Looking for a good read? Our staff always have something to suggest … read on!

Dianne's Favorites of the Year

As the calendar winds down, our Director, Dianne Hathaway always selects her favorite book of the year. In 2021 she read just under 60 books, still off her pre-COVID pace. She had many favorites (see below), and after weeks of pondering, the one that rose to the top is The Guncle by Steven Rowley!

  • A Measure of Belonging: Writers of Color on the New American South by Cinelle Barnes

  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab

  • The Prince of Mournful Thoughts and Other Stories by Caroline Kim

  • West With Giraffes by Lynda Rutledge

  • Where the World Ends by Geraldine McCaughrean

  • The Guncle by Steven Rowley

  • The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw

  • Bring Your Baggage and Don’t Pack Light by Hellen Ellis

  • The Exiles by Christina Baker Kline

  • Call Me Esteban by Lejla Kalamujic

  • The Shell Collector: Stories by Anthony Doerr

Introducing Pick of the Week Short Videos

New in 2021! Brought to you by Goffstown TV and our staff – “Librarian’s Pick of the Week” short videos. Catch each episode on YouTube and see what titles are on our minds.

These short videos also air on local access Comcast Community Ch. 16 (Goffstown).

Staff Picks

Staff Picks are a year-round display at the Library that you can browse when you visit our online catalog, too. Scroll down to Staff Reads whenever you visit www.goffstownlibrary.com/search.

For Further Reading

It’s the most wonderful time of year! We’re not talking about kids jingle-belling – we’re excited about couches, fuzzy blankets, cocoa, and
holiday-themed books we wait all year to read. Find seasonal books, movies & music on display at the Library – and get your cozy on!

Search the catalog, or stop by and pick up something new today.

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Snowed in? Away for the holidays? You have lots of options when it comes to getting cozy with a good book. You can access our digital resources 24/7 at www.goffstownlibrary.com/247-library.

We’re very excited about streaming holiday music straight from www.hoopladigital.com – no holds, no waiting!

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With the Libby by OverDrive app, it’s easy to pick out a new e-book, e-audiobook, or magazine at anytime, anywhere. Even when school’s out or the Library may be closed, the e-library is always open. You can see what’s available on OverDrive, and get started right now at https://nh.overdrive.com/nh-goffstown/content.

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Read, learn, listen, and discover with CloudLibrary e-books and e-audiobooks, available at ebook.yourcloudlibrary.com/library/GMILCS/Featured

cloudLibrary logo with lights

Visit www.goffstownlibrary.com/digital for more information.

blinking holiday lights

It Came From the Library

There’s something spooky for everyone at the library, from R.L. Stine to Stephen King. Whether it’s a classic, or a new thriller, you can find what you’re looking for on display or by searching the catalog – try searching for: “ghost“, “horror“, “scary“, or “zombies“.

Real Life Monsters

The scariest things in this life aren’t fiction – they’re cold, harsh reality. After all, Stephen King Famously wrote: “Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.”

These titles feature non-fiction villains, criminals, and real life monsters.

Dying for a Good Book?

Some more suggestions for titles that may have you sleeping with the lights on:

Digital Scares

Online, the thrilling treats are always available! From charming Halloween titles for kids to cult, indie, and new horror for adults, check out one of our digital providers and discover something for everyone to enjoy. Learn more at www.goffstownlibrary.com/digital/.

Sharing stories important to us means sharing a part of ourselves. Books reach across boundaries and build connections between readers. Censorship, on the other hand, creates barriers.

The books featured during Banned Books Week have all been targeted for removal or restriction in libraries and schools. The ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 156 challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2020. By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship.

Purple and Green BBW logo

Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.

Celebrate the right to read. The Goffstown Public Library supports your Constitutional right to access the information you want and hopes you will exercise that right by reading a challenged book. Visit the Library to interact with this week’s banned book displays, check out a book, or participate in one of the special activities on the calendar.

Banned Books Week is an annual week-long event celebrating the freedom to read, highlighting the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community – librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types – in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2020 on YouTube

Celebrate Banned Books Week September 26 - October 2

Some people find the name “Banned Books Week” confounding. Banned Books Week doesn’t promote banning books, rather, it was created to alert readers everywhere that literary repression is still happening. Banned Books Week tips a hat to the continued vigilance and advocacy through which the number of challenged books far exceeds the number of books which are actually banned.

