Tag Archives: librarians

Our Favorite Books of 2016

books3In what has become a tradition here at Syosset R and R, we will be running a series of blog posts throughout the month of December telling you about our staff’s favorite reads for this year.  The books mentioned were read during 2016 but not necessarily published in 2016. Here goes:

Karen, Library Director:

orphan 8Orphan #8 by Kim van Alkemade 

When hospice nurse Rachel realizes that her new patient is the doctor that spent years subjecting her to tortuous medical experiments at a Jewish orphanage, she is forced to confront her memories of the time and their lasting effect.

Pam. M., Assistant Library Director:

behold-the-dreamersBehold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

An immigrant working class couple from Cameroon and the upper class American family for whom they work find their lives and marriages shaped by financial circumstances, infidelities, secrets, and the 2008 recession.

My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

my-name-is-lucy-bartonLucy Barton is recovering slowly from what should have been a simple operation. Her mother, to whom she hasn’t spoken for many years, comes to see her. Gentle gossip about people from Lucy’s childhood in Amgash, Illinois, seems to reconnect them, but just below the surface lie the tension and longing that have informed every aspect of Lucy’s lif

state_of_wonderState of Wonder by Ann Patchett

A researcher at a pharmaceutical company, Marina Singh must step out of her comfort zone when she is sent into the heart of the Amazonian delta to check on a field team that has been silent for two years–a dangerous assignment that forces Marina to confront the ghosts of her past.

Sharon, Head of Teen Services:

burn-baby-burnBurn Baby Burn by Meg Medina

During the summer of 1977 when New York City is besieged by arson, a massive blackout, and a serial killer named Son of Sam, seventeen-year-old Nora must also face her family’s financial woes, her father’s absence, and her brother’s growing violence.

“This YA book is set in NYC during the summer of 1977, and reading about the terror of Son of Sam, the blackout and all the crime was really eye-opening for me.  I tend to forget how dangerous it was in the city back then because for as long as I can remember, it’s been cleaned up and Disney-fied, but 1977 was a crazy time to be a teenager!”

and-i-darkenAnd I Darken by Kiersten White

In this first book in a trilogy a girl child is born to Vlad Dracula, in Transylvania, in 1435–at first rejected by her father and always ignored by her mother, she will grow up to be Lada Dragwlya, a vicious and brutal princess, destined to rule and destroy her enemies.

“This was the Dracula story reimagined as a dark and brooding teenage girl. The settings and the story were magical.  Loved it!”

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

red-queenWhen her supernatural powers manifest in front of a noble court, Mare, a thief in a world divided between commoners and superhumans, is forced to assume the role of lost princess before risking everything to help a growing rebellion.

“This is a dystopian trilogy where the color of your blood (red or silver) determines your fate. Some similarities to the Hunger Games, but very well-written and has a fabulous female protagonist.”

(All summaries from the publishers.)

Keep checking in with Syosset R and R for more of our favorite reads of 2016!

-posted by Sonia, Reference Services


What We’re Reading Now

Here are some titles that our staff

are enjoying at the moment:

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Pam M, Assistant Director:

Katherine of Aragon, the True Queen by Alison Weir

The Taming of the Queen  by Philippa Gregory (audiobook)

“….heavily in my Henry VIII period…again”

Karen, Library Director:

Untethered by Julie Lawson

Sue Ann, Head of Children’s Services

The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson

The Stopped Heart by Julie Myerson

Lisa H., Reference Librarian:

The Girls by Emma Cline

“This is a brand new book that is based on the Manson murders of 1969. From start to finish I was caught up in Evie’s desire to be accepted by the group of girls. Cline’s prose is so vivid that you almost smell the jasmine in the hot California air. I can’t recommend this book enough!”

Megan, Systems Manager:

Shadow’s Edge by Brent Weeks.

Jean S., Readers’ Services Librarian:

The Children by Ann Leary

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

When We Were Sisters by Emilie Richards

Jackie, Head of Readers’ Services:

The Vegetarian by Kang Han

Pam S., Teen Services Librarian:

The Last Anniversary by Liane Moriarty.

Evelyn, Readers’ Services Librarian:

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley.

