Upper Cape Camera Club Summer Exhibit 2020 at FPL

In May of 2013, the Falmouth Public Library installed a railing for displaying art in the Adult Collections Room. The first exhibit was the work of the Upper Cape Camera Club. The Library has hosted the UCCC every July ever since. Not wanting to miss the fabulous work of this group we are presenting the 2020 Exhibit here in our digital collections.  

The Upper Cape Camera Club is a group of photographers whose mission is to provide an opportunity to develop skills, learn new skills, and share their images in a friendly supportive environment. From beginners to professionals, they welcome all who are interested in photography. To learn more about the group, visit their website here.

Reference Librarian Donna Burgess Retires

We are sad to report that our long time colleague, Donna Burgess, has retired as of this month. We, of course, are happy for Donna and her husband who we trust will be back in travel mode once we get to the other side of the current pandemic. They were lucky enough to have spent all of last January in Italy!

As our Director, Linda Collins, wrote: “I particularly appreciated her calm demeanor and ability to manage all patrons in a way that made them feel they were the highlight of her day. Her willingness to take on special tasks at a moment’s notice was impressive. Who else would offer to give a group of visiting nuns from Ireland, a full library tour beginning at 5:00 pm on a Saturday night.”

Donna began as a full time reference librarian, but then went to part-time. She wore many hats at the Falmouth Public Library, including overseeing the teen room at one point in her career here, which included, among other things, an amazing outside carnival! Donna also helped to run the library’s fiction book club for many, many years, and spearheaded many library programs. Donna’s good humor and ability to multi-task were both valued traits during her years at the library. We know she helped many of you with reference questions of all kinds. If you remember how she might have helped you, please let us know.

We wish her all the best, and hope to have a wonderful celebration of her time at FPL once we are able.

Jill Erickson
Head of Reference & Adult Services

Fireworks Without the Fireworks!

We know that everyone (except dogs and cats) is very disappointed that the annual fireworks will not be happening this year. So we wanted to offer you another option for your 4th of July party! Did you know that we have a BBC Sound Effects Library on CD? We have certainly noticed a recent uptick in use, so we know some of you must be working on podcasts at home, and using the BBC Sound Effects Library for special moments!  The complete collection includes 60 CDs packed full of sounds. You can find the second set, with a full list of sound effects here.

Here are some of the subjects this collection covers: transport, weather, ships & boats, livestock, crowds, cats, emergency, babies, cars, and water. And, as I have mentioned, fireworks, which is volume 18 and is called BANG! This CD includes a chrysanthemum fountain (fizz), a retrojet fountain (fizz crackle), crackerjack fountain (crackle), mine of serpents (fizz pop), roman candle (fizz pop pop pop), thunderflash (bang), rocket, screamer, Chinese fire cracker with indistinct speech, ground mine (thump bang) with indistinct speech, Catherine wheel with indistinct speech, and Firework Night, atmosphere in suburban England. Now, these fireworks are not nearly as glorious as what we normally hear on a Falmouth 4th of July, but they might just add a little sparkle to your barbecue!

Speaking of Falmouth’s 4th of July, you might also be interested in knowing that the Falmouth Fireworks Committee has created a mask in honor of the 2020 Fireworks. You can find more information at falmouthfireworks.org. We concur with what they have written: “The year 2020 will long be remembered for its unprecedented challenges and for how we as Falmouth citizens came together during this time. We look forward to the day when we will once again welcome everyone back to the fireworks at Falmouth Heights – a day on which we will celebrate not only the Fourth of July, but the spirt of Falmouth and the resilience of our community.”

Outside pickup has started!

During this first phase of a gradual reopening plan, there will be no public access to the inside of the library buildings.  Outside Pickup is available at the main library, at the Katharine Lee Bates entrance doors. Items should be requested in advance, either through the library’s online CLAMS catalog or with staff help by phone (508) 457-2555 ext. 2901.  Requests may also be made via email to info@falmouthpubliclibrary.org or via our text-a-librarian service. Text us by texting 66746 and starting your question with “askfpl”
As with ALL requests, you will be notified when your item is ready for pickup either by phone or email. The soonest you will be able to get your item will be the day after you make your request.

