216 N Marshall Ave

Litchfield MN 55355


All Pioneerland

While all Pioneerland Library System buildings remain closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Curbside Pick-up of library items is available. You may place items on hold using the online catalog. Library staff will call you to schedule a pickup time once your hold is ready. Pickup days/times vary by location. Please contact your library if you have questions or need assistance in using this service.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Closed Labor Day

The Litchfield Public Library will be closed on Monday, September 2, for Labor Day.

Friday, August 23, 2019

The House of Mrs. Pease

By Jan Pease

During these last two weeks of August we are taking a break from story hour.  Our Lego building group, “Brickheads” still gets together on Thursday nights at 6:30 to build wonderful creations.  I have to tell you about one masterpiece created by a six-year-old.  She called it “The Mrs. Pease House.”  She put together a sweet little gray-haired figure (Mrs. Pease) and added a dog, a dinosaur, various trees, aliens, a horse, and a slide, and I realized that Mrs. Pease contributes to her very fertile imagination.  What a tribute!  This fun program will continue without a break.

Story hour programs will begin again as school starts in Litchfield the week of September 3rd. Wednesday morning Toddler Time, for toddlers up to age 3, will start at 10:15, Wednesday, September 4th.  Preschool Story Hour, for ages three and up, will resume Friday, September 6th, at 10:00.  Children under three years of age must be accompanied by a care giver, and older siblings are always welcome.

Magic Bob and the Beautiful Lynn Marie will present “The Magic of Eric Carle” on Saturday, September 14, at 2:00.  This is something new for us to try on a Saturday afternoon.  Magic Bob always presents a wonderful magic show, and his tribute to Eric Carle will be fun and amazing.  2019 marks the 50th anniversary of Eric Carle’s book, “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.” 

On Friday, September 20  the library will have special guests Mothrmöv, who will present a musical story hour, “The Ugly Duckling.”  The artists include Hannah Spivey, Harpist, Susan Miranda, Oboist, and Brittany Zales, Mover.  I’m excited to see what they do with the familiar fairy tale.   I understand having a harpist play her harp, and an oboist play her oboe, but a mover?  This should be an outstanding program. 

Library programs for elementary and teen students will be announced at a later date.   We’re making some changes at the library and aren’t quite ready to announce a schedule of programs for middle school and high school.                                                                                                                           

The Tail Waggin' Tutors from Therapy Dogs International chapter 252 McLeod County/Meeker County will visit the library on Saturday October 12.  I love to listen to the hum of young readers sitting with these kind dogs, practicing their reading skills.

Remember that reading records need to be turned in August 31.  Several children have asked me when we will count the entries for the guessing jar.  We’ll count the candy and sort the entries on Friday, August 30. 

Someone told me years ago that time would seem to move faster and faster as I got older, and it has.   This has really been a high-speed summer!  I’m looking forward to what fall will bring.   See you at the library!

Friday, August 16, 2019

Crazy About Audiobooks

by Beth Cronk, Litchfield head librarian

Audiobooks are the fastest-growing reading format in the U.S.  According to the Audio Publishers Association’s 2019 survey, 50% of Americans age twelve and older have listened to an audiobook, the highest percentage ever.  Our e-book supplier, Overdrive, is also seeing substantial growth in downloadable audiobook checkouts nationwide.  Checkouts have increased an average of 32% a year since 2012.

The most common location to listen to audiobooks is in the car, but listening at home is almost as popular.  More than half of all audiobook listeners say they’re finding time in their lives to add audiobook listening to the time they spend reading print books, making it possible for them to finish more books.  The typical audiobook listener is between the ages of 18 and 45 and a fan of podcasts.
Pioneerland Library System offers downloadable audiobooks for checkout through our Overdrive service.  There are currently 1,484 downloadable audiobooks in our collection.  These can be accessed through the Pioneerland website on a computer or through the Overdrive or Libby app on a phone or tablet.  They are free to check out with a Pioneerland library card, and they never incur late fees.

One of our newest downloadable audios is The Chain by Adrian McKinty.  This New York Times bestseller is a psychological thriller with a chilling premise: a stranger has kidnapped your child in order to get their own abducted child back.  To get yours back alive, you must pay a ransom – and kidnap someone else’s child. 

Another new offering in Pioneerland’s downloadable audios is The Gone Dead by Chanelle Benz.  The Tonight Show featured this book among the finalists in its summer reads contest.  A young woman returns to her childhood home in the Mississippi Delta for the first time since her father’s death when she was four years old.  She finds the isolated shack she inherited unsettling to visit, and she begins to unravel the mystery of her father’s accident.

We also have audiobooks on CD at the Litchfield Library and all of the libraries in the system.  The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo is one of our newest additions.  This bestseller was one of Reese Witherspoon’s book club selections.  Young dressmaker and dancehall girl Ji Lin accidentally finds a severed finger that’s being sought by an 11-year-old houseboy to bury with his master’s body, leading them onto dangerous crisscrossing paths.  Every reviewer commented on the way the author vividly created 1930s colonial Malaysia. 

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams isn’t a new book; it was published in 1979.  The library recently added the audiobook version on CD, read by Stephen Fry.  This wacky story of an ordinary British man who is rescued from the destruction of Earth by his undercover alien friend is a classic the family can enjoy together – at least teenagers and older. 

