D-Day June 6, 1944

photograph from New York World-Telegram June 6, 1944, via Library of Congress

Seventy years ago today, General Dwight D. Eisenhower led Operation Overlord, in which Allied troops stormed the beaches of Normandy in order to free Western Europe from the Nazi control. The five beaches were Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword. On D-Day alone, 2,500 Allied troops lost their lives and 8,500 were injured.
Remember this historic event with these resources, courtesy of your Waltham Public Library.

posted by Laura

This Week’s Best Seller Lists — June 1, 2014

Here are links to the best seller lists for June 1, 2014

This Week’s Best Seller Lists — May 25, 2014

Here are links to the best seller lists for the week of May 25, 2014

What’s the Staff Reading? (or watching or listening)

As you prepare for the long weekend, check out what some members of our staff are reading or enjoying from our DVD collection:

  • Lisa: “I just read the Dairy Queen series (YA): Dairy Queen, The Off Season and Front and Center. They were fabulous!”
  • Gerry C.: Gerry is listening to Missing You by Harlan Coben and W is for Wasted by Sue Grafton. “Coben doesn’t disappoint!” Gerry is also reading The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism by Naoki Higashida.
  • Laura: “I just finished The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh, a great suggestion from my co-worker, Nancy D! I also recently read Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, a YA/adult hybrid about a fan fiction writer navigating her way through her freshman year of college and family struggles. I just started Kay Thompson: From Funny Face to Eloise by Sam Irvin, a biography of the author of my favorite children’s series.”
  • Virginia: “Here’s what I just finished reading:
    • Field of Prey John Sandford’s 24th ‘Prey’ series featuring Minnesota police investigator Lucas Davenport. It was like all of his books a non-stop read but it is a little grisly so reader beware.
    • Finding Me the true story by Michelle Knight who was kidnapped & held prisoner in a Cleveland neighborhood for 11 years. It pulls no punches & is extremely violent. But it is also enlightening as to how much a person can go thru yet remain hopeful that the bad times will finally end & good will survive.
    • Daniel Palmer’s thriller Desperate. I couldn’t put it down. An Arlington Mass. couple arrange for a young. woman to bear them a child but then something goes terribly wrong. The narrator actually works in Waltham. I finished this in one day. There is a totally unexpected twist at the ending which will leave you saying “Wow!”.
    • Girl at the End of the World by Elizabeth Esther, a true story about a woman who was raised in a Christian cult & the religious abuse she suffered. Even after she left the cult the teachings haunted her & controlled her life. This is about her liberation from a cruel background which she had to fight to overcome.
  • Pat O: Pat is almost finished with North of Boston by Elisabeth Elo. “It’s a good story with lots of local color.”
  • Janice: “My most recent read was The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel. This was the basis for the movie-fascinating story of the little-known near loss of art pieces during WWII.”
  • Jacquie: Jacquie is reading The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline.
  • Libby: Libby has just read Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara, just watched Going Postal and is listening to the music CD The Outsiders by Eric Church.
  • Paula: Paula recently read The Light in the Ruins by Chris Bohjalian, a historical mystery taking place in 1943 Italy.
  • Marie: Marie has recently shared that she will be re-reading her favorite book, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
  • Nancy D.: “I am currently reading My Name is Resolute by Nancy E. Turner.”
  • Maureen: Maureen just finished reading The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh and is currently reading The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman. She is listening to The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult on Playaway and just finished listening to The Ripper by Isabel Allende, courtesy of our digital media catalog!

How the School Reading list Became My Must Reads

I didn’t think I liked YA fiction. I took a class on it in library school and didn’t like many of the books we read. However, the library recently ordered over 100 digital items (downloadable electronic books and audiobooks) from the high school’s Summer Reading lists. These items become available to Waltham patrons through our digital catalog the day after they are purchased. However, we also enter them into our entire catalog so that people can know their different options (print, audiobook, downloadable e-book, and/or downloadable audiobook) when they search for a title. This has been my job for the summer reading items. My reaction to the descriptions of multiple of the realistic fiction titles has been “Ooh, I might have to read that.” Even though my teens were half my lifetime ago, the experiences of and challenges faced by the protagonists in these stories speak to issues I have faced and/or continue to face. I have already stayed up too late reading a couple of them.