“Keeps you interested the whole time!!!!  Great Summer Beach Read!”

What are you reading right now?

Let us know by  leaving a comment below.

-posted by Sonia, Reference Services


20 & 30 Something Book Discussion




by Rainbow Rowell

with Jessikah Chautin and Stacey Levine, Librarians

Monday, March 14, 2016

7 PM

“Gossiping and sharing their personal secrets on e-mail in spite of their company’s online monitoring practices, Beth and Jennifer unwittingly amuse Internet security Lincoln, who unexpectedly falls for Beth while reading their correspondence.” -from the publisher

No registration required.


Books available at the Readers’ Services.

teens readingFriend us on Facebook:

Syosset Public Library 20 & 30-Something Book Club

– posted by Stacey, Readers’ Services

What We’re Reading Now

Second floor fireplace and seating area.
Second floor fireplace and seating area.

Winter is a great time to cozy up and read.  Here is what some of our staff is reading at the moment:

exLisa H., Reference Librarian, “I had read great reviews about The Ex by Alafair Burke before I started reading and so far I haven’t been disappointed. I can’t wait to find out if Olivia’s ex is guilty or not.”

Agreeing to defend her long-ago ex-fiancé when he is arrested for a triple homicide involving his wife’s murderer, a top criminal lawyer confronts formidable doubts in the face of mounting evidence.

Barney, Reference Librarian, “I am currently finishing up two series – The Gray Man series by Mark Greaney – five action/thrillers that I happened upon by chance. And Robert Harris has finally published the conclusion of his Cicero trilogy – the most recent book, Dictator, follows Cicero during the final years of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Empire.”

back blastReturning to Washington to uncover the truth about why the CIA betrayed him, former elite agent-turned-Gray Man Court Gentry discovers that the case is still very much under discussion and that he has stumbled onto a secret that powerful enemies will kill to keep.

dictatorWith his life in ruins, an exiled Cicero plots a comeback to become Rome’s supreme senator.




Karen, Library Director, is reading The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende.

Japanese LoverIn 1939 San Francisco, Alma falls in love with Ichimei, the gardener’s son, who is sent to an internment camp, but although they reunite, they must hide their love, until in old age her caregiver and her grandson learn about their secret passion.


Pam M, Assistant Library Director, is reading Outlander  by Diana Gabaldon “on my Kindle”.

OutlanderHurtled back through time more than two hundred years to Scotland in 1743, Claire Randall finds herself caught in the midst of an unfamiliar world torn apart by violence, pestilence, and revolution and haunted by her growing feelings for James Fraser, a young soldier


Evelyn, Readers’ Services Librarian, is reading Eleanor By Jason Gurley.

EleanorYears after an accident claims her twin’s life and triggers her father’s abandonment and mother’s ascent into alcoholism, Eleanor begins to experience supernatural dissociations that reveal her parents’ unhappy pasts and her role in helping them heal.

Jackie, Head of Readers’ Services, “I just finished The First Order by Jeff Abbott.”

First OrderTwo brothers. One dead, executed by extremists on a grainy video. The other forged into a top undercover agent. But now, Sam Capra has reason to believe that his brother, Danny, may be alive. Sam Capra is on a one-man mission to find his brother . . .and to stop a war.


Sonia, Health Reference Librarian, “I’m reading The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. I have a thing for reading books like this, all about why we do the things we do.  This one presents its information in a very easy, not at all dry style and is fascinating.”

Power of HabitIdentifies the neurological processes behind behaviors, explains how self-control and success are largely driven by habits, and shares scientifically-based guidelines for achieving personal goals and overall well-being by adjusting specific habits.


Pam S., Teen Services Librarian, “I am reading Rogue Lawyer by John Rogue LawyerGrisham.”

A nomadic lawyer because of frequent death threats, Sebastian Rudd takes on a case involving a brain-damaged young man accused of murdering two little girls.

Betty T., Consultant, is reading The Relic Master by Christopher Buckley.

Relic MasterPressured by an ambitious patron who would buy a cardinalship, a 16th-century relic hunter and his reckless artist best friend unsuccessfully forge a shroud before being placed in the custody of loutish mercenaries to steal the celebrated Shroud of Chambéry.


