Are you an NPR Fan?

And who isn’t?  Check out this great article at the NPR website, Like These Books? Here are 60+ Things You Might Also Like…  You will find a plethora of suggestions for, not more books, but other materials you might like including movies, theater performances, podcasts, blog posts, television shows, web series, and more.

For instance, if you liked, The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen, NPR suggests following up with the FX TV series called The Americans or the 2012 film, Argo, about the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis starring and directed by Ben Affleck.  Or, on a lighter note, if you liked Cat Sense by John Bradshaw, you (and your kids) might like My Cat From Hell, a wildly popular TV series or Disney’s time honored classic movie, The AristoCats.  Maybe you loved The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.  NPR suggests the Masterpiece mini-series, Great Expectations or Woman in Gold, the 2015 movie starring Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds.

Find suggestions for decluttering, falling in love, women’s rights, thrillers, and food among other things.

And if you prefer to do the whole process in reverse, check out their other article, Like These Movies? Here Are 100+ Things You Might Also Like… which links many of your favorite movies to suggested novels and non-fiction selections in addition to other mediums.  You will find everything from Willa Cather’s My Antonia to Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One.  There is something for everyone in these two fun and thought-provoking articles.  Enjoy!

Have You Heard Any Good Books Lately?

Audiobooks are a hot topic now.  They even have their own month!  June is Audiobook Month.  Who knew?  Audiobooks come in a variety of formats – the good old fashioned CD audiobook that most of us are familiar with, battery powered pre-loaded audiobooks for those on the go, and the newer MP3-CD format for use with enabled CD or DVD players or for downloading to your I-Pod!  With all three formats available at the North Castle Public Library, we are sure to have a title for you.

I always thought audiobooks were reserved for long car trips to keep the kids from asking, “are we there yet?” or to fill in the gaps between radio reception – have you ever tried to find a radio station on Interstate 84 between here and Springfield, MA?  Then one day about two years ago I needed a book for an online book club, Atonement by Ian McEwan, and the library copies were all checked out!  The audiobook was on the shelf.  Hmmmm…  I had no long car trips in my immediate future and I only have a 10 minute commute to and from work.  How will this work?  I decided to give it a go.  I put the first disc in and I was hooked.  Dangerously addicted.  I get nervous as I get near the end of one book that it might end before I have my next book securely placed in the car door pocket next to me.

In the 60 some odd audiobooks that I have listened to since, I have met only one that I didn’t like.  You will have to come in and ask me which one that was as it doesn’t seem fair to put it in print.  But that leaves 59 that I did like so let’s talk about a few of them.

Big Little Lies I love Liane Moriarty.  She has such a refreshing approach to writing.  How can you write a murder mystery and keep the identity of the victim a secret until the end of the book?  That’s exactly what Moriarty did in Big Little Lies read by Caroline Lee who has the perfect Aussie accent for Moriarty’s Aussie books.

18220696The Husband’s Secret is another gem, also read by Lee, which gets you thinking about how every choice you make, small or large, has consequences.  And don’t be fooled, his secret is probably not be what you think it is.

H is for HawkA recent favorites is H Is For Hawk by Helen MacDonald, read by the author.  An interesting memoir about the author’s struggle with grief when her beloved father dies suddenly and unexpectedly.  Growing up, MacDonald shared a passionate interest in hawks and falconry with her father, which is why she decides that now is the time to find and tame a goshawk, apparently one of the hardest breeds of hawks to tame.  She gives herself and her life entirely over to the care and taming of her hawk, Mabel, to the point that she believes she IS the hawk. She hides behind Mabel and cuts herself off from the rest of the world as she tries to cope with the fact that her father is gone.  As a child she read (and hated) T. H. White’s book, The Goshawk, another audiobook I want to listen to, and her book is as much about T. H. White and his extremely dysfunctional life as it is about herself and her nearly incapacitating struggle with grief.  Interestingly, her struggles parallel those of White’s although it takes her a long time to understand that.

Circling The SunFinally, Circling the Sun by Paula McLain read by Katharine McEwan – an historical fiction account of the (mostly younger) life of Beryl Markham.  This book wasn’t always easy to listen to. Markham, whose early life was sadly and hugely dysfunctional, made inexplicably poor decisions throughout her young years that only made her life more difficult. I wanted to shake her! In addition, given her motherless, wild and free upbringing in the Kenyan bush, she was unable, or unwilling, to cave to the conventions of the times. Yet as liberated and free as she desired to be, she was forever turning to men – always the wrong men – to achieve her goals – she was a terribly conflicted, difficult, and complicated woman.  Listening to this made me want to re-read West with the Night, Markham’s (controversial) autobiography and Out of Africa by Markham’s friend, Isak Dinesen.  Hmmm… I wonder if I can find them in audio.

