November is Career Development Month

November is Career Development Month – do you know about library resources available to North Country residents? In addition to print resources available on shelves, you can access the following resources with your library card anywhere, anytime:

JobNow: Offers job seekers immediate and practical help 24 hours a day. Build resumes and brush up your interviewing skills. Job seekers also have access through JobNow to business experts who are available to read and critique resumes.

Universal Class: Accessible through OverDrive’s Libby app, Universal Class offers over 500 self-paced courses to sharpen your skills.

Passbook Career Exams eBook collection: 36 titles to explore, from Account Clerk-Typist to Zoning Inspector.

Next Big Library Read Begins November 1

From November 1-15, North Country readers can join over a hundred thousand others around the world participating in OverDrive’s Big Library Read by borrowing Natalie D. Richards’s YA suspense thriller, Five Total Strangers, from our digital collection. Library card holders can borrow the ebook and audiobook for free without waiting by downloading the Libby app or visiting our digital library here. The title will automatically expire at the end of the lending period, and there are no late fees.

Big Library Read is an international reading program facilitated by OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for popular ebooks, audiobooks and magazines. Five Total Strangers is the 26th selection of this program which began in 2013 and takes place three times per year. Readers can join an online discussion about the book here.

In Five Total Strangers, Mira needs to get home for the holidays. Badly. But when an incoming blizzard results in a canceled connecting flight, it looks like she might get stuck at the airport indefinitely. And then Harper, Mira’s glamorous seatmate from her initial flight, offers her a ride. Harper and her three friends can drop Mira off on their way home. But as they set off, Mira realizes her fellow travelers are all total strangers. And every one of them is hiding something. Soon, roads go from slippery to terrifying. People’s belongings are mysteriously disappearing. Someone in the car is clearly lying, and may even be sabotaging the trip—but why? And can Mira make it home alive, or will this nightmare drive turn fatal?

To join the discussion, learn about past Big Library Read titles and download Libby, visit

Youth Services Roundup


It’s still not too late to register for the NYLA-YSS membership meeting! Join us on Thursday, October 28 at 4pm to hear what YSS has accomplished in the past year and learn more about how you can get involved! After the brief membership meeting, we will welcome a presentation from author Nina Crews. Sign up today!


And the winner of the Pollinator Pals giveaway is… Sandy Creek! Look for those in your next delivery, and everyone else, look for another giveaway soon!


From November 15-19, Let’s Move in Libraries and the Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services will host a week-long event celebrating the inspiring work of libraries who spearhead StoryWalk(R) programs. Get more information – and submit your StoryWalk to be featured – here! In related news, the NYS Library is hosting a webinar focused on this perfect social-distancing outdoor literacy experience. Check it out!


From Youth Services Shout-Out: “Are you always asking yourself how to weed series? Do you wait until it is no longer popular and then get rid of the whole set, even if a few of them still circ? Are you afraid to get rid of even one book in a series because you think someone will come in wanting that one book in the series? NEWSFLASH-It will happen whether you try to prevent it or not…”

RA for your Friday

The abnormally mild fall has tricked me into thinking we’re not right smack up against November, when in fact, we are! (I almost put on a hat this morning!) And now that the weather has well and truly turned, it’s time to embrace outerwear and look forward to November happenings…

…such as OverDrive’s next Big Library Read! Five Total Strangers, by Natalie D. Richards, will be available November 1 through November 15 as a simultaneous use eBook and eAudiobook – no lines, no waiting! Make sure your patrons know about this program with the help of OverDrive’s free marketing materials, including social media graphics.

The November LibraryReads list is out, as is the IndieNext preview. And for all you nonfiction fans, the What’s Nonfiction blog is coordinating Nonfiction November, highlighting favorite nonfiction reads of the year, Instagram prompts, and giveaways. Check it out!

Looking further down the road, I’m happy to announce three new titles being added to our Book Club in a Bag program – Black Sun, by Rebecca Roanhorse, The Address Book, by Dierdre Mask, and The Cold Millions, by Jess Walter. These titles will be available in January. I’ll be adding three new titles every quarter from here on out, so if you have suggestions, please send them my way!

Finally, #FridayReads: I’ve been gathering up books like acorns lately, so there’s been a bit of multi-tasking going on. Right now I’m tag-teaming Agatha of Little Neon and The Cure for What Ales You. In my earbuds is A Little Devil in America, and I’m looking forward to the latest episode of bakeoff when I get home. Happy reading/listening/vicarious baking!

November is Career Development Month

November is Career Development Month – the perfect time to make sure your patrons know about library resources available to help jobseekers, including:

JobNow: Offers job seekers immediate and practical help 24 hours a day. Would-be employees can build resumes and brush up their interviewing skills. Job seekers also have access through JobNow to business experts who are available to read and critique resumes.

Universal Class: Accessible through OverDrive’s Libby app, Universal Class offers over 500 self-paced courses to sharpen your skills.

Passbook Career Exams eBook collection: 36 titles to explore, from Account Clerk-Typist to Zoning Inspector.