Hours of Operation for Outside Pickup:
Mon, Thu, Fri, Sat: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Tue & Wed: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Items available for Outside Pickup include books, audiobooks, magazines (including the current issue), DVDs, and music CDs from the Childrens, Young Adult and Adult collections from the Main Library building only. Specialized library items such as newspapers, Youth Services story kits, and museum passes are not available for outside pickup at this time.
The East Falmouth branch is closed to the public. Please call 508-548-6340 with questions.
Curbside Hours:
Monday & Tuesday: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Wednesday: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Thursday: 1:00 PM – 7:00 PM
The North Falmouth branch is closed to the public. Please call 508-563-2922 with questions.
Lobby Hours:
Monday & Friday: 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Tuesday & Wednesday: 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
The library is unable to accept fines/fee payments during outside transactions.
Due to COVID-19 concerns, material donations of any kind cannot be accepted at this time.
Following return, items will remain on a patron’s account during a three-day quarantine period.
The Falmouth Public Library reference staff is ready to help with any questions you might have. Our telephone is 508-457-2555, press 7 to reach a reference librarian. We are answering phones during the following hours:
Monday 10-5:30
Tuesday 10-8:30
Wednesday 10-8:30
Thursday 10-5:30
Friday 10-5:30
Saturday 10-5:30

Sister Novelists: Emily and Anne Bronte

After listening to Jill on the Point with Mindy Todd discussing Books about Sisters (03/27/20) and jotting down their recommendations of books about sisters, I thought about books by sisters. Although sisters usually share a similar background and familial history, they can become quite different individuals. The Bronte sisters shared an insular and somewhat dark and violent family life. Much of this is echoed in Wuthering Heights and the Tenant of Wildfell Hall- the former I read when snowed in and the latter while sheltering in place. However, in my casual, non-academic reading of these novels, I found two very different heroines with equally different fates. Perhaps, the differences between Cathy Earnshaw and Helen Graham speaks of that of the sisters, Emily and Anne?

(by staff member Rebekah)


Update, 5/19/20-message from our director

A message from our director, Linda Collins:

“As the library develops its plans to reopen, we are taking guidance from state leaders, the Mass Board of Library Commissioners, our town administration and health agent, and the CLAMS Library network. We are proceeding very carefully, gradually reducing current restrictions. The first step will be to offer curbside pickup of requested materials. We look forward to the return of the inter-library delivery services that make more materials available to you. When we do reopen the building to the public we will have limited seating keeping people at an acceptable distance from one another. Toys and other high touch items will be removed from the children’s room. We may not be able to offer programs in the same manner as we have in the past but we are exploring creative ways to connect with our library patrons. I ask for everyone’s patience as we move forward in a safe and thoughtful manner towards a full resumption of library services.”

Even More Digital Staff Picks For You

This is the third in a series of blogs listing digital resources recommended by Falmouth Public Library staff.  This eclectic list of books, concerts and movies have all been personally enjoyed by library staff – We hope you enjoy them too! 

What You’ll need:
CLAMS card number
  (Don’t have one?  Get a temporary eCard here.)
CLAMS card PIN (Need to set or reset one? Go to falmouthpubliclibrary.org and click on “my account”.)
New to Hoopla?  Here is the help section.
New to Overdrive?   Here are “Getting Started” directions from Overdrive.

Big Tip for Overdrive:  if all of the copies in our CLAMS network are checked out, click on “Partner Libraries” in eensy weensy print at the top of the Overdrive homepage.  Search each network separately.  It’s a little repetitive, we know, but hopefully in the future separate searches won’t be necessary. 
Big Tip for Qello and IndieFlix: These are two platforms offered by RB Digital, along with two other platforms: Great Courses and Acorn TV.  All four platforms share the same log in information and you can be logged in to only one platform at a time.  A log in lasts one week.   When the week is over, you can log in to the same platform again or a new one. 

