Dale’s Top 4 of 2014

Mr Mercedes by Stephen King

In the frigid pre-dawn hours, in a distressed Midwestern city, hundreds of desperate unemployed folks are lined up for a spot at a job fair. Without warning, a lone driver plows through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes, running over the innocent, backing up, and charging again. Eight people are killed; fifteen are wounded. The killer escapes.



Guardians of the Galaxy (Movie)

A group of intergalactic criminals are forced to work together to stop a fanatical warrior from taking control of the universe.





The Martian by Andy Weir

Astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive.




Captain America. The Winter Soldier (Movie)

Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and battles a new threat from old history: the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier.

Julie’s Top 4 of 2014!

Wolf by Mo Hayder

When a vagrant–the Walking Man–finds a dog wandering alone with a scrap of paper with the words “HELP US” attached to its collar, he’s sure it’s a desperate plea from someone in trouble and calls on Detective Inspector Jack Caffery to investigate. Meanwhile a wealthy local family is fighting for their lives, held hostage in their remote home. As their ordeal becomes increasingly bizarre and humiliating, the family begins to wonder: Is this really a random crime?

Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat: A Calvin and Hobbes Collection by Bill Watterson

Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat chronicles another segment of the multifarious adventures of this wild child and his faithful, but skeptical, friend. If the best cartoons compel readers to identify themselves within the funny frames, then all who enjoy Calvin and Hobbes are creative, imaginative, and … bad, bad, bad! Calvin, the irascible little boy with the stuffed tiger who comes to life are a pair bound for trouble. Boring school lessons become occasions for death-defying alien air battles, speeding snow sled descents elicit philosophical discussions on the meaning of life, and Hobbe’s natural inclination to pounce on his little friend wreaks havoc on Calvin’s sense of security.

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

It’s a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone. Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help. Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?

A Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey

When three cousins in 1814 London discover their magical powers and family lineage of witchcraft, they accidentally open the gates to the underworld allowing the spirits of dark witches known as the Greymalkin Sisters to hunt and kill young debutante witches for their powers.

Top 4 of 2014!

It’s that time of year again when we look back at the previous year and choose our top reads/movies/music/games and TV! This year we asked staff to choose their top 4 of 2014 (books/movies/music/games and TV that they read/watched/played/listened to in 2014 rather than what was published in 2014). We’ll be posting their picks all this week! Come into the library and check out the display–you can also tell us your top 4 of 2014 so we can put your picks on display too!

First up is Helen!

Helen’s Top 4 of 2014

Don’t Look Back by Gregg Hurwitz

In the mountains of Oaxaca, a major storm wipes out the roads and all communication with the outside world, trapping a tour group in the jungle with a dangerous predator with a secret to protect. With her only resource her determination to live, single mother Eve must fight a dangerous foe and survive against incredible odds–if she’s to make it back home alive.


The Devil’s Workshop by Alex Grecian

London, 1890. Four vicious murderers have escaped from prison, part of a plan gone terribly wrong, and now it is up to Walter Day, Nevil Hammersmith, and the rest of Scotland Yard’s Murder Squad to hunt down the convicts before the men can resume their bloody spree. But they might already be too late. The killers have retribution in mind, and one of them is heading straight toward a member of the Murder Squad, and his family



Mayhem by Sarah Pinborough

When a rotting torso is discovered in the vault of New Scotland Yard, it doesn’t take Dr. Thomas Bond, Police Surgeon, long to realize that there is a second killer at work in the city where, only a few days before, Jack the Ripper brutally murdered two women in one night. Though just as gruesome, this is the hand of a colder killer, one who lacks Jack’s emotion. And, as more headless and limbless torsos find their way into the Thames, Dr. Bond becomes obsessed with finding the killer.



Innocent Blood by James Rollins

The second installment in the bestselling gothic series, about an ancient order who speak the truth behind Christ’s miracles and strive to protect the world from evil – from the winning writerly combo of James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell.

Vertical Gardening and Other Gardening Ideas

I thought I’d post some links etc… to garden idea sites, one of which is our Pinterest site. You may have to join Pinterest to see it. Sorry. It can be sort of addictive.

Huge living wall. We won’t be doing this, but you get the idea.

Doable. Same Buzzfeed post as above.

Click the picture above for a Buzzfeed post on vertical gardens.

Vertical Gardening

Inspired by gardens she saw from her trip to Tuscany, Master Gardener Ann Marie Bartoo has proposed a vertical garden project for the TPL Gardens.

What’s a vertical garden? Here are some examples of vertical gardens and vertical garden elements.

Urban living wall

Vertical garden sample pix

Modular garden cylinders

Hanging gutter garden

Another living wall

Why do it? You can probably think of reasons on your own, but some that come to mind:

  • wicked cool looking
  • universal accessibility- no stooping necessary, wheelchair accessible
  • efficient and aesthetically pleasing use of space
  • possibilities for re-using/up-cycling materials.
  • modular and movable

TPL garden committee members can comment on this post or send Bernardo ideas. We’d like to build some systems over the winter and install them in the spring. Keep an eye out for this and other posts.

A Thank You from The Friends of the Topsham Public Library

Thank You, Topsham

The Friends of the Topsham Public Library once again want to extend a sincere thank you to the amazing citizens of Topsham and the entire community. We had a very successful book sale.  Your support is never ending and much appreciated. We brought in over $8,000 which will be used to support programs and activities at the library that are not part of the town budget.

Volunteers help by sorting books into categories; moving boxes of sorted books to and from their storage spaces; getting tables set up; putting books up on the tables; keeping books neat during the sale; cashiering; breaking down after the sale; and in dozens of other ways. Our list wouldn’t be complete without thanking the people who donated their beloved books and those who bought them. See you next year.

