Staff Picks are everywhere!

If there’s one thing we love, it’s recommending books. A walk through our main & lower levels will reveal a dozen or more themed book displays featured throughout, which we change and update frequently. There’s also our “Reader’s Depot” on the main level, which features the current NYT Bestsellers Lists, release dates for upcoming titles, read-alike lists, and more.

Anyone going through the Checkout area has seen our Staff Picks wall. This wall is filled in daily with books our staff members have read and enjoyed. There’s ALWAYS something good to read there!

You may not know that there is also a “Staff Picks” page in our catalog. Staff members have put together some themed book lists there for you to peruse. You can browse these Staff Picks right from home, and if you see something you like, reserve a copy online!


If you’re reading this blog, you already know there are a ton of reading suggestions here. Elsewhere on social media, our Tumblr is full of book lists & book news, too.  And of course, you can always come right out and ask us for reading suggestions. Or let us know about a book you enjoyed. We love getting book recommendations almost as much as giving them!

Protect Yourself from Tech Support Scams


As the Technology Coordinator at the Cheshire Public Library, I am sometimes asked about the legitimacy of virus and malware alerts.

Imagine you’re browsing the web or enjoying a cup of coffee at home and you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from Microsoft or another well-known technology company. They say they’ve detected viruses or spyware or malware on your computer that could damage your system or steal your identity. They emphasize the danger you’re in and say your bank account and credit card information could be in jeopardy. They offer to sell you anti-virus software or fix your computer. Does this scenario sound familiar?

IT’S A SCAM! Instead of a phone call, these scams can also take the form of pop-up warnings or email messages. These scammers might:

  1. Try to enroll you in a bogus computer security or virus protection subscription program that does nothing.
  2. Ask you for your credit card information to bill you for phony services or protection you can get for free.
  3. Trick you into installing malware that could steal your usernames, passwords, and financial information.
  4. Ask you to give them remote access to your computer and then change settings so they can then infect your computer.
  5. Ask you to visit certain malicious websites to enter credit card information and personal details that they then use to make fraudulent charges.

These scam artists take advantage of our reasonable concerns about viruses, privacy, and identity theft. They purposely prey on groups who may not have as much experience with computers and the way they work, like senior citizens. Their aim is not to protect your computer or your identity, but the exact opposite. They want to make money, steal your identity, or take over your computer to do just that. It is these pop-ups, ads, emails and phone calls that are the real security threats.

If you find yourself dealing with one of these scams, please stay calm. Rest assured your computer or identity are not in peril and do not give out any personal or financial information. Report the phone call, pop-up, or email to the Federal Trade Commission by calling the Identity Theft Hotline at 1-877-438-4338 or TTY 1-866-653-4261.

Technology Help – Need device advice? Schedule a one-on-one lesson in the basics of computers, laptops, tablets, and eReaders. Click here to request an appointment online or call the library at 203-272-2245 to make an appointment. The library also offers a monthly Drop-in Tech Help program.


What’s All the Hoopla?

What is Hoopla?
For those that have never explored our digital offerings, Hoopla is a free service that is available to Cheshire library card holders (just like Overdrive)! All you need to register is your library card number, and then you create your own user name and password, which you will use to sign in from your computer or mobile device. (If you are a cardholder from another library, you may have access to the service through your own library. If you are unsure check with your home library.)

hoopla Welcome Header CPLHoopla offers users digital access to videos (movies & TV), full music albums,  audiobooks, e-books & comics  and more twenty-four hours a day. While there is a limit to how many items you can borrow per month with this service (six per user per month) as long as you are not binge watching a television series, this should not cause much frustration. Many people use this service to watch movies without having to wait their turn on a holds list. I tend to use it to watch the harder to find titles like Anime or Foreign Films that are less likely to be found in our physical collection.