Hoopla: eBooks & one eAudiobook

The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual by Barbara Pleasant (eBook)
I thought I had a black thumb when it came to plant care, but this excellent book has given me the tools to change that. I have learned how to observe plants carefully and see their responses to my care – rather than simply following a schedule or set of generic instructions. 

I am thoroughly enjoying the learning process and watching my new plants grow.  Two green thumbs up! – Faith

Foraging for Wild Foods by David Squire (eBook)
This ebook is great for using now that it’s springtime. It’s so much fun to get out in nature and search for edible wild plants. So many plants are just starting to sprout up all around us. Foraging guidelines, plant descriptions and possible locations as well as how to use each plant are featured in this ebook. Take it with you on your walks. – AnneMarie

The Herbal Kitchen by Kami McBride (eBook)
This is a great ebook to start learning how to incorporate herbals into your everyday recipes for added health and wellness. Download it onto your computer pick a recipe, buy your herbs or forage for them then and take it to the kitchen and create! – Annemarie

Invisible Women by Caroline Criado-Perez (both eBook and eAudiobook)
I consider myself a reasonably educated feminist, and this audiobook, read by the author, has kept me enthralled in part because of the quick, smart writing, but also because it has opened my eyes to gender biases so baked in the cake, so a part of “normal” that they had never occurred to me.  Treating men as the default and women as atypical in data collection/research has lead to incredible disparities in healthcare, education, public policy and media presence.  Perez investigates these flawed practices, and gets to a root cause of gender inequality that is both shockingly simple and infuriatingly pervasive.  Meg. K.

OverDrive: eBooks & eAudiobooks

The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin (both eBook and eAudiobook)
I could not stop reading this book.  The feelings of dread all the way through as you got to know and love at least some of these siblings, the vividness of the settings, the questions it raised – I wanted more.   – Sue

Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan (eBook)
is a historical fiction book set in Mexico and California during the Great Depression of the 1930’s.  A middle grade/young adult novel, it has appeal for adults too.  Reminiscent of The Grapes of Wrath, but much gentler, it illustrates the hardships faced by migrant workers and the adjustments required of immigrants.  Written in a lyrical style, Esperanza Rising is a heartwarming tale. – Sandra

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders (both eBook & eAudiobook)
Lincoln in the Bardo is a novel unlike anything I’ve read before.  It is set in a graveyard over the course of one night, following the death of Abraham Lincoln’s son Willie. The voices of multiple ghosts narrate their individual stories, as they observe the grief stricken president sitting by his son’s body, unable to part.  The author manages to deliver this tale with humor as well as pathos, and in addition he provides some history of Lincoln’s term in the White House during the Civil War, through quotes from actual as well as fictional sources.  This book is worth picking up.
– Sandra

Qello Concerts

Queen:  Rock Montreal
If you love Queen (does anybody not??), this is an amazing show.  A full 1981 concert, when many would say they were at their peak. And Quello has many more Queen videos, including “Live at the Rainbow” from 1974, “Live at Wembley Stadium” from 1986, an amazing multi-band Freddie Mercury tribute concert, and several documentaries. For hours of Queen-listening bliss! – Sue

J Mascis Live at Spiegeltent Festival
Remember J Mascis? The lead singer/guitarist of Amherst’s own Dinosaur Jr.? Well, the warbly troubadour of the early 1990s alt-rock scene is still at it, only now he’s traded in his feedback-drenched electric guitar for a plug-in acoustic. The songs remain the same, though — vulnerable, heartbreaking, occasionally biting, quintessentially quirky. In fact, most of what he’s playing here are classic Dinosaur Jr. songs, along with a cool cover of Edie Brickell’s ‘Circle’.

Recommended for folks who wondered what Bob Dylan would sound like singing Charlie Brown’s word bubbles.  – Josh


Shoplifters (Hoopla)
It’s exciting to see more films from Asia getting wider distribution, like “Parasite,” this year’s Oscar winner for best picture.  I saw “Shoplifters” a couple of years ago in Boston and I loved it.  It’s the story of a makeshift family gaming the system during Japan’s recession.  It’s funny, heartwarming, realistic, thought-provoking, timely and the characters are memorable.  Everything I want in a movie.  – D.D.

