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What does the massive popularity of e-books and e-readers mean for public libraries? Well, it’s complicated, but for North Country libraries, getting on the e-book train is apparently well worth the expense. In an Odgensburg Journal article...
This feels like “fun with books & writing” week. First, we can read Betsy Kepes’ fine updates on the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Annual Conference happening in Seattle. But right now the Canadian...
Quick, when were heated seats invented? If you have that feature in your car, can you imagine living without it? Bonus Q: Are heated seats in the depths of winter cold about as good as sex? Credit writer Louise Penny for that quip. After a coming to...
Earlier this month Dale Hobson wrote about the National Toy Hall of Fame, including this year’s nominees. Judging from the response, many classic toys and games have staying power, in our minds if not in terms of sales at Christmas this year....
How well do inherited policies work in changing times? To be specific, I am mulling over things like trapping and mineral rights. Bear with me and I’ll explain. When I was a child my father mentioned the term “mineral rights.” I...


Books and Authors
Jul 22, 2014 — Arthur Allen's new book, The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl, describes how a WWII scientist in Poland smuggled the typhus vaccine to Jews — while his team made a weakened version for the Nazis.
Jul 22, 2014 — Spencer West was born with a genetic disorder that led to both his legs being amputated. West tells host Michel Martin about how he climbed Mount Kilimanjaro using just his hands and arms.
Jul 22, 2014 — Also: A survey suggests that the dispute between Amazon and Hachette may be deterring customers; Harper Lee apparently has questionable taste in coffee.

Special Features

Country Schoolhouse
Audio Play:
No Bigger Than a Piano Box: a North Country Schoolhouse in 1893
By historian Betsy Kepes. Based on the 1893 diary of a North Country schoolteacher. A Women's History Month special. Teacher's guide and CD available.
Irving Bachellor
Audio Novella:
A Franklin Manor Christmas
Paul Willcott of Saranac Lake reads his original Adirondack holiday story set in a down-at-heels former cure cottage and monastery occupied by a lonesome ex-professor.

BooksOther NCPR Literature Features:

Readers & Writers: Conversations on contemporary literature

Books & Literature Home page

Books Reviews

Author interviews

Recent Books: Recent regional books received at NCPR


"The Wind in the Islands" book launch is set for Wednesday, July 23rd from 5-7 pm at Cornwall Brothers Museum in Alexandria Bay.
"The Wind in the Islands" book launch is set for Wednesday, July 23rd from 5-7 pm at Cornwall Brothers Museum in Alexandria Bay.

Preview: "The Wind in the Islands" a new take on a classic children's novel

Generations of children have roamed the English countryside in the company of Rat, Mole, Toad, and Badger -- immortal animal pals in Kenneth Grahame's classic novel, The Wind in the Willows.

A Thousand Islands artist has created a North Country version of the book. Scott Ouderkirk grew up spending summers along the St. Lawrence River and has a hobby farm and studio near Hammond.

In his new adaptation, titled The Wind in the Islands, Mole and Rat have new adventures on the St. Lawrence in the Thousand Islands, with visits to familiar landmarks and historical river residents.  Go to full article
The Old Forge Library. Photo: courtesy Old Forge Library

Old Forge Library celebrates its centennial

The Old Forge Library is celebrating its centennial this summer with a series of literary events. In February of 1914, five people gathered in Old Forge and voted to establish a free library for the use of residents of the Town of Webb.

There have been lots of changes over the decades, and lots more books.

Todd Moe talks with the library's director, Izzie Worthen, about its history as a cultural landmark in the community. She's been Library Director since 1976.  Go to full article

Book review: "The Truth and Legend of Lily Martindale" by Mary Sanders Shartle

Mary Sanders Shartle begins her novel with a scene of an Adirondack hermit shooting a rifle at low flying military planes that are disturbing the quiet of a cold February day.

All of us have been startled by the roar of military fly-overs, but Lily Martindale does more than complain to the hotline. After a bullet from her rifle hits a plane she is under investigation by Homeland Security and her secluded life as a caretaker at a camp in the northern Adirondacks comes undone.  Go to full article
Join Hallie Bond for a book signing event at the Bookstore Plus in Lake Placid this Saturday, 3-5 pm.

New cookbook celebrates Adirondack history and cuisine

An Adirondack historian and top chef have teamed up to create a cookbook that offers new takes on traditional food. "Adirondack Cookbook" is part history lesson, part...  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/37771908@N04/5437139567/">Natsuko</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NYPL's renovation to cost $300M

NEW YORK (AP) The New York Public Library says its new renovation plan is expected to cost $300 million.  Go to full article

Book Review: "Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher" by Timothy Egan

You don't have to be a westerner to appreciate Edward Curtis's photos from a hundred years ago. His sepia prints show native people on horseback or in dugout canoes. His...  Go to full article

Archaeologist pens new book on Fort William Henry

LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. (AP) The longtime leader of archaeological digs at upstate New York 18th-century military sites has a new book out that details decades of excavations at...  Go to full article
Annie, Mary, and Sarah Brown, ca. 1851. Photo: Library of Congress<br />

Women and abolition the focus of lecture in Lake Placid on Saturday

The women in John Brown's family will be the focus of a lecture at the John Brown Day event in Lake Placid on Saturday. John Brown, the famous abolitionist, was convicted of...  Go to full article
A crowd of book-lovers, young and old, in the NCPR studio. Photo: Joel Hurd

Kids talk about "A Tale for the Time Being" by Ruth Ozeki

We have a bit of a tradition here at North Country Public Radio: book reviewer Betsy Kepes brings in a group of Canton H.S. students who have read and talked about a...  Go to full article
George Saunders. Photo via georgesaundersbooks.com

Author George Saunders at NCPR: weird fiction, writing, kindness

Writer George Saunders will be reading and talking about his work on the SUNY Canton campus as part of its Living Writers series...  Go to full article

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