Celebrate National Library Week with The Big Library Read!

It's National Library Week, and what better way to feel the library love than by joining an international celebration of reading? The Big Library Read is the world's largest digital book club, with over 20,000 libraries participating, including Algonquin Area Public Library District.

Taking part is easy. Between April 4 -18, use the Libby digital library app to download the spring selection, Music Is History by Questlove, with no holds and no waits. After reading, check out the discussion questions here, and share your thoughts on the discussion board. Post about the book on social media using #biglibraryread, and you'll be entered into a drawing to win Apple AirPods Pro.


Music Is History combines Questlove’s deep musical expertise with his curiosity about history, examining America over the past fifty years.

Focusing on the years 1971 to the present, Questlove finds the hidden connections in the American tapestry, whether investigating how the blaxploitation era reshaped Black identity or considering the way disco took an assembly-line approach to Black genius. And these critical inquiries are complemented by his own memories as a music fan, and the way his appetite for pop culture taught him about America. A history of the last half-century and an intimate conversation with one of music’s most influential and original voices, Music Is History is a singular look at contemporary America.

Photo by Daniel Dorsa

Questlove is known to television audiences as the Musical Director for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. He is co-founder of the groundbreaking Philadelphia hip-hop band The Roots, which also serves as the Tonight Show house band.  He made his directorial debut with the Academy Award winning feature documentary Summer of Soul. A drummer, DJ, producer, culinary entrepreneur and New York Times bestselling author, he is set to direct the upcoming feature documentary on Sly Stone.

Discover Our Digital Library!

Did you know that AAPLD cardholders can check out and enjoy books, audiobooks, music, and video, anytime, anyplace? Using our digital library collections means that you never have to go without something to read or watch.

While our digital collections have plenty of fans, there are still lots of myths and misconceptions that might have discouraged you from trying Libby, Hoopla, Axis360 or Biblioboard.

In honor of the upcoming travel and road trip season-- which digital content is perfect for, by the way-- please join us for a bit of digital library myth-busting!

Myth #1- "I don't have an ereader."

You don't need one! Our Libby, Hoopla, Biblioboard and Axis360 digital library apps can be easily installed on a Smartphone or tablet. The apps are free. Our website has links and video tutorials to get you started. Just download, install, enter your library card number and you're good to go!

Prefer in-person assistance? Stop by the Adult Services Reference desk or Technology desk, and ask a staff member for help.

Myth #2- "I'd rather read print books."

Hey, we get it. We love print books, too. But sometimes, it's just not convenient to carry one around. Ebooks can go anywhere your phone can go.

And reading doesn't have to be an either/or experience. Consider checking out the digital version of whatever you're reading in print, so you can enjoy your book on the go. Sure beats mindless scrolling while you're waiting at the dentist's office.

Myth #3- "Who has time to read?"

And speaking of mindless scrolling, we spend roughly 3 hours or more per day on our phones. What if we used just a little of that time for reading? Now, those empty minutes in the waiting room can be spent devouring the latest must-read thriller, steamy romance, or this month's celebrity reading pick.

Myth #4- "Digital reading is hard on your eyes."

ebook and headphonesOur digital apps include options to customize your reading experience. Dark backgrounds, larger fonts and downloadable audiobooks help give your eyes a rest.

Downloadable audiobooks have the added benefit of being travel- friendly. Listen in the car, or on a plane, and watch the trip fly by!


Book Wizards (03/08/2022): The Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles (cover)

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

“Mary Renault lives again!” declares Emma Donoghue, author of Room, referring to The Song of Achilles, Madeline Miller’s thrilling, profoundly moving, and utterly unique retelling of the legend of Achilles and the Trojan War. A tale of gods, kings, immortal fame, and the human heart, The Song of Achilles is a dazzling literary feat that brilliantly reimagines Homer’s enduring masterwork, The Iliad.

An action-packed adventure, an epic love story, a marvelously conceived and executed page-turner, Miller’s monumental debut novel has already earned resounding acclaim from some of contemporary fiction’s brightest lights—and fans of Mary Renault, Bernard Cornwell, Steven Pressfield, and Colleen McCullough’s Masters of Rome series will delight in this unforgettable journey back to ancient Greece in the Age of Heroes.

Next Meeting:
March 8th @ 7:00 PM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here



Happily Ever After (02/21/2022): People We Meet On Vacation

People We Meet On Vacation (cover)

People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry

Two best friends. Ten summer trips. One last chance to fall in love.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Beach Read comes a sparkling new novel that will leave you with the warm, hazy afterglow usually reserved for the best vacations.

