As soon as the grateful audiences for our six outdoor summer concerts folded up their chairs and returned home humming, the eager crowd of fall readers appeared! It’s been amazing to see SO many in the library this fall! As soon as our new books hit the shelves at our entrance, they’re in your hands and on their way home with you! About 2,500 books and movies have been checked out this fall, along with 250 free downloads or streaming episodes of TV shows, movies, books, audiobooks, and magazines from the online services Nioga and its member libraries provide.

A new crop of holiday books for children are on their way, with cozy novels from bestselling authors for adults already on the shelves. Here’s a glimpse of some of our currently-owned heartwarming and festive picture books for the whole family to enjoy together during the holidays:

Look for the special quiet moments that can actually happen this season in Deborah Underwood’s THE CHRISTMAS QUIET BOOK. Any surprise examples I might give would lack Renata Liwska’s endearing soft and fuzzy artwork. You’ll recognize these quiet moments (that might lead to loud ones) and chuckle.

Does watching the glorious tree go up in Rockefeller Center give you a thrill every November? Then you’ll want to know the story of RED & LULU, written and illustrated by Matt Tavares. A happy cardinal pair have made a home in the spruce that becomes that celebrated tree one year, and they have some adventures in New York City amidst the lights, crowds, and gently falling snow.

Our library owns the simply-told Little Golden Book classic, THE CHRISTMAS STORY, featuring the sweet and endearing classic illustrations of Rochester artist Eloise Wilkin, as beautiful as the story itself.

When I was very young, I remember begging my father to bring in a sizable branch from our cedar hedge soon after Thanksgiving (but well before a real Christmas tree could be bought and survive the heat of our coal-fueled furnace), so that I could decorate it and start celebrating. And so I was intrigued by the true story of very young Queen Charlotte, who came from Germany to marry England’s King George III in 1761. As a little girl she too decorated such a branch, and was one of the first to start a Christmas tree tradition in her native country. The story of her continuing this tradition in England, and her charitable work caring for children there, is beautifully told by Nancy Churnin in THE QUEEN AND THE FIRST CHRISTMAS TREE, a wonderful book for families to enjoy together.

And, among my most favorite discoveries, the tender story, HANUKKAH HAMSTER, is a shining example of what kindness and caring for one another, by “both sides,” can do for this world. And you never saw a cuter hamster than Chickpea. Michelle Markel is the author of this endearing holiday story.

Everyone at your Library wishes you good health, and quiet, memorable times in the special days ahead.