May 31, 2020

Matching children’s books with families receiving free farm produce

"At a time when many people are in need, two area booksellers have teamed up with other organizations to propose a unique idea: match families receiving free farm produce with children’s books." Read more here.

Want to support them? Click here.

May 21, 2020

How to Be a Person

Join The Odyssey Bookshop on Wednesday, May 27 at 6:30pm on Zoom for a virtual event with Catherine Newman, author of How to Be a Person: 65 Hugely Useful, super-Important Skills to Learn Before You're Grown Up.

This virtual event is open to all ages! You can join the webinar on Zoom here.

Families are encouraged to tune in together, and to submit questions for Catherine ahead of the event. Submit your questions here!
*Questions about joining a Zoom event? Please email*

About the Book

For the kid who leaves a wet towel wadded up on the floor or forgets to put a new roll on the toilet-paper thingy, humorous writer and etiquette columnist Catherine Newman has created the ultimate guidebook to becoming a person whom everyone will like being around more. Jam-packed with tips, tricks, and skills — all illustrated in an irresistible graphic novel–style — this book shows kids just how easy it is to free themselves from parental nagging and become more dependable — and they’ll like themselves better, too! They’ll learn how to deal with dirty rooms, care for pets and cactuses, stick up for somebody, and fold a T-shirt. They’ll even get a crash course on using the kitchen (including how to turn a 33-cent package of ramen into dinner) and a boot camp for lending a hand outside the house (mowing, shoveling, and fixing something loose has never been easier). This handbook to becoming beyond helpful promises that every kid can be a valued and valuable member of the grown-up world.

About the Author

Catherine Newman is the author of Waiting for Birdy, Catastrophic Happiness, and One Mixed-Up Night, and the coauthor of Stitch Camp. She is the etiquette columnist for Real Simple magazine and the editor of the James Beard Award–winning kids’ cooking magazine ChopChop. Newman has contributed to publications including the New York TimesO the Oprah Magazine, and Parents. She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, with her family. Visit her at

Join the Event!

This event is free and open to the public! Please join us on Zoom here.
Please submit your questions for the author before the event here.

Get Your Copy

Until the library reopens and you can check out a copy, feel free to purchase one at The Odyssey Bookshop!

May 19, 2020

Got a kid who needs a little math help?

We know some folks who want to help...
 (Click on image to enlarge.)

May 18, 2020

Amherst Life in 2020: Documenting Experiences

The Jones Library Special Collections department needs your help! Our mission is to record Amherst’s history and it’s essential that these unprecedented times are well documented. Please help us by going to our website to fill out a short form or to learn about other ways to share your experiences with us. 
Consider sharing this webpage with others in the community. The more varied the voices, the richer the representation. Amherst is a diverse community and we want this project to include as many viewpoints as possible.

May 15, 2020

May 14, 2020

Special ways to order books in lockdown from a bookstore

Maybe this is also how we'll be able to request books from the Jones Library when they reopen?
 (Click on image to go to the website and see it much bigger.)

May 13, 2020

Since it's Ramadan, why not explore Islamic art?

Over 500 beautiful manuscripts from the Islamic world are now digitized and free to download. Go wander through and enjoy.

May 12, 2020

National Limerick Day!

In honor of this illustrious day, the Friends challenge you to amaze and astound your friends and family with all the made-up (or not!) limericks you can. We'll get things started:

There once was a group of Friends,
Who, for the library, would go to all ends,
They tirelessly raised money
For programs serious and funny,
On your generosity they depends.

Happy National Limerick Day, Friends! Go forth and rhyme!

May 10, 2020

"Once upon a time in my future..."
UNESCO and the Idries Shah Foundation announce "World Tales," a short story competition for kids ages 12-18. Learn more here.

May 6, 2020

Guess the novels with only the protagonist's name!

We had a little trouble, Friends, we're not going to lie. 
Some of those guys? Shaking our heads...

May 4, 2020

Classics Book Group

Ilan Stavans has invited the library to co-sponsor and participate in an awesome virtual Classics Book Group, meeting on May 14 and 21 at 8 pm EDT. It's a 2-part discussion. May's virtual book group discussion will explore Passing by Nella Larsen.

 (Click on image to enlarge.)
All the details are on the Jones Library calendar.