Update to Open Meetings Law

On Monday, the Governor signed into law an amendment to Open Meetings Law.  Now, public bodies are required to make available or post to their website the documents that they will discussing at least 24 hours prior to the open meeting at which they will be discussing the documents.  It’s our understanding that this new requirement takes effect on November 17th (30 days after the signing into law, according to the text).  

For your reference, the text of the law is available here.  

It’s best practice to seek legal counsel should you have any questions regarding the new law.

Youth Services Roundup


The next youth services meeting will be… two meetings! Once again, the vote was split right down the middle, and even though I could have totally flipped a coin, why do that when I can just schedule two sessions for the same day and increase my enjoyment of that day twofold? So, please join your fellow youth services crew on either the morning or the afternoon of Wednesday, November 10 for a discussion about programming, community engagement, opportunities for collaboration, and anything else on your mind.


If you’re like me, you’re always looking for some shiny new informational texts for your children’s nonfiction shelves, amirite? I’ve got just the thing – Pollinator Pals! It’s a brand new, five-volume set for elementary school-aged students by our very own North Country author (and longtime pal) Rebecca Donnelly! Just email me with the subject line “BEE A PAL!” by Friday (10/22) at 10am for your chance to win!


From the ALSC blog: “Behold the I spy tank! We have these at several of our branches. Staff fill the tanks seasonally, and post a sheet of items to find next to it. They also have made a sweet eye spy bulletin board. This is an easy, inexpensive and engaging activity for parents coming to the branches.”


From Teen Services Underground: “Fiction weeding can be just plain hard sometimes. We form emotional attachments to stories and what they represent. The subjective nature of fiction weeding adds a thick layer of complication to the task… Why not have my teen volunteers help me with my weeding project? After all, if these titles weren’t of interest to the teens in my community, then it would be much easier for me to part with them…”

Youth Services Roundup


There’s still time to vote for the date of the next YS meetup – pick your best November dates here before tomorrow (10/8) at 3pm!


Did you know there is a statewide resource provided by the New York State Library that lists over 400 different performers and presenters who offer over 1,700 in-person and virtual programs for library and school settings? Join the NYS Library for a free webinar on Friday, October 22 at 11am to learn all about the Performers and Programs database and how it can assist you in planning your Summer Reading and other activities for the coming year!


From Red Tricycle: “Celebrate the season of pumpkin spice, snuggly sweaters and golden leaves by making a cornucopia of fun fall crafts with your kids. We’ve rounded up a huge list of autumn-appropriate arts and crafts that’ll keep you going all season long…”


From Teen Services Underground: “Coming up with new ideas or remembering hits from the past can be challenging. Instead of doing a deep-dive into one display idea with this post, I thought I’d share my personal list with you instead. Some of these ideas are basic concepts you’ve probably done, but I hope there are also displays on this list that are new to you.”

Youth Services Roundup


Registration is now open for the first ever CSLP Summer Programming Symposium on December 2! All library staff that are interested in summer programming should consider attending this free, online event that will cover programming ideas, outreach/partnerships, and promotion/marketing. You can find more information, including the day’s schedule, on the CSLP website.


From the ALSC blog: “We are still in a strange “not quite where we used to be, but not mid-pandemic either” place, so I thought it would be a good time to reflect on activities that we embraced during the pandemic to see whether they are worth keeping. What changes did we make that the public really embraced? What did we love as a staff? What is everyone just OVER?”


From No Time for Flash Cards: “Are you as excited about Halloween as I am? My daughter has been decorating our house slowly since the first day of school in August! I am thrilled to be back in the PreK classroom to see my 4 and 5-year-olds get excited, which lets me use their excitement for motivation to learn. Here are a bunch of PreK Halloween crafts and activities I will be trying to fit into my October lesson plans this year!”


Teen Librarian Toolbox has 39 upcoming books for all ages. Check it out!

RA for your Monday

In a small library, you may be the only person buying titles for your collection. But how to keep up with genres or formats you don’t know well? And what about when a patron asks for a recommendation? Don’t worry – North Country librarians are pooling our expertise on a variety of genres and formats to help you build your collection and provide excellent RA service. Check out our new deep dives into genre on our Collection Development Guide! Many thanks to Dorothy MEX and Linda Formerly-GOU for kicking us off with Literary Fiction and Horror, respectively. Mystery and sci-fi coming soon…

Moving right along to our regularly scheduled content!

We’ve got October picks from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, What’s Nonfiction, and The Millions. For all you genre fans, we’ve got romance from SBTB, sci-fi, fantasy and horror from io9, and crime reads from CrimeReads.

In other October news, it’s Reading Group Month! In order to ensure that your patrons know about our Book Club in a Bag program, we’re sending out fancy new bookmarks. So, keep an eye out for those.

Fall picks continue with this list from Lit Hub, Booklist is putting a spotlight on romance, and NoveList is offering another crash course – this time on True Crime!

Finally, #FridayReads: I’m not outdoorsy (frankly, nobody could be more indoorsy), but that seems to be making reading about wildlife in Mary Roach’s latest book even more interesting. I’ll be on vacation next week, so hopefully I can make a dent in the rest of the stack on my metaphorical and literal nightstand. Happy reading!