Local libraries ready for summer readers

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Perfect beach day essentials include sunblock, a towel and a book of your choice. Don’t know what to read? Leave that to the professionals at the Center Moriches and Mastics-Moriches-Shirley libraries, who are gearing up for their respective Summer Reading Programs and are eager to share their must-have books.

Center Moriches Free Public Library

This summer, library patrons will record their summer reads online using the READsquared program, according to Angela Portal, adult programming librarian. Readers are given raffle tickets for their participation and entered to win prizes including AirPods, a subscription to Universal Yums and $50 gift cards for local stores.

Portal said the hottest summer reads for adults include “The Maidens” by Alex Michaelides; “Dream Girl” by Laura Lippman; and “Couple Found Slain: After a Family Murder” by Mikita Brottman, a true crime.

According to Dominique Nason, children’s librarian, her department is gearing up for weekly contests and giveaways throughout the summer, adding that young readers are encouraged to log their read time on READsquared.

“Parents of young children can log the number of books read together, and school-aged readers can log how many minutes they have read through the READsquared app on their device,” said Nason.

What books will children enjoy this summer?

“Our littlest readers will enjoy our Indestructibles books. They are tear-proof, chew-proof, and even waterproof,” Nason said. “Perfect for little hands to enjoy on the beach, or anywhere.”

“I think that many teens will be looking for “We Are Inevitable” by Gayle Forman, a realistic fiction book that will resonate with teens that are facing changes and choices in their lives,” Jessica Ceramello, head of teen services, added.

Ceramello and her department are gearing up for the Battle of the Books, a countywide, inter-library competition between teams of teens who are called on to answer questions based on six different young adult books. This year’s competition will be held on Zoom; meetings will take place throughout the summer until the big event.

Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Library

Kerrilynn Jorgensen, reference and adult services department head, said her favorite aspect of the library’s summer reading program is the reading club’s kickoff party, slated this year for Friday, June 25.

“There is a sense of excitement in the air as kids, teens and adults come into the building and are eager to sign up for the club, all while they eat their free ice cream and walk away with a goody bag of incentives,” she said.

Her pick for the hottest summer read is “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah.

“This book is set to be released as a movie later this fall starring Elle and Dakota Fanning. The book revolves around two sisters struggling to survive the Nazi occupation of France during WWII,” Jorgensen explained.

According to Sylvia Maurer, children and parent services department head, the library’s new approach to summer reading will make it easier and more accessible to all.

“We took away required reading and book counting and just asked children and their families to ‘summer with us.’ We want children to come to the library because they have fun here and it's a place where they can find something they may love to read, not because it’s an assignment,” she said.

Maurer said she is most excited to read “Thank You, Teacher from the Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle, as part of the library’s Teachers’ Story Corner, where teachers from the district come to the library to read books aloud every Wednesday.

Teens will be able to showcase their skills in a talent show, scheduled for July 30, according to Erika Irish, teen services department head. They will also be offered monthly Nose in a Book boxes, featuring some of the summer’s best reads beginning with July's book, “The Name of the Star” by Maureen Johnson. Additionally, Irish said this summer teens everywhere will read “One of Us Is Lying” by Karen McManus.

*For all library summer programs please visit the Center Moriches Library at www.centermoricheslibrary.org and the Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Library at www.communitylibrary.org

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