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The Light Between Worlds by Laura E. Weymouth

Six years ago, with bombs and air raid sirens screaming all around them, Philippa, Jamie, and Evelyn Hapwell stepped from the dark and terror of their parents’ London bomb shelter in 1944 and into another world.  The Woodlands are sunlight and starlight and magic, a place where tree spirits sing, rivers have water guardians, centaurs and other mythical beasts roam the forests, and a mighty stag is the Guardian of all its creatures.  The Woodlands are also on the brink of war with the Empire.  Greeted by Cervus, Guardian of the Wood, the three siblings discovered that it was the power of Evelyn’s desperate wish to be free of their own world that allowed Cervus to call them.  And though death and destruction loom heavy on the horizon in the Woodlands, just as in their own world, Philippa and Jamie and Ev agree to help in any way they can – as long as Cervus promises to send them home at the end, with no time lost in their own world.

Almost six years spent in the Woodlands – five years, and a war, and many friends and enemies made and lost.  And now, six years after returning, the Hapwells are the same age they were when Cervus sent them back.  Philippa is in America at college, trying to become her own person, trying desparately to forget and fit into her life.  Jamie is at Oxford, and Ev at St. Agatha’s, her first year at school without her sister to hold her together.  Ev wants only to remember – and to go home.  After all, Cervus made a promise – A Woodlands heart always finds its way home.  And Ev’s heart will forever belong to the Woodlands.  But as she clings to hope and searches for a way home, long after Philippa and Jamie have resigned themselves to an ordinary life in our world, Ev begins to falter under the weight of hope, love, and family.  When she vanishes into the wood behind St. Agatha’s one cold winter night, Philippa and Jamie must decide how far they are willing to go to find their sister – or if she wants to be found.

If you’re the sort of person who looks for magic in the woods and the fields and all the dark, deep green places of the world, and hopes for secret passages in old houses, and talks to trees because you know they might be listening, and feels that fizzing frisson of hope and dread (but mostly hope) every time you step through a stone passage, or a birch ring, or find a fairy ring of mushrooms, this gorgeous book is for you.  Inspired by Narnia and the question of what becomes of heroes after they’re returned to their world, this lovely book is one of my favorite reads of this year.  Haunting, lyrical, and full of a fierce longing for magic found and lost, The Light Between Worlds explores what it would be like to come back and try to live in the world as an ordinary person when you’ve been everything – and everywhere – extraordinary.  If you’re hoping for a little magic to find you in the coming year, you’ll be sure to find it in the pages of this beautiful gem of a book.

A Fine Dessert History Story Time!

Join Miss Megan and Lindsey from the Goodhue County Historical Society for a fun-filled history story time on Friday, December 28 and 10:30 AM!  We’ll read the marvelous A Fine Dessert: Four Centuries, Four Families, One Delicious Treat written by Emily Jenkins and illustrated by Sophie Blackall, and then Lindsey will treat us to a look at some historical kitchen appliances (have you ever tried to whip cream with a twig whisk?  Me either!).  And then, my favorite part – we’ll do a little whisking ourselves and create yummy homemade whipped cream!  Not to worry, we’ll also have non-dairy whipped cream on hand so kiddos who are dairy-free will be able to enjoy the fun of whipping cream and tasting some of our sweet treat.  Books and treats – what could be a better way to wrap up the year?

Registration for this program is recommended so we can be sure to have enough cream on hand – call or stop by the library to sign your kiddos up.  Program attendance is limited to 24 children.

Holiday Fun for Families!

Looking for some holiday fun for the kids?  Then head to the library on Tuesday and Wednesday evening for some festive fun for families!

On Tuesday, December 18th we’ll host our annual Jingle Bell Jammie Jam story time at 6:00 PM in the story well – we’ve got the jingle bells covered, so all you need to do is get cozy in your favorite PJs and join Megan and Cyd for holiday stories, songs, and plenty of cheer!  We even wrote a letter to the North Pole to see if a certain someone in a red suit would be available to take a little break from toy making to join us for a story.  We think we’ve been pretty good this year, so here’s hoping!

If you’re looking to create something lovely and homemade (or library-made!) for your tree this year, we have a special family ornament crafting night planned on Wednesday, December 19th from 4:00 – 6:00 PM in the Foot Room.  We have more than a few different types of ornaments planned for you to design, make and take home to hang in a special spot – including the pour paint ornaments Anna from ArtReach showed us how to make!  All ages welcome – the ornaments can be as easy or as complicated as you’d like to make them.

See you next week!