If you want to try these or other items from our digital collection you will need to sign in with your card number and PIN number. If you don’t have a PIN already you can set it up through the Minuteman catalog or ask a staff member to assist you. **Note: It is best to sign in right when you enter the digital catalog because many of the items on the list are only available to Waltham patrons and you will not see them listed until you sign in.

Posted by Lisa

This Week’s Best Seller Lists

Here are the links to the best seller lists for the week of May 18, 2014.

Fiction with Local Flavor

Members of the library staff have been spending the last year reading books relating to various genres, so that we can help suggest the perfect books for you to read! This last month, we read novels that take place in New England. Here is a sampling:

Boston Marathon Bombing — One Year Later

(Michael Dwyer/AP Photo, image from

One year ago today, I was at the Red Sox game with my father and my good friend getting very excited about a walk off win. My father and I, still ecstatic about the game, walked over to Kenmore Square to cheer on the Marathon runners. Suddenly I saw police officers run towards Commonwealth Avenue, which was followed by a mysterious text from my friend (who had left the area after the game), asking, “You didn’t go to the finish line, did you?” When I answered that I was on the marathon route in Kenmore, she said, “Good. Did you hear about the explosion? Be safe!” Eventually, the race was stopped in the Kenmore area, and we were evacuated, instructed by emergency personnel and National Guard to walk away, not towards Downtown, and to stay away from Beacon Street in Brookline for several blocks. Walking through Brookline, we heard different stories about explosions, then bombs in Copley Square, a fire at the John F Kennedy Library in Dorchester, and various threats in the city (thus the evacuation of parts of Beacon Street). It wasn’t until I got home, that I heard the actual facts, there had been two bombs at the finish line, and that the other stories were either not related or not credible. As mildly confusing as my day had been, I could not (and still can’t) imagine the horror of those directly impacted and what they must be going through today. If you are reflecting on the first anniversary, here are some relevant resources.

posted by Laura

New Digital Books Available!

Browsing for something to download from the Digital Media Catalog? Log in first - at the beginning of your browsing session - instead of when you’re ready to check out.

The Minuteman Library Network offers many titles for all library users to access. And, individual libraries can also add titles just for the residents of their city or town, called Advantage titles. The Digital Media Catalog only shows titles that you, the browser, can access, so logging in opens up all those residents-only Advantage titles!

And a new big batch of Advantage titles was added today! After you log in, click on the New Titles link under Featured Collections. You’ll see what’s been added to the site most recently.

Someone beat you to something that looks good? Place a hold and get an email when it’s ready for you. Don’t be intimidated by a list that looks long, place that hold – it alerts library staff that there’s demand among our Waltham patrons! And, since Advantage titles are only available to Waltham residents, that list often isn’t as long as it looks!

Need something today? Place a hold for something to arrive soon, but then click the button to see Available Now. That’ll save you the roller coaster of selecting a title only to find out someone else is using it now. Narrow it down to eBook or eAudiobooks, whichever your preference, and now you have a more manageable batch to browse.

Haven’t tried digital books yet? eBooks and eAudiobooks are super versatile and completely portable. Check out a few of these guides for getting started!

How to Enjoy eBooks on your Smartphone or Tablet and on your eReader

How to Enjoy eBooks on Kindle devices Free Kindle Apps and Kindle Fire

Getting Started with Android

Getting started with iOS (iPad, iPhone & iPod touch)

Once you’ve got the one-time set-up stuff done, visit the Digital Media Catalog over and over for new books any time!

Happy Downloading, Everyone!


Blind Date With Books

During the month of February, the library hosted a blind date with a book display. There were personal ad type clues on each title to give a hint of who the “mystery date” might be. On Friday, February 28th at noon, we selected three lucky winners by picking out three Blind Date Evaluation forms at random. The first prize winner, Jessica Perry, got a gift certificate for $75 at Biagio.

We want to thank Biagio for giving us two additional 20 dollar gift cards at no additional charge. The manager told me that he loves to support the Waltham Public Library.

Circulation staff member Bela Kaul and Laura Bernheim, Head Reference Librarian, get ready to select the winners!

Circulation staff members Jeanette Curnyn and Bela Kaul select a winner!

Louise Goldstein, Head Circulation Librarian, calls the lucky winners.

Library Director Kate Tranquada offers first prize gift card to Jessica Perry

Head Reference Librarian Laura Bernheim gives Biagio gift card to prize winner Susan Walsh.

Library staff member Pat O’Leary presents Biagio gift card to second prize winner Athena Allen.
submitted by: Louise

« Previous Page Next Page »