What to Read: 4/12

Librarians at the Burnham Memorial Library review "The Finger and the Nose" by Paula Merlán and the "The Last of the Hill Farms" by Richard W. Brown.

What to Read is a biweekly column written by librarians at the Burnham Memorial Library in Colchester. 


The Last of the Hill Farms: Echoes of Vermont’s Past by Richard W. Brown – Adult Non-Fiction, 2018

Ann Doubleday, Adult Services

Photographer Richard Brown moved to the Northeast Kingdom in 1968 and found a uniquely Vermont way of life that was quickly disappearing. Through his astonishingly beautiful, crisp, black and white photographs, he set out to record and preserve for posterity this bygone era. The unsentimental, stark, yet stunning photographs capture both the beauty and harsh realities of the land and the people.

The people seem shaped by the land and the land by the people – weathered and solid. Lined faces reflect years of hard work as well as a gentle tenderness. He shows us the small beauties in everyday life. We can almost smell the freshly made pie and the hay in the horse drawn cart.

Brown’s book is likely to be nostalgic for many Vermonters, perhaps reviving memories of their own grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles. Newcomers to Vermont and those too young to remember will surely discover in these pages a new appreciation for the land and people who came before.

The Finger and the Nose by Paula Merlán, Illustrated by Gómez – Juvenile fiction, 2019

Kelly L McCagg, Library Director

Sophie is a little girl who picks her nose. She picks it so frequently in fact that Tim, the index finger on her left hand, has constructed himself a rather comfortable home in her nasal passage, complete with kitchen and library. This polypsal addition has caused poor Sophie’s nose to grow to an alarming size.

Merlán’s story is playful and ridiculous; supported by equally bright and silly illustrations. Sure to entertain both adult and child, this thought provoking tale might just give your own little nosepicker pause.

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