Mrs. Miniver (IndieFlix)
An oldie, but goodie starring Greer Garson and directed by William Wyler. Winner of the Oscar for Best Picture in 1942. Mrs. Miniver is the story of an unassuming British housewife in rural England and how her life is touched by World War II. It’s not a war movie in the sense of lots of action, but the effects of war on individuals and families. Based on the novel by Jan Struther., this one’s on lots of the “100 Best Movies” lists. Available through Indieflix. – D.D.


Are You a ‘Gateway Reader’?

My high school’s D.A.R.E. program (a well-meaning, misguided, state-funded attempt to keep kids off drugs) used to use the term ‘gateway drug’ to describe any drug that appeared harmless (cigarettes, pot, leaning in too close to one’s magic markers), but inevitably led to other, more dangerous narcotics (crack, crystal meth, permanent markers). In recent years, I’ve begun to rework the ‘gateway’ moniker to fit the needs of my own vice of choice — books.

Gateway Books are books that are so darned good that they make you want to read any and all the other books name-dropped within.

One of the first gateway books I remember coming across was S.E. Hinton’s ‘The Outsiders’. Not only did I pick up some random Robert Frost in hopes of finding ‘Stay Silver’ and ‘Stay Bronze’ (his lesser works), I also rented the videotape of ‘Gone With The Wind’ (the book looked too long and too boring to my fourteen year old self — and still does!). A decade or so later while reading all of the Elmore Leonard novels, I had an ongoing ‘secondary syllabus’ made up of all the crime fiction paperbacks Leonard had his characters reading.

The ultimate Gateway Book for me, though, has been Mike Davis’ ‘City of Quartz’. Davis, a Los Angeles historian with a photographic memory and a gift for finding the threads that bind seemingly disparate subjects together, had me watching film noir classics like ‘Detour’ and ‘The Big Sleep’, gobbling up the South Central-centered pulp fiction of Chester Himes, the dark, satiric, science fiction of Aldous Huxley, and becoming a salivating fan boy at the altar of Joan Didion’s 1960s suicidal California travel lit. I’m not exaggerating — I literally spent an entire year exploring the books, movies and music mentioned in ‘City of Quartz’. If that ain’t the obsessive-compulsive behavior of an addict, I don’t know what is. [we have since ordered ‘City of Quartz’ for the library, and hope to have it soon!]

How about you? Do you have any ‘Gateway Books’ that sent you tumbling deeper and deeper down the reading rabbit hole? If so, please share them in the comments!
This blog written by Josh M.
Link to eBooks in Overdrive where available, here!
Elmore Leonard (some available in Overdrive, via CLAMS or other MA library networks!)
Robert Frost-bio, and links to some of his poems, here.
Aldous Huxley, ‘Brave New World’ ebooks here.




More Digital Staff Picks For You

Several weeks ago we posted a blog listing ebooks and eaudiobooks recommended by Falmouth Public Library staff.  Here is another eclectic list of recommended titles.  They have all been personally enjoyed in the past month by library staff – We hope you enjoy them too! 

Click on the links to be brought to the title in either Overdrive or Hoopla, our digital book resources.   

What You’ll need:
CLAMS card number
  (Don’t have one?  Get a temporary eCard here.)
CLAMS card PIN (Need to set or reset one? Go to falmouthpubliclibrary.org and click on “my account”.)
New to Hoopla?  Here is the help section.
New to Overdrive?  
Here are “Getting Started” directions from Overdrive. 

Big Tip for Overdrive:  if all of the copies in our CLAMS network are checked out, click on “Partner Libraries” in eensy weensy print at the top of the Overdrive homepage.  Search each network separately.  It’s a little repetitive, we know, but hopefully in the future separate searches won’t be necessary. 

Staff Picks

The Neopolitan Quartet: My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name, Those Who Leave & Those Who Stay, the Story of the Lost Child,
novels by Elena Ferrante
I loved the Neopolitan novels so much, that as soon as I finished one, I began to eagerly anticipate the publication of the next. 

