By Janet Arden
Adult Programs Librarian
---- — HAMPSTEAD —Spring Read 2014 is coming soon to the greater Hampstead community. The featured book is “Rules” by Cynthia Lord. It has won many prizes including the New Hampshire Great Stone Face Award and the prestigious Newbery Honor Medal.
Written for a young audience, this book is loved world-wide by children and adults. It is the story of twelve-year-old Catherine who just wants a normal life, but finds that almost impossible with her younger brother who has autism, and a family that revolves around his disability. She’s spent years trying to teach David the rules – from “no toys in the fish tank” to “keep your pants on in public” – in order to stop his embarrassing behaviors. The summer Catherine meets Jason, a paraplegic boy, and Kristi, the new girl next-door, it’s Catherine’s own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?
By the end of March, free paperback editions of this wonderful family book will be left in baskets at Bean Towne, Center Market, Hampstead Health and Fitness, TD Bank, and Town Hall. We encourage you to pick up a copy and read it.
The Hampstead Public Library will have several programs related to the book and its themes, including a middle school book discussion, a family craft day, a UNH professor speaking about physical fitness for students and adults with autism spectrum disorders, and a very special visit by the author Cynthia Lord on April 15.
The middle school book group begins meetings with teacher Mrs. Griffin, at 6:15 p.m. on Wed., March 19, at the Hampstead Public Library. Subsequent meetings are on March 25, April 2, and April 9. Participants do not have to be Hampstead Middle School students to join the group. Please call the library 603-329-6411 to sign-up or email firstname.lastname@example.org. This promises to be a fun and educational experience.
Another Spring Read event is the dramatic reading of the play “Rules by Cynthia Lord.” The novel was adapted for the stage by the Lenoir-Rhyne University Playmakers. The Hampstead Public Library is seeking willing and enthusiastic participants, ages 9 to adult, who would like to share their theatrical talents and take part in the reading. You do not have to be a Hampstead resident to participate. To sign-up for this fun creative experience, please email Janet at email@example.com or call the library 603-329-6411.
Library staff and members of the Hampstead Special Education Community Network encourage the community to participate in the Spring Read 2014. We hope that many children, teens and adults take this opportunity to read “Rules,” which contains the unique perspective of a youth who must find her ‘normal’ in a world that is very much affected by her brother and his disability.
More details about the Spring Read and related events are coming soon! Special thanks go to the Friends of the Hampstead Public Library for funding the books and programming.