The varied genres and search categories Hoopla offers can make it easy to find the documentary that was recommended but you somehow never got to see, or that weird children’s movie that your kids keep asking for but your old VHS or DVD is no longer working.  My husband, who is not a big reader, has caved to the influence of myself, a coworker, and some of his favorite shows, and started reading graphic novels. What we do not hand him, he reads via Hoopla. I have since used the service for the same thing.

Want to take a moment and browse the huge collections available via Hoopla? Well, no time like the present! Take a quick gander at all the Audiobooks, Movies, Music, Comics, Ebooks, and  Television Shows at your fingertips!

Want to know some of the curious and simply interesting things I have found via Hoopla just to get you started? How hoopla3about the non-fiction mythology guide Percy Jackson’s Greek Heroes, or a book with instructions and patterns for Quick & Easy Crochet Cowls. Perhaps the very first episode of the original Lone Ranger television show or the Audiobook of The Scarlet Pimpernel is more your speed? Do you want to help you children learn french with the help of cartoon dinosaurs, or maybe try a new work out from Jillian Michaels? Personally, I am currently reading the hoopla2first graphic novel of Lucifer, while my husband is pursuing a variety of titles after having finished up all the published volumes of The Walking Dead.

The variety is huge! Frankly, I am sometimes overwhelmed by the the choices and have to pace myself so that I do not hit my limit of materials before the end of any given month- simply because there are so many choices and I am too excited to read or watch something right now to hold back from clicking that borrow button.

Need some technical help with Hoopla or still have some questions? Please comment below and I will answer any questions I can, and if I do not know the answer I will get the information for you. If you do not want to wait for me to get back to a computer to answer, you can also try our information page, the official hoopla support page, or give us a call at 203-272-2245 and choose the reference desk option.

What’s Happening at Cheshire Library in September

Did you know that September is Library Card Sign-up Month?  A time to remind parents and children that a library card is the most important school supply of all. While you don’t need a library card to participate in our great programs, there are a lot of great things your library card can do for you, so don’t miss out!

On our program roster this month:

bookMindfulness Workshop for Kids

Thursdays, September 3, 10, 17, 24, October 1, 8, 15, 22 at 4:00 pm. 

Children are leading an increasingly busy life with school, sports events, music lessons and more. So they also experience that rushed pace.  Mindfulness techniques train you to pay attention to those things in the present moment in a nonjudgmental and accepting manner. This gives children the opportunity to stop and choose a response thoughtfully rather than reacting impulsively. Parents/caregivers will be participating in this 8-week program as well through mindfulness exercises with your child and through a book discussion.  The book Mindful Parenting by Dr. Kristen Race will be used to discuss techniques for mindful parenting.  Register on our website beginning August 15.


SAT Preparation Seminar

Tuesday Sep 8, 2015, 6:30  –  8:00 PM

Prominent language arts tutor, Ellis Ratner, will  present this free SAT Preparation Seminar. This program will address all aspects of the Reading and Writing Sections, including sentence completion, reading comprehension, grammar and essay writing.  Attendees will also receive, free of charge, an SAT Preparation Primer authored by Mr. Ratner.  Please register on our website.


Bouncing Babies

Mondays at 10:00 AM

This new drop-in program is a special time to interact with stories, songs, rhymes, and lap bounces. This fun and interactive time features music, repetition, rhymes, puppets, instruments, and felt boards. A must-do for babies and toddlers! Ages birth to 2 years.Drop-in, no registration required.


Curious George Curiosity Day

Thursday Sep 17, 2015, 6:00  –  6:45 PM

Each year fun-filled, family-friendly “Curiosity Day” celebrations occur in cities around the country celebrating everyone’s favorite monkey, Curious George. Come join the Cheshire Public Library Curiosity Celebration full of stories and songs, and a snack even Curious George would love. This program is a family friendly program, best for kids ages 2 and up. (REGISTRATION?)


Fab Film Saturday: Disney’s Cinderella

Saturday Sep 19, 2015, 2:00  –  4:00 PM

Come enjoy some great box office kids’ movies with Fab Film Saturdays at Cheshire Public Library!

