News from the Pierson Library

Sarah Snowe

Sarah Snowe

Sarah Snowe joins Pierson Library staff: We are delighted to welcome Sarah Snowe as the new part-time Children’s Library assistant. Sarah will be working on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday afternoons, helping Katie Bosley with programs for our younger patrons. A resident of Shelburne, Sarah also works part-time as the Children’s Librarian at the Johnson Public Library. As a mother of two teenagers, she has particular insight into what appeals to young people. Sarah is looking forward to working with the people in town she already knows and meeting others. Lara Keenan, the Library director, said she was very happy to find an enthusiastic local resident who will bring her diverse experience to benefit our library community. Please introduce yourself to Sarah when you are next in the library.

Calling all opera buffs: If you are a fan of The Met Live in HD broadcasts shown at area theaters and on PBS, then get ready for the upcoming airing of Tosca. Shelburne resident and opera expert Toni Hill will discuss the story, the music, and key elements of The Met’s production at the Pierson on Thursday, Nov. 7 at 3 pm. Your enjoyment of the broadcast is bound to be enhanced by the new knowledge you gain at the discussion.

What our Book Clubs are reading: The Tuesday night Book Club is currently reading “The Dinner” by Herman Koch. A Booklist review described the novel as follows: “The story starts off casually and unassumingly with a dinner between two brothers, one running for prime minister of the Netherlands, along with their wives at one of Amsterdam’s finest establishments. The other brother, as narrator, sharply ridicules every absurd element of the night to great effect. But just as everything settles in, Koch pivots, and these pointed laughs quickly turn to discussion about their teenage boys and something they’ve done. And it’s at this point when readers will feel two distinct ideologies forming and will face the novel’s vital question: which position to side with? Koch’s organic style makes for a continuously engaging read that, if anything, leaves readers wanting more.” If you are intrigued by this description, come by the library to pick up a copy and join the discussion on Tuesday, Nov. 19 at 6:30 pm in the library.

The Wednesday morning Book Club is currently reading “The Devil in the White City” by Erik Larson. A reviewer for described the book as follows: “Author Erik Larson imbues the incredible events surrounding the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair with such drama that readers may find themselves checking the book’s categorization to be sure that The Devil in the White City is not, in fact, a highly imaginative novel. Larson tells the stories of two men: Daniel H. Burnham, the architect responsible for the fair’s construction, and H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a charming doctor. Burnham’s challenge was immense. In a short period of time, he was forced to overcome the death of his partner and numerous other obstacles to construct the famous ‘White City’ around which the fair was built. His efforts to complete the project, and the fair’s incredible success, are skillfully related along with entertaining appearances by such notables as Buffalo Bill Cody, Susan B. Anthony, and Thomas Edison. The activities of the sinister Dr. Holmes, who is believed to be responsible for scores of murders around the time of the fair, are equally remarkable. He devised and erected the World’s Fair Hotel, complete with crematorium and gas chamber, near the fairgrounds and used the event as well as his own charismatic personality to lure victims. Combining the stories of an architect and a killer in one book, mostly in alternating chapters, seems like an odd choice but it works. The magical appeal and horrifying dark side of 19th-century Chicago are both revealed through Larson’s skillful writing.”  If this appeals to you, stop by at the library for a copy and join the discussion on Wednesday, Nov. 20 at 10:30 am.

Online Continuing Education: Free and available on the Pierson Library website! Have you always wanted to take a cooking class or learn more about history or master computer basics or explore another topic, but never had the time or money to actually enroll? We’ve made it simple for you. Go to class on your own schedule on-line any time, 24/7. Just go to the Pierson Library website (, click on eLibrary, and then on Universal Class which offers more than 500 non-credit continuing education courses. You may enroll in up to five courses and have six months to finish each one. Each course has a real instructor who you may communication with by e-mail. Choose what interests you from a long list of topics that include accounting, arts & photography, cooking, crafts & hobbies, do-it-yourself projects, entrepreneurship, finance, health & medicine, history, home & garden, law, mathematics, pet & animal care, psychology, religions, science, and many, many more.

Trick-or-Treating at the Pierson: Don’t be frightened when you visit the library on Halloween! The staff will be appropriately attired for handing out goodies to our young patrons during the day and evening until we close at 8 pm.

Tonight! Join us Thursday, Oct. 24, from 6 to 8 pm in the library for a reception honoring the artists who created the incredible quilts on display at the library in October and November. Each quilt represents the artist’s response to the challenge of expressing their concept of traditional Vermont culture in an original quilt.


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