Happy Friday Links
I hope everyone had a good holiday weekend and you are returning to a somewhat normal routine. It was always nice to have extra days off work while I was still working, but it was hard to return to work after the time off. Since I’ve retired, every day seems like a holiday to me. I still occasionally feel like I’m playing hooky by not going to work every day.
I have a love-hate relationship with this newsletter. I like looking for links readers would enjoy reading and putting together the “links” newsletters. I enjoy featuring other bookish creators in the “peeks” newsletters; for everything else, I seem to have run out of something to say. I am reading more than I ever had in the past, but I’m not a good “book reviewer,” so I’m struggling to write about what I’m reading. I keep thinking this struggle is temporary and the magic will return, but it hasn’t happened yet. Thankfully, it’s time for Happy Friday Links, and I’ve gathered more than I can fit into this newsletter. Having too many is a good problem to have, I guess, so let’s get started.
Not only are books being banned, school boards are eliminating librarian positions and repurposing libraries for something else. This Education Week article looks at what students miss out on when there are no librarians.
I love libraries and make a point of visiting them when I stumble across them in my travels. This Daily Passport article shows you the twenty most stunning libraries in the world.
I remember the story about the Make-a-Wish child from several years ago who wanted to be “Batkid” for a day and solve crimes with Batman. Here he is almost grown up and cancer-free for the last several years.
This article will help you take your charcuterie board to the next level for Christmas.
I love the concept of “food styling,” and I love to see what goes on behind the scenes and how things come together. This Food & Wine article looks at the food styling secrets behind the Apple TV series Lessons in Chemistry.
I believe I shared this link about this same time last year. NPR has added 2023 to its “Books We Love” website.
Milwaukee Public Library uses book nerds and a dancing accountant on its social media to make its library cool and bring in a new generation of patrons.
Giving readers “bookish” gifts can be difficult a lot of the time. This BookRiot article helps you find a great bookish gift for the readers in your life.
If you are a Tournament of Books follower, the TOB has released its 2024 long list; thanks tofromfor putting this on my radar so early in the TOB season. I discovered the TOB a few years ago, and I enjoy following along to see what the reviewers say about each book and which book ultimately wins.
Things aren’t always as they seem; what it looks like on the surface can be hiding so much underneath. From all appearances, this shouldn’t have happened, but it did. Read how this town received an incredible gift when a resident passed on.
Libraries do more than just provide books. While each library has different offerings to meet the needs of its community, most libraries also offer things and services that one wouldn’t necessarily think would be in their local library. This NPR article tells you about ways a library might be able to save you some money.
Audiobook narrators are some of the most talented people in the bookish community. In a recent newsletter,interviews the audiobook narrator of her book, With Love, from Cold World; what an interesting interview this is, and now I appreciate narrators even more than before.
I think gift guides are so fun to look through for ideas, so I’m spreading the joy so you can have fun, too. Here are a few more gift guides that might help you find the perfect gift for those on your list. Sri Juneja athas an article on buying strategies and gifts for children. Kirsten fromwrote an article on buying a book that is just right for every reader on your list. Amie McGraham from has an article listing several “foodie” stocking stuffers and a couple of recipes you won’t be able to resist making for your family. Chelsey Feder from The Eclectic Reader calls her listing of bookish gifts “eclectic gifts for bookish besties,” and she has some great gifts on her list to check out. And for the last list, Sarah Hildreth from the has an article with a list of favorite books to gift and includes bookish accessories and a few assorted non-bookish favorites for adults and children.
Whew, that’s a lot of gift guides. While visiting those newsletters, be sure to subscribe, as the bookish content is even better than the gift guides.
December is usually a slow month for new releases, at least for the genres of books I read, but there are some this month worth mentioning. I’ll be back next week with a few of the books I’m looking forward to in December and the ones I might be gifting to a couple of readers in my life.
What does your reading life look like during December? Do you still find time to read, or does the holiday season take away any available time? Do you do anything special during the holiday season to make the month of December even more fun than it already is? You can tell me about it in the comments below.
December used to be a really busy month for me at work, and I felt like I barely kept my head above water, but this year, I’m looking forward to leaning into the holiday season to find out what I’ve been missing all these years. I look forward to visiting neighboring towns and town squares to see and participate in their holiday celebrations. I love looking at light displays, listening to carolers, visiting shops and boutiques, and letting the Christmas spirit wash over me.
I’ve got several books I’ve started that I’d like to finish before year-end. Who knows if I’ll complete them or let a shiny, new cover steal my attention, but no matter what, I am enjoying my reading life, and I’m planning what that will look like for 2024. Have a wonderful weekend filled with the things you enjoy, and happy reading!
Some of the links in this newsletter may be affiliate links. That means that if you click through and purchase anything, I may earn a small commission. This costs you nothing and helps me feed my voracious reading habit, and for that, I thank you.