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Shelburne Library shares weekly news

May 23, 2024   ·   0 Comments

Many of you have been in asking what the big surprise is, and we are SO CLOSE to announcing the fun. In fact, some of you may even see it this week. Stay tuned for details for the official unveiling, coming in the next couple of weeks!

 Library Literary Event featuring Ian Hamilton- We welcome author of the Ava Lee series, Ian Hamilton, to YOUR Library on Sunday, May 26th @ 2pm. This event requires registration and has a limited capacity, so don’t delay in letting us know you’re coming.

Staff Pick of the Week: The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams: Young Esme is stuck spending her childhood in the “Scriptorium”, a garden shed in Oxford where her father and a team of lexicographers are compiling the very first Oxford English Dictionary. Told to make herself unnoticed, Esme starts secretly collecting words that have been misplaced or discarded by the team of men. As she begins exploring the words’ meanings outside the walls of the Scriptorium, she learns how language is connected to power and social inequality (by the nature of whose words and experiences get recorded and validated, versus whose get erased). Against the backdrop of World War I and the women’s suffrage movement, Esme finds herself working covertly amongst the lexicographers, trying to preserve and legitimize words that are tied to the lives of women.

Why Amy Recommends it: This is a fascinating look at how the first Oxford English Dictionary was created – a monumental endeavour that I’d never given much thought to previously. I loved the tenacious character of Esme, and how her fictional story was used to highlight the very real and critical contributions that women were making to the Dictionary behind-the-scenes, despite their work going largely unrecognized. I gained a new appreciation for how dictionaries are compiled (and ever evolving), and how impactful they are as linguistic records that shape our understandings of the world. I’d recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction and authors such as Kristin Hannah or Sue Monk Kidd.



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