 safety requirements when visiting these organizations, patrons can call or visit their websites directly.

Books of the Month

Each month we feature themed booklists grouped for adults, teenagers/young adults, and children, and can be borrowed as an ebook from!

Books about Job Skills
Whether you're new to job hunting, switching to a new employment opportunity, or are looking to improve your workflow, this booklist is for you!

Books about Mystery, Thrillers, and Suspense
Can't get enough? Try one of these for your summer reading enjoyment!

Books about Black Lives Matter
Now and always, the Boston Public Library stands with the Black community. Check out one of these titles today to educate yourself about police brutality, anti-Black racism in the present day and throughout history, and the BLM movement.  None of these books have waitlists!

Words of Wisdom

“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful individual is a lot of hard work." - Stephen King

Sharing is Caring
The best way to know about upcoming offsite Roslindale library programs, special events, news, and renovation updates is to stay on this email list, like our Facebook page, and regularly visit and  If you know anyone who would like to join our email list, please tell them to sign up on our website's homepage at  We would also appreciate it if you forward our emails and share and like our Facebook posts with your networks to help get the word out.

Support the Friends!
We are a volunteer-run organization. All the work we do for library programming, publicity, and building improvements is done with support from the community. There are many ways to support the Friends, like donating, becoming a Friends member, and even shopping on Amazon!

Contact the Friends
For information about the Friends, contact us.  We also share information about upcoming events, photos from past events, and other library news on Facebook, and on our blog!

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