The following is a list of individuals and local businesses that deserve special thanks for their contributions.

Area Businesses:  Hannaford Supermarket, Androscoggin Animal Hospital, Androscoggin Dental Care, Atlantic Regional Federal Credit Union, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, Brunswick Business Center, Cosmic Stone & Garden Supply, Flying Point Construction, Lakeside Crafters, Lynch & Newman LLC,  McConnell Motors Inc, Merrill’s Bookshop, MSA Architects, Northern Sun Family Healthcare, Shines & Jecker Labs, Smith & Associates CPA, Keith Spiro Photography, T. Kevin Sullivan DMD-LLC, Sunset Farms, The Barn – Yoga, Topsham Garden Club

Town of Topsham Staff, with special thanks to Ed Caron, Dennis Cox, Pam LeDuc, Kelly LaFountain

The Highlands, book donors and staff

Library Trustees: President, Matt Newman, Jerry Davis, Jen Ecker, Anne Eustis, Bruce Kingdon, Larissa Vigue Picard, Teri Schultz, Megan Therriault, Joe Trafton, Sally VonBenken

Library Staff: Jen Balser, Cyndi Burne, Bernardo Feliciano, Emma Gibbon, Julie McDuff,  Linda Meadows,  Dale Morgan, Lynne Morgan, Susan Preece, Mariah Sewall, Helen Tomer

Keeping volunteers fed: Topsham Public Library Board of Trustees

Bowdoin students for “Common Good Day” who moved boxes out of the shed: Chandler Tinsman, Carolina Deifelt Streese, Elena Gleed, Lee Moriarty, Taryn Watkins, Axig Fuksman-Kumpa, Venecia Xu, Emily Mumford, Brewster Taylor, Samuel Monkman

Members of the Friends and other volunteers who sorted books, set up tables, worked during the sale and helped with clean up: Alison Harris, Melissa Hoy, Nate Hoy, Mathea Hoy, Shirley Davis, Ruth Mlotek, Anne Eustis, Phyllis Kelly, Ross Lewis, Ann Lewis, Becca Lewis, Jessica Lewis, Barbara Laurie,  Barry O’Neil, Sue Mooney, Lori Aliberti, Teri Schultz, Kim Fletcher, Claudia Beckwith, Sally VonBenken, Liz Volckening, Carol Williams, Mike Whitehead, Marge Whipple, David Whipple, Monique Barker, Jen Ecker, Rory Ecker, Jerry Davis, Kitty Hill, Ruth Ann Specht, Liz Pettigrew, Cynthia Crawford, Rhonda Lemieux, Diane Hender, Nancy Audet, Ruth Peck, Peg Nulle, Bill Keleher, Gloria Tomsa, Bill Tomsa, Joyce Munier, Bob Munier, Nancy Swinbourne, Kelly Bradshaw, Chris Almy, Sheila Cook, Sula Demers, Nancy King, Jay Collier, Lilly Collier, Doris Nieman, Troy Pelletier

For comments or suggestions for improving the sale, to add a name that has been left out, or to volunteer to help next year, please contact

Master Gardener Volunteers

The Maine Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Volunteers Program has been crucial in supplying volunteers, know-how and inspiration to the Topsham Public Library Gardens. The project began by bringing community volunteers together around an Eagle Scout project to shape the Children’s Garden into a learning and event space that would extend the library’s mission to its outdoor property. Master Gardeners turned out to be the best volunteers because they could be counted on to contribute knowledge, ideas, and commitment as well as sweat.


Sarah Wolpow started working at the TPL Gardens as a Master Gardener Volunteer. When she started her perennial garden design business SweetFern Perennial Garden Design, the library was her first customer.

Sarah_Barrow Image

Her “lower” maintenance, low water, spiral design can be seen in the garden today.


Echoes of the design, if not whole portions will be retained in the future plan. This one was also designed by Irene Barber, another Master Gardener Volunteer turned professional.


More than ever, implementing our future designs for the garden will take careful planning, thought, and organization. More than ever, we are looking for Master Gardener Volunteers to share their skills and passion for cultivating gardens AND community.

IrenePopcornsue2 WinterSeeds

Please include TPL Gardens on your Saturday, May 17


….to help us dig and have a good time this Saturday May 17th.

Volunteers are tremendously important to the TPL Gardens.  Saturday May 17, from 10AM until 1PM we are looking for energetic individuals to help us with a variety of duties.  We’re building different sorts of raised beds. We’ll need extra muscle power to dig, move soil, and shift pavers. The work will go quicker and be more fun the more people we have!

And for those of you that like the idea of doing something healthy – a couple hours of garden activity will burn a couple hundred calories.  Why not?  To sign up, please contact or just show up with work gloves  in the Children’s Garden between 10AM and 1pm on Saturday May 17.

The results are in….

Topsham’s favorite book is…. Harry Potter!

Joint Second Place: Divergent by Veronica Roth, Elephant and Piggie by Mo Willems
Joint Third Place: The Bible, Cave of the Clan Bear, Curious George, Geronimo Stilton, Gone with the Wind, Little Blue Truck, Pride and Prejudice, The Secret History, Smile, To Kill a Mockingbird, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Under the Tuscan Sun

Topsham’s favorite author is…Stephen King!

Second Place: J.R.R. Tolkien
Joint Third Place: Kenneth Roberts, Mo Willems, Neil Gaiman, Raina Telgemeier, Diana Gabaldon, Elisabetta Dami, John Bunyan

Here’s the full list: Tops of Topsham 2014