The origins of Banned Books Week lie in the 1982 Supreme Court ( 4-3) ruling in Island Trees School District v. Pico. The Court determined that the removal of books from a school library by a school board (in response to complaints about objectionable content) violated students’ first amendment rights by impinging on their freedom to read. The Court’s majority established libraries as places of “voluntary inquiry,” places which embrace the idea that there are no ideas so dangerous that they cannot be discussed or read about, even if many people find them unorthodox, unconventional, or distasteful. Protective covenants established in the Island Trees decision reverberated throughout public libraries, publishing, bookselling and journalism. Candid dialogue between professionals in all of these fields led to the establishment of the coalition which created Banned Books Week. Their website is www.bannedbooksweek.org.

Authors whose work has been challenged comprise a Who’s Who of the literary world while also making strange bedfellows; only in censorship would you find Stephen King, Harper Lee, L. Ron Hubbard, Toni Morrison, J.D. Salinger, Shakespeare, Danielle Steel and William Faulkner keeping company. Since the 1990s, The American Library Association’s Office of Intellectual Freedom compiles an annual list of titles which have been most frequently challenged and/or banned (http://www.ala.org/advocacy/bbooks/frequentlychallengedbooks). These lists can be a reflection of imminent social sea change; eight of this year’s top ten banned and challenged titles feature LGBTQIA+ content. The ever-increasing popularity of e-books begs the question of whether censorship will become harder to defend against in future; while digital materials cannot be hidden, defaced or burned, it only takes destructive technological know-how, a software update or a power outage to render them inaccessible.

Word cloud of reasons books have been challenged.

For those further interested in Banned Books Week, we suggest two informative videos on YouTube : Ask Me Anything About Censorship with Kristin Pekoll, geared towards adult public library patrons, and Banned Books 101, aimed at students in grades 6-12. As always, you can get more information at the Goffstown Public Library, or contact Director Dianne Hathaway directly through dianneh@goffstownlibrary.com.

The American Library Association has been tracking challenges since 1990, for more information, visit https://www.ala.org/advocacy/bbooks.

The 2021 summer reading theme was Tails and Tales where we celebrated animals and stories about them. Every age group participated – Adults 17+, Tweens and Teens ages 10-18, and Children preschool ages and up. Our staff had a great Summer Experience planned, with many events held in our new outdoor space. This summer, our programs were hybrid to meet the needs of everyone.

Fabulous! This summer you logged:

Reading Minutes = 23,185
Book Reviews = 13
Activities Completed = 107

Tweens  & Teens
Reading Minutes = 46,651
Book Reviews = 22
Activities Completed = 182

Books Read  = 135
Book Reviews = 51
Activities Completed = 126

And these don’t include the To-Go bags and projects you picked up and crafted with during July & August!

Adults, kids, and teens read, participated, and completed challenges for their chances to win.

Here’s what the adult prize winners had to say:

“My summer has been enriched in many ways by actively participating in the Goffstown Public Library “Tails and Tales” Summer reading program. Keeping track of the books that I read and writing short summaries by utilizing the “read squared” app was fun, challenging, and an incentive for me to step out of my comfort zone into the online technology world…Thanks to the GPL staff for always being helpful and encouraging! Learning new skills and enjoying lots of reading was a productive and relaxing way to spend time this summer.
P.S. How exciting to be chosen as a winner of the compost bin! It’s always been on my bucket list to purchase one 🙂 Thank you.” – Catherine C.

“The Adult Summer Experience program was a wonderful experience! It gave me a structure and routine to include reading with my family each day. We either listened to audiobooks or took turns reading a novel out loud. My favorite part was the conversations and questions that came out of the reading. And, of course, we were really motivated to earn points.” – Katherine R.

“Even though I didn’t complete my goal, the library program motivated me to read some new books this summer. Most summers I read comfortable classics from my collection. But I was trying to hit the reading target so I read a lot of new stuff. Thank you for the push!” – Lauren Doukas

Adult Summer Prize Winners

The Children’s Room had a total of 65 participants track their reading and other activities through our online READsquared platform this summer. They did a fabulous job earning points by reading, participating in Library programs and completing fun Mission activities. Nine lucky participants received raffle prizes, too!

Teen raffle winners took home Art or Cooking themed gift baskets, or an amazon.com gift card, and Children’s raffle prize winners chose from activity bundles around themes of Magic, Dinosaurs, Pokemon, Outdoor Fun, and Art, an amazon.com gift card, or a donation of supplies to a local animal shelter in their name.


IMLS logoThe state-wide READsquared subscription for NH public libraries has been funded by the FY20 IMLS CARES Act grant, through the New Hampshire State Library. In addition, our Summer Experience was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the New Hampshire State Library.