Happy listening!

Become tech savvy!

You don’t have to spend money to become a spreadsheet pro and learn other important computer skills!

All you need is your North Castle library card. The computer classes that are offered on our library’s website are truly amazing.

A few years ago, I was looking for a job, and I wanted to improve my skills in Excel and website coding. At the time, I spent over $1,000 at a technical school in Manhattan. I have recently been delighted to discover that my library provides access to and Skillsoft online courses, which I’ve used to become more proficient with various Microsoft products and WordPress. I’ve not only saved money, but I’ve benefited from learning at my own pace and I’m not holding up the rest of the class when I’m slow to grasp something!

In addition, both of these websites offer interesting courses on business skills like marketing, finance, workplace professionalism, and much more. Go to our website:, and look at Your Virtual Library in the upper right. Under Educational Resources, you can find and Skillsoft online courses. Or, here are the direct links:
Susan Kramer

You can’t judge a book by its digital platform

So you have decided to make the plunge into the e-book realm…So many digital platforms! So many electronic books! What’s a person suppose to do these days to find a book to read? How do you get started?

North Castle Public Library has posted links to 4 major platforms that you can choose from, but not all offer the same material. I will try to explain the major differences between the sites we have posted to help you find your next e-book

overdrive logoOverdrive Media Platform : Overdrive has been with Westchester Library System for the quite some time. This platform offers NY Times best sellers and most popular authors in both Mp3 (audio) and e-book. Once an app is installed on your device you can access the catalog directly from your phone, or tablet. It offers formats for Kindle as well as Nook, however additional apps would need to be installed on your device so the material can be opened. Kindle has its own app, nook reader as well. Books remain on your device for 14 days from download. Holds can be placed online and when title is available you will be notified by email. There are no late-fees or penalties as the book “expires” making it unable to open until you either download another license, or delete the image off your device. No worries about shelf space filling up!

  Total BooX Offered through the Westchester Library System, and linked from our website This platform is a GREAT resource for non-fiction / technical books. Marketing, management, professional books as well as Travel books like Fodor’s, Frommers, Lonely Planet and others. Once the book is checked out it goes onto your chosen “shelf” and will stay there until you delete it. No expiration, no returns no fees. If you decide that you do not want it on your shelf any longer, just delete it. This is also an app driven platform, e-books only, no audio at this point

3m Cloud Library: Offered through 9 of the 39 Westchester Libraries at this point. This is a cloud based app-driven platform which is new to the 9 of us. Catalog of NY Times bestsellers is growing by the month and some libraries are starting to purchase audio books as well as. Easy to use and available cross device you never need to worry about not having access to your book, as long as there is wifi to download / stream. Books are borrowed for two weeks, holds will remain available for three days after notification. No fines or fees, book will disappear off your device at the end of the loan period.

one click digitalOne Click Digital: Available through the Westchester Library System . App driven platform that is great for a variety of titles that are more obscure as well as older best selling titles. Favorites that are hard to find may be accessed through this platform. Both Audio as well as e-books are available to download. Developed by Recorded books this is great place to check for some older treasures that may be ready for a re-read!  And like all other platforms,two week loan period , no fees or fines.

This is the link to Westchester Library System’s Listen, Read & Watch tab. One worth mentioning, while you are there check out an out of print and out of copyright classics found in The Gutenberg Collection. One can find texts written in other languages as well.



Edie Martimucci is the Director of Adult Services at the North Castle Public Library. She loves hiking, reading, gardening and knitting, not necessarily in that order, it all depends on the weather.

Our Newspaper Archive!

Today (Friday, August 19, 2016), I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Hahn. He told me he and his wife, Edith Hahn, published the North Castle News for twenty years. “Edith did 90 percent of the work,” he explained. After leaving Armonk, the Hahns toured the U.S. several times, traveling to and from the California desert. Now that he was back in Armonk, Mr. Hahn wanted to look at our bound volumes of the paper.

Mr. Hahn didn’t know we’ve begun archiving the newspaper online, so, after I got him a couple of the bound volumes, I showed him how to access the archive. We saw the very first page of the first published volume. If you want to see it, too, or read any of our digitized copies of The Sun, The Villager, or The North Castle News, here’s how you can do it.
Make sure you’re online, open a browser, and go here :

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