Poppy and Alex. Alex and Poppy. They have nothing in common. She’s a wild child; he wears khakis. She has insatiable wanderlust; he prefers to stay home with a book. And somehow, ever since a fateful car share home from college many years ago, they are the very best of friends. For most of the year they live far apart—she’s in New York City, and he’s in their small hometown—but every summer, for a decade, they have taken one glorious week of vacation together.

Until two years ago, when they ruined everything. They haven’t spoken since.

Poppy has everything she should want, but she’s stuck in a rut. When someone asks when she was last truly happy, she knows, without a doubt, it was on that ill-fated, final trip with Alex. And so, she decides to convince her best friend to take one more vacation together—lay everything on the table, make it all right. Miraculously, he agrees.

Now she has a week to fix everything. If only she can get around the one big truth that has always stood quietly in the middle of their seemingly perfect relationship. What could possibly go wrong?

Next Meeting:
February 21st @ 7:00 PM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here


Love Your Tech in 2022!

Did you receive a new device as a holiday gift, or upgrade with a great year-end deal? Maybe you've resolved to get more comfortable with technology in 2022. Your library is here to help!

In January, we're offering classes to help you get the most out of your technology, whether you're a beginner who wants to master the basics, or you want access to thousands of books, videos, music and more, 24/7 with your library card! Classes are taught by Digital Literacy Librarian Kenny Duray, and you can attend in-person or online. Click the class link to register, or call the Adult Services department.


Beginner Basics

Don't know how to use a computer, tablet or smartphone? Have questions about your device, or another tech-related topic? Our Tech With Kenny classes are for you! Classes are held Wednesday mornings from 10-11 a.m. Each session includes a half-hour lesson, followed by a half hour for Q&A and practice time.

January 5: Using The Mouse and Keyboard - learn basic mouse controls and keyboard keys

January 12: The Internet - learn about browsers, how to search, create a bookmark, and tips for online safety

January 19: Email - Learn to create an email account, send an email, and attach to an email

January 26: File Management - Learn to organize your files for easy access later



Your Library On The Go!

ebook and headphonesCheck out and download books, video, music and more, any time, any place, with your library card! Learn about our digital library apps and discover the fun and convenience of ebooks, eaudiobooks, digital video, magazines and newspapers. Classes are held Monday evenings from 7-8:30 p.m., in person or online.

January 10: AAPLD Library Apps - Learn about the services you can access through our apps, plus how to install and use them.

January 17: Downloading Ebooks and Audiobooks - Ebooks and eaudiobooks are convenient, portable, and perfect for travel, commuting, or enjoying from the comfort of home.

January 24: Downloading Movies and TV Shows -  Stream movies and TV shows, documentaries, indie hits, and selections from around the world, including shows from the popular BBC and Acorn TV networks.

January 31: Downloading Magazines and Newspapers -  Find your favorite magazines and newspapers, including international publications, in multiple languages.


Spinecrackers (01/07/2022): Anxious People

Anxious People (cover)

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove comes a charming, poignant novel about a crime that never took place, a would-be bank robber who disappears into thin air, and eight extremely anxious strangers who find they have more in common than they ever imagined.

Looking at real estate isn’t usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. The captives include a recently retired couple who relentlessly hunt down fixer-uppers to avoid the painful truth that they can’t fix their own marriage. There’s a wealthy bank director who has been too busy to care about anyone else and a young couple who are about to have their first child but can’t seem to agree on anything, from where they want to live to how they met in the first place. Add to the mix an eighty-seven-year-old woman who has lived long enough not to be afraid of someone waving a gun in her face, a flustered but still-ready-to-make-a-deal real estate agent, and a mystery man who has locked himself in the apartment’s only bathroom, and you’ve got the worst group of hostages in the world.

Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next.

Next Meeting:
January 7th @ 10:00 AM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here


Oh, the Horror! (12/28/2021): A Head Full of Ghosts

A Head Full of Ghosts (cover)

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay


A chilling thriller that brilliantly blends psychological suspense and supernatural horror, reminiscent of Stephen King’s The Shining, Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House, and William Peter Blatty’s The Exorcist.

The lives of the Barretts, a normal suburban New England family, are torn apart when fourteen-year-old Marjorie begins to display signs of acute schizophrenia.

To her parents’ despair, the doctors are unable to stop Marjorie’s descent into madness. As their stable home devolves into a house of horrors, they reluctantly turn to a local Catholic priest for help. Father Wanderly suggests an exorcism; he believes the vulnerable teenager is the victim of demonic possession. He also contacts a production company that is eager to document the Barretts’ plight. With John, Marjorie’s father, out of work for more than a year and the medical bills looming, the family agrees to be filmed, and soon find themselves the unwitting stars of The Possession, a hit reality television show. When events in the Barrett household explode in tragedy, the show and the shocking incidents it captures become the stuff of urban legend.

