C-SPL May Reader of the Month

May 2024 C-SPL Reader of the Month Emily Bartley

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May 2024 Reader of the Month Emily Bartley
Meet the C-SPL May 2024 Reader of the Month, Emily Bartley!

Happy May! I’m from the Indianapolis area originally, therefore the month of May is considered the best time of the year due to the Indy 500 taking place at the end and all the festivities leading up to it. I work as the Youth Outreach Programmer for the Carnegie-Stout Public Library, so it is apt that my name is the same as the character in the Clifford books.

Currently I am reading “Nevertheless We Persisted: 48 Voices of Defiance, Strength, and Courage.” It’s a collection of essays written by actors, activists, athletes, politicians, musicians, writers, and teens about a time in their youth when they were held back because of their race, gender, or sexual identity–but persisted. I’m also listening to “The Eyes & The Impossible” by Dave Eggers. It is the most recent Newbery Award winner.

Frequently I am asked what my favorite book is or what the best books are and it’s a tough question to answer. My reading tastes are very personal and mercurial.

I love the fiction books “Freckles” and “A Girl of the Limberlost” by Gene Stratton-Porter because my mom introduced them to me. The author was from the same area where my mom grew up and once we went to visit the Limberlost Cabin, which is now a historical site. I also love the book “The Boys in the Boat” by Daniel James Brown. My dad was a coxswain on the Purdue University Crew in the 1960s and after reading the book I have a new understanding of what that was like. I read “Last Train to Memphis: The Rise of Elvis Presley” by Peter Guralnick before traveling to Memphis and “Christy” by Catherine Marshall before going to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Each of these books gave me an extraordinary perspective on the people in my life or the places I was visiting. For that reason, one of my favorite genres is non-fiction/biography that reads like a novel—books such as “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skloot. Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Autobiography, “Between the World and Me” is another book where I gained new perspective into the world, insight into myself, and I found my favorite quote: “I was made for the library, not the classroom. The classroom was a jail of other people’s interests. The library was open, unending, free.”

I love the library because anything and everything I could possibly want to read/learn about is here. When it’s cold or rainy, I can go to the 641s to check out a healthy crock-pot recipe book to start dinner, while I crochet a new project I found in the 746s, while watching a new BBC mystery show on DVD or Kanopy. When it’s nice I can work in the yard with help from the seed library and the 630s and 710s, and then retire to my outdoor swing to read my other favorite genre of books–mysteries.

I have devoured almost everything Agatha Christie and Louise Penny wrote. I’m looking forward to the new Inspector Gamache book, “The Grey Wolf,” coming out in October. 

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