The salient feature of the series is the lifelong relationship between the two best friends, the narrator, Elena, and her “brilliant friend,” Lila, with both of whom I felt quite intimate.  I also enjoyed getting to know the other characters, especially those in Napels. – S.H.
(Available as ebooks in Overdrive)

Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini
Written by the author of The Kite Runner, this is a small book with a large message. A father writes a letter to his son about the dangers of life lived in a perilous part of the world and the voyage they soon will undertake.  He also imparts his thoughts about life’s many rewards.
The words are lyrical and full of meanings, not just for the author’s son, but for every reader.  – C.L.
(Available as an ebook in Overdrive)

The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
Romantic comedy is not a genre I read highly, but since I prefer lighter fare with audio, I gave it a go (as a digital download on Overdrive.) 

Spoken by the alternating voices of the two protagonists in the form of post-it notes and text messages, it was the perfect listen to accompany a walk.  I liked the banter between the quirky characters and the imaginative style and plot.  Though the final outcome was predictable from the start, the story kept me guessing and wanting to hear more.  -S.H.
(Available as an ebook and an eaudiobook in Overdrive)

Over the Top  by Jonathan Van Ness 
This is one of those “you’ll laugh and cry” books.  It deals with difficult topics (like abuse and addiction) but I put it down feeling inspired and uplifted.  It reads like talking with a great friend, and Van Ness reminds us that the anxieties and struggles of learning to live in this world are universal.  – M. K.
(Available as an ebook and an eaudiobook in Overdrive)

The American Story:  conversations with master historians
by David Rubenstein
I highly recommend this book – it has “bite-sized” conversations with well-known historians about some really interesting figures and key moments in history. You might be satisfied with learning just a little about these people and events contained in this book, – or it may “whet your appetite to delve into their full-sized” biographies.”  – Carrie
(Available as an ebook in Overdrive)

Murder in the Mill Race by E.C.R. Lorac
The British Library Crime Classics- Poisoned Pen Press
As a lover of mysteries, especially from the Golden Age, I was delighted to discover this collection of mysteries back in print from British authors not as well-known as Agatha Christie or Dorothy Sayers. We have many titles available in Falmouth. – R.W
(Available as an ebook in Hoopla)

I also recently read and enjoyed:
The Dead Shall Be Raised and the Murder of a Quack by George Bellairs – R.W.
(Available as an ebook in Hoopla)

Christy by Catherine Marshall
An inspirational story of a young idealistic woman’s first year as a teacher in Cutter Gap, a rural community in the Appalachian mountains of Tennessee. Perfect for readers who enjoyed The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Michele Richardson or Jojo Moyes’ The Giver of Stars. – R.W.|
(Available as an ebook in Overdrive)

A Distance Too Grand by Regina Scott
(Historical fiction) Adventure, danger and romance in a wonderful setting: the Grand Canyon of 1871. Reader’s will find much to love. – L.W
(Available as an ebook in Hoopla)

Bargain! (Short film)
Rebel Wilson fans, check this out. A hilarious short film — 10 minutes — made in 2009, before she hit it big with Bridesmaids. – D. D.
(Available in Indieflix  New to Indieflix?  Indieflix is one of four platforms provided by RBDigital.  The others are Acorn TV, Great Courses and Qello Concerts.  One account logs you into all four platforms.  A log in lasts 1 week.  You can log in to one platform at a time.)

Fashion Climbing by Bill Cunningham (Sandra)
Bill Cunningham’s column in the New York Times, “On the Street with Bill Cunningham,” was a favorite of mine, something to look forward to each week.  The idea of this aging Bostonian bicycling around Manhattan taking pictures of random people on the street struck my fancy, his appearance giving no hint of his interest in fashion.

Cunningham’s memoir, Fashion Climbing, published posthumously, fills in the blanks about his Irish upbringing in Boston, his years at Harvard, first years in New York as a milliner, and later career as a fashion writer and photographer.