Fifteen years later, a bestselling writer interviews Marjorie’s younger sister, Merry. As she recalls those long ago events that took place when she was just eight years old, long-buried secrets and painful memories that clash with what was broadcast on television begin to surface—and a mind-bending tale of psychological horror is unleashed, raising vexing questions about memory and reality, science and religion, and the very nature of evil.

Next Meeting:
December 28th @ 7:00 PM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here



The Nail Biters (12/21/2021): The Fifth Vial

The Fifth Vial (cover)

The Fifth Vial by Michael Palmer

From the blockbuster, eleven-time New York Times bestselling author comes a novel of medical suspense that begins with these chilling questions: Who ends up with the blood samples you routinely give for tests? What else are they being used for? Why don’t you know?

Take a Deep Breath. . . .

In Boston, a disgraced medical student is sent to deliver a research paper that could save her career. . . . Four thousand miles away, in a jungle hospital in Cameroon, a brilliant, reclusive scientist, dying from an incurable disease that threatens to make each tortured breath his last, is on the verge of perfecting a serum that could save millions of lives, and bring others inestimable wealth. . . . In Chicago, a disillusioned private detective, on the way to his third career, is hired to determine the identify of a John Doe, killed on a Florida highway, with mysterious marks on his body.

Three seemingly disconnected lives, surging unrelentingly toward one another. Three lives becoming irrevocably intertwined. Three lives in mounting peril, moving ever closer to the ultimate confrontation against a deadly secret society with godlike aspirations and roots in antiquity.

Medical student. Scientist. Private eye. Three people who will learn the deeper meanings of brilliance and madness, truth and deception, trust and betrayal.

Three lives linked forever by a single vial of blood—the fifth vial.

Next Meeting:
December 21st @ 6:30 PM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here


Happily Ever After (12/20/2021): In a Holidaze

In a Holidaze (cover)

In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren

One Christmas wish, two brothers, and a lifetime of hope are on the line for hapless Maelyn Jones in In a Holidaze, the quintessential holiday romantic novel by Christina Lauren, the New York Times bestselling author of The Unhoneymooners.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…but not for Maelyn Jones. She’s living with her parents, hates her going-nowhere job, and has just made a romantic error of epic proportions.

But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favorite place in the world—the snowy Utah cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born, along with two other beloved families. Mentally melting down as she drives away from the cabin for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy.

The next thing she knows, tires screech and metal collides, everything goes black. But when Mae gasps awake…she’s on an airplane bound for Utah, where she begins the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop—and finally get her true love under the mistletoe.

Jam-packed with yuletide cheer, an unforgettable cast of characters, and Christina Lauren’s trademark “downright hilarious” (Helen Hoang, author of The Bride Test) hijinks, this swoon-worthy romantic read will make you believe in the power of wishes and the magic of the holidays.

Next Meeting:
December 20th @ 7:00 PM at Hybrid at Harnish (in-person or online participation are both available)

Register for online or in-person attendance here


Stranger than Fiction (12/07/2021): Shoot Like a Girl: One Woman’s Dramatic Fight in Afghanistan and on the Home Front

Shoot Like a Girl: One Woman's Dramatic Fight in Afghanistan and on the Home Front (cover)

Shoot Like a Girl: One Woman’s Dramatic Fight in Afghanistan and on the Home Front by Mary Jennings Hegar

“A must-read about an American patriot whose courage and determination will have a lasting impact on the future of our Armed Forces and the nation.”—Senator John McCain

On July 29, 2009, Air National Guard major Mary Jennings “MJ” Hegar was shot down while on a Medevac mission on her third tour in Afghanistan. Despite being wounded, she fought the enemy and saved the lives of her crew and their patients. But soon she would face a new battle: to give women who serve on the front lines the credit they deserve…

After being commissioned into the U.S. Air Force, MJ Hegar was selected for pilot training by the Air National Guard, finished at the top of her class, then served three tours in Afghanistan, flying combat search-and-rescue missions, culminating in a harrowing rescue attempt that would earn MJ the Purple Heart as well as the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor Device.

But it was on American soil that Hegar would embark on her greatest challenge—to eliminate the military’s Ground Combat Exclusion Policy, which kept female armed service members from officially serving in combat roles despite their long-standing record of doing so with honor.

In Shoot Like a Girl, MJ takes the reader on a dramatic journey through her military career: an inspiring, humorous, and thrilling true story of a brave, high-spirited, and unforgettable woman who has spent much of her life ready to sacrifice everything for her country, her fellow man, and her sense of justice.

Next Meeting:
December 7th @ 6:30 PM at Virtual

Register for online meeting here