Ed, Head of Reference Services, is reading Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys – YA book about refugees fleeing Prussia during WW II,  Into Oblivion by Arnaldur Indridason – prequel to the Erlendur mystery series set in Iceland and The Big Knockover by Dashiell Hammett – short Pulp Mystery (1920s-1940s) stories, primarily in his Continental Op series.”

Salt to the SeaFrantically racing to freedom with thousands of other refugees as Russian forces close in on their homes in East Prussia, Joana, Emilia and Florian meet aboard the doomed Wilhelm Gustloff and are forced to trust each other in order to survive

Into OblivionDetective Erlendur, who works for the shadowy Marion Briem, investigates the case of a man who may have been thrown from an airplane and a cold case disappearance of a young girl.

big knockoverDashiell Hammett’s Continental Op was the prototype for generations of tough-guy detectives. He is also the hero of most of the nine stories in this volume. The Op’s one enthusiasm is doing his job, (which) entail taking on a gang of modern-day freebooters, a vice-ridden hell’s acre in the Arizona desert, and the bank job to end all bank jobs, along with such assorted grifters as Babe McCloor, Bluepoint Vance, Alphabet Shorty McCoy, and the Dis-and-Dat Kid.

All summaries from the publishers.

-posted by Sonia, Reference Services


Thanks to Local Businesses!

summer wrap up 2015The Syosset Public Library Readers’ Services Department would like to thank the following local businesses for their generous donations to the 2015 Adult Summer Reading Club!

Pictured above: Readers’s Services Librarians with guest author: (left to right) Evelyn Hershkowitz, Stacey Levine, author Rosanna Chiofalo,  Jackie Ranaldo and Jean Simpson.

Ace Florist of Syosset

Angel Tips

Ayhan’s Shish-Kebab Mediterranean Restaurants


Butera’s Restaurant of Woodbury


Diva Nails

Dugan’s Sandwich Shop

Dunkin Donuts (Woodbury Commons)

Eastern Breeze Nails & Spa

Fresh Market

Gabby’s Gourmet

George Martin’s Grillfire

Great Shapes Swimwear and Lingerie

Iavarone Brothers

Jack Nails

Jerrie Shop

Lonny’s Woodbury

Lovely Nails

Maddy Fine Jewelers

Max & Gino’s All American Clothing Co.



Ms’tique Boutique

New York Sports Club of Syosset

Oasis Beauty Spa

One Small Step

Orange Theory Fitness

Party City

Prime Time Butcher

Ray Leventhal Clothing

Realistic Nails

Salon Entourage


Steve’s Piccola Bussola Italian Ristorante

Stop & Shop

Tenjin Japanese Restaurant

Trader Joe’s

Wild Fig Mediterranean Grill & Pideria

The Balloons at the August 12 Wrap-Up party were generously donated by Party City (Woodbury). 

We would also like to thank

HarperCollins Library Marketing Team

Macmillan Library Marketing Team

St. Martin’s Press

Simon and Schuster, Inc.Education & Library Division

for their generous book donations used for our weekly raffle prizes and genre book sets!

  • posted by Jackie, Readers’ Services


Evening Book Club


Tuesday, July 14 at 7:30 PM

With Jean Simpson, Readers’ Services Librarian

“A satire on totalitarianism features farm animals that overthrow their human owner and set up their own government, only to develop into an equally corrupt society. Taking as his starting point the betrayed promise of the Russian Revolution, Orwell lays out a vision that, in its bitter wisdom, gives us the clearest understanding we possess of the possible consequences of our social and political acts.”  (From the Publisher)

Free event. No registration required.

Books are available at the Circulation Desk.

-posted by Jean S., Readers’ Services





Afternoon Book Club



Join us on March 24, 2015  at 1:30 PM for a discussion

of the Jane Austen classic

Pride and Prejudice

with Sonia Grgas, Reference Librarian

“When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers thatDarcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life.” – from the publisher.

This program is free and all are welcome.
Books are currently available at the circulation desk.
Hope to see you there!

– posted by Sonia, Reference Services