Also available at the library are a book of his photos titled On the Street, a documentary called Bill Cunningham’s New York, and another documentary soon to be released.  Any of these will put a smile on your face.  His pleasure in observation of individual style is catching!
(Available as an eaudiobook in Overdrive)

The Dreamers  by Karen Thompson Walker
This book about a fast-spreading and little-understood viral illness—published in early 2019!—reads as nothing short of uncanny during our current COVID-19 crisis (though the disease it imagines is not as ghastly). Though not action-packed, the story has a certain quiet forward motion. The characters are sympathetic, the prose is excellent, and the echoes with our current situation are often startling. – J. G.
(Available as an ebook and eaudiobook in Overdrive)

Barbarian Days: A surfing life by William Finnegan
In this time of no travel and no sports, you can get vicarious thrills from William Finnegan’s fabulous surfing memoir, Barbarian Days. You don’t have to be a surfer to feel like you’re riding the waves with him, from Hawaii to Fiji, Long Island to Madagascar. It’s a great ride and a great read. – D. D.
(Available as an ebook in Overdrive)

The Lost Vintage by Ann Mah (see links below)
Everything one could hope for in a novel: a sensual and heartbreaking story of family secrets, lost love and retribution that unfolds in the magical vineyards of Burgundy. The lost vintage evokes all the pleasures of French food and wine, even as it leaves you hungry for answers.
– L. W.
(Available as an ebook in Overdrive and an audiobook in Hoopla.)

Bonus for National Poetry Month!
Two audiobooks of poetry by Billy Collins available in Overdrive
Aimless Love:  new and selected poems
Billy Collins Live

Smythe Scholarship, 2020



Henry Smythe application forms  are now available for scholarship aid from the Henry Herbert Smythe Trust.  The total amount of the award this year is $33,000.  The committee typically awards more than thirty scholarships.

The application deadline is FRIDAY, May 29, 2020 by 12:00 P.M.  All supporting documents must be submitted by that date in order for the application to be considered.  INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS will not be CONSIDERED.

Decisions will be announced by June 30, 2020.  Applications for the Henry Herbert Smythe Trust Scholarships are available in pdf format here or by emailing jcarrara@falmouth.k12.ma.us  or info@falmouthpubliclibrary.org .  All applications must be postmarked by May 29, 2020 and returned to the Falmouth High School Principal’s Office, 874 Gifford Street, Falmouth, MA 02540 or by emailing your completed application to jcarrara@falmouth.k12.ma.us.

Mr. Smythe’s will stipulates that the money may be used for “boys or girls in Falmouth, Massachusetts.”  A maximum age of 24 years as of January 1, 2020 will apply.  Only applicants who are themselves voting residents of Falmouth (or whose parents are) are eligible for the grants.  Applications cannot be considered from families who have second homes in Falmouth.

Scholarship recipients do not have to be graduates of Falmouth High School; they may have attended a private or parochial school in another town.  Recipients may be pursuing a variety of post-high school educational plans at any accredited college or technical school.

Scholarship money is available both to students currently graduating from high school and to those already started in a post-secondary degree of training program.  However, work beyond a bachelor’s degree cannot be considered for scholarship aid.  Post secondary applicants must submit evidence of current educational progress (most recently completed college transcript as of May 2020).  A copy of your personal grade report for the spring semester can be accepted but an OFFICIAL transcript for the fall must be submitted.  All decisions are made by annual applications; no renewals are automatic.  INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS will not be CONSIDERED.

The trust agreement states that “character be given equal consideration with scholarship,” and evidence of both personal characteristics and school success is asked for on the application forms.  Financial need is a secondary factor in determining recipients.

The committee will continue its practice of limiting scholarships to one per family.  If two children from the same family apply, the committee will decide which seems most deserving of the scholarship.

The rector of St. Barnabas Memorial Church; Superintendent of Schools in Falmouth, Ms. Lori Duerr; and the Principal of Falmouth High School, Ms. Mary W. Gans are established by the conditions of the trust as the committee which governs the granting of scholarships and which makes the final selections.   Bank of America administers the trust fund left by Henry Herbert Smythe.