Disney’s CINDERELLA (2015).  Celebrate Disney’s CINDERELLA, a modern classic that shines with beauty, imagination… and magic! Despite being bulled by her stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and stepsisters, a spirited Ella (Lily James) resolves to take charge of her fate. Add a royal ball, a Fairy Godmother (Helenal Bonham-Carter) and a glass slipper, and suddenly — magic becomes reality! Running Time 2 hours, 24 minutes.  Rated PG. No registration required.  Feel free to bring your own snacks!


Cigar Box Purse Craft Class

Thursday Sep 24, 2015, 6:00  –  8:00 PM

Please join Vanessa Fasanella as she teaches how to make cigar box purse in this adult crafting class. Design purse and handles; transform a recycled cigar box into a usable purse.  This adult only class is free and all materials will be provided.  Registration required as space is limited so register early. Registration on our website.

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 3.38.01 PMTown-Wide Photo Scavenger Hunt

Saturday Sep 26, 2015, 9:30 AM  –  4:30 PM

Grab your friends, family, and mobile device for a scavenger hunt that will take you all around Cheshire! To participate, form a team that will fit in one vehicle, pick up a list of clues from Cheshire Library on the morning of the hunt, and drive around town solving each clue. Post a photo of each clue to Instagram and use the tag #cheshirehunt2015, then return to the Library in the afternoon for refreshments and prizes. Prizes will be chosen across several categories, such as creativity and number of clues solved, and by random drawing.

Pre-registration of teams is required. One team and one Instagram account per vehicle.

9:30-11:00 am – Clue pick-up in Baldwin Room (Instagram help will be available)

10:00 am – Donuts with Grownups Storytime on the Third Floor

3:30 pm – Post-hunt party in Baldwin Room
Please register on our website.


Donuts with Grownups Storytime

Saturday Sep 26, 2015, 10:00 AM

Donuts with Grownups Storytime is designed especially for working families with children ages 3 and up who can’t make it to our regularly schedule storytimes during the week. Enjoy crafts, activities, music, stories and of course Donuts as a family!  This program is designed as a family event to give bonding time.  Each session will also have a literacy building station to help young ones start building necessary pre-literacy skills or enhance those skills for older children.  Best suited for children age 3-8. No Registration Required. This program will meet on the Third Floor of the Library.


Help, I’m Addicted to Sugar! (and white flour)

Monday Sep 28, 2015, 6:30  –  8:00 PM

Are afternoon and evening munchies getting the better of you? Do chips, cookies and breads call your name – even though your good intentions and knowledge try to push them away? Getting over these uncontrollable eating urges can be a lot easier than you think, and it doesn’t even have much to do with willpower at all. This is a highly motivational presentation showing exactly why this “vicious cookie cycle” occurs – and most importantly, what to do about it. Seating for this event is limited.  Please register online or call 203-272-2245, ext. 4.


Jacket.aspx‘Who Was’ Book Club: HELEN KELLER

Wednesday Sep 30, 2015, 4:00  –  5:00 PM

If you love reading books from the ‘Who Was’ series, than this is the book club for you! At the meeting, we’ll chat about what we discovered in the book and do one or more fun activities inspired by that persons life. No need to register – all fans of the series are welcome! Copies of Who Was Helen Keller? will be available to borrow from the Children’s Room.


Colonial Goodwife

Wednesday Sep 30, 2015, 6:30  –  8:00 PM

colonial_goodwife_nonpdf_long_logoThe “Not-So-Good Life of The Colonial Goodwife” not only makes audience members laugh and grimace, but it also honors our foremothers. It’s not about quilting bees and spinning wheels – it’s an interactive presentation about the little-known issues faced by New England’s colonial women.Enjoy a complimentary cup of organic herbal Women’s Tonic Tea as author Velya Jancz-Urban shares tidbits about issues faced by everyday 18th-century New England women. Seating for this event is limited.  Please register online or call 203-272-2245, ext. 4.