Banned Books Week 2020

It’s Banned Books Week! We celebrate Banned Books Week by having the freedom to read what we choose. The theme for this year is “Censorship is a dead end. Find your freedom to read.” Visit the following padlet for information on frequent reasons why books are challenged or banned from schools and libraries as well as some related activities.

Made with Padlet

Visit this padlet for a list of frequently challenged and banned books. Also featured are books for middle and high about censorship, available for curbside pickup or as an ebook.

Made with Padlet

September Book Club

Welcome back! Our first Book Club of the new school took place earlier this month – virtually. Whether remote or in-person, Book Club will happen!

Ms. Melinson started us off by sharing what she read over the summer. She listened to The Poet X audiobook (those who have listened to it agree that it’s incredible. It’s read by the author, Elizabeth Acevedo – check it out on Overdrive) for the high school read. She also started reading Elizabeth Acevedo’s second book, With the Fire On High, and is enjoying the book’s setting of Philadelphia where she grew up. The book takes place just blocks from where her mother grew up. Ms. Melinson finally read Educated: A Memoir. She found it compelling, if possibly unreliable, but is on the fence about whether or not she enjoyed it.

Top to bottom: With the Fire on High, The Poet X, Me and White Supremacy, The Fire Next Time, The Fire This Time, Begin Again, Good Talk

Ms. Melinson also completed Eddie Moore’s 21 Day Racial Equity Challenge, which inspired her to-be-read pile: Olivia read Eating People is Wrong. She liked the first few pages, but overall found it to be outdated and wrong. She also read Confessions of a Mask and liked how well-written and poetic it was. Mrs. Strong read The Dark Knight Returns graphic novel and didn’t like it, mainly because of the art. Samhita read The Starless Sea and couldn’t put it down. She re-read Dread Nation because the sequel was recently released and The Ballad of Snakes and Songbirds, which she described as “really good and really long.” Eliana read Divergent and started the sequel, Insurgent. She also read To Kill a Mockingbird, but found it kind of boring.

Mr. Wells read Station Eleven, and found its premise a little too close to home currently (it’s about a global pandemic). When he was looking for options for the all high school read, he read I’ll Give You the Sun and thought it to be “un-nuanced”. Mr. Wells also read Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, describing it as a thoughtful and humanizing approach to war.

Then Ms. Melinson asked how people are doing with reading during the pandemic. Some said it was easier due to having more free time, while others said they actually had more to do so reading was hard to find time for. One person responded that reading is easier for escapism because of the lack of activities and sports on tv while another person said they use reading as a way to rest from all of the screen time.

For more information on the books we discussed and the books we’ve discussed at previous book clubs, check out our Goodreads page!

Welcome to the Matthews Library! (plus info on Curbside Pickup)

Use this form to fill out your request for curbside pickup. You may fill it out now, but curbside services don’t begin until Saturday, September 12th. Once it begins, curbside services will take place on Saturdays from 9:30 a.m. – noon excluding school breaks. Be sure to place your order by Friday evening.

More Information on Curbside Pick Up

The library is using the Remind app for instant communication on Saturdays about the status of your order. If the book(s) you’ve requested are checked out or otherwise unavailable, you will be contacted via the Remind app on Saturday. You will be added to the Remind app by the assistant librarian once you’ve submitted your curbside pick up request. Remind will then send you an email with instructions for joining the Matthews Library.

Your book(s) will be available for pickup on the planter benches directly across from the library doors in a bag with your name on it.

Book(s) are due back four weeks from the day you pick them up. If you would like to keep your book(s) longer, please email Ms. Melinson and Mrs. Strong at You may return your books Saturdays between 9:15 a.m. and noon by placing them on the cart in front of the library doors.