Other new audiobooks on CD at the Litchfield Library include 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari, Journey to Munich by Jacqueline Winspear, Inspired by Rachel Held Evans, and Plum Rains by Andromeda Romano-Lax.  Pick one up, or download one, and maybe you’ll become an audiobook fan, too.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Job opening at Litchfield Library


Job Description: Provides reference, research, and specialized circulation services to library patrons in locating and utilizing library materials and services.   Handles incoming and outgoing interlibrary loan deliveries.  Processes new magazines.  Leads pre-teen/teen programs.

Qualifications:  Knowledge of library system operations, procedures, and resources; ability to work effectively with the general public; ability to plan, implement, and promote specialized events and programs; ability to maintain cooperative working relationships with coworkers; proficient with computers and related technology; ability to work independently; strong communication skills.

Education and experience required: High school diploma or equivalency, plus one year of directly-related experience; or a combination of education, experience and training necessary to perform the essential requirements of the work. 

Physical Requirements:  Must be able to walk, stoop, kneel, crouch, reach, lift, feel, grasp, talk, hear and see.  Some light lifting and carrying may be required up to 25 pounds.

Hours:  Average of 20.75 hours per week: Mondays 1-8 pm, Tuesdays 1-8 pm, Wednesdays 9:30 am-2 pm, and one to two Saturdays per month 9:45 am – 5 pm.  Additional subbing as needed.

Application deadline:  August 27, 2019

Applications available at the library or .  Submit them to:
Beth Cronk
Litchfield Public Library
P.O. Box 220
Litchfield, MN 55355
Phone: (320)693-2483

Saturday, August 10, 2019

What! Five Decades!!

By Jan Pease

One of the most mind-boggling things that took place this summer was the celebration of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, the historic flight that landed two Americans on the moon. Can you  imagine that it’s been that long?  In celebration of this event, the library added two children’s books to the collection.  The first book, “Destination Moon, the Remarkable and Improbable Voyage of Apollo 11” by Richard Maurer, looks at the famous launch with fresh eyes.  When I read about all of the events that took place before they touched down, I wonder how they survived.                                                                                                                                                                                             

The Astronaut Who Painted the Moon,” was written by Dean Robbins.  This interesting book is about Alan Bean, an unusual astronaut who was also an artist.  A member of Apollo 12, he was the fourth man to walk on the moon.  He took many pictures, unique because of his artistic point of view.  When he returned to Earth, he began to paint.  This book includes images of his work, which may also be seen online at   Mr. Bean passed away May 26, 2018 at the age of 86.

How do you teach a young child to be kind?  Yes, as the famous poem by Dorothy Law Nolte PhD says, “Children Learn What They Live.”  We think children know what we mean when we say, “be kind.”  But do they?  “Be Kind: You Can Make the World a Happier Place! 125 Kind Things to Say and Do,” by Naomi Shulman, is the book we all need.  This book has more than 100 concrete ideas that will be a springboard for talking about this problem and could help change lives, one at a time.

“Depression: Your Questions Answered,” by Romeo Vitelli, is a small book that also tackles a big problem.  The Center for Disease Control and National Institute of Mental Health websites both have outstanding resources available online at no cost.  But they present almost too much information.  This little book by Romeo Vitelli provides an accessible start to understanding depression, and illness shared by 13.3% of the the U.S. population ages 12 to 17.

Two more books are worth mentioning while thinking about new nonfiction books.  One is “Animals Up Close,” by the staff at DK (formerly known as Dorling Kindersley).  The title itself says it all: “Animals Up Close:  Animals as you’ve never seen before!  This book uses the classic DK approach to photography, carried to an extreme close-up.

Finally, we have “Dinosaurs by the Numbers,” part of Steve Jenkins’  “By the Numbers” series.  He  calls this series “infographics readers.” They have a lot of pictures and charts and not much text, perfect for those kids who say like Sergeant Friday, “The facts, ma’am, just the facts.” 

Check out an interesting nonfiction book at Litchfield library!

Friday, August 2, 2019

Books to read on the patio - or in the A/C

by Beth Cronk, Litchfield head librarian

I just saw an online post that said “August is the Sunday of summer.”  I agree.  I love summer and summer break from school, and I dread the arrival of fall – even though September is actually wonderful.  I always find that the key to dealing with late summer is to throw myself into enjoying it.  If you’re someone whose idea of fun is digging into a good book while sitting outside – or if you’d rather escape the heat by reading one in the air conditioning – pick up one of these absorbing new novels at the Litchfield library.

Keeping Lucy by T. Greenwood is the story of a mother in the late 1960s.  Ginny’s husband and his powerful family convince her to send their newborn daughter Lucy to live at an institution because she has Down Syndrome, and to grieve her as though she were dead.  But two years later, Ginny’s best friend sees an investigative story showing that the institution is a terrible place, and the two of them head out to get the little girl.  Based on real events, this is a story of how far a mother would go to protect her child. 

Ruth Ware has become a popular author with books such as The Woman in Cabin 10 and The Death of Mrs. Westaway.  Her newest is The Turn of the Key.  It’s a Gothic thriller featuring the modern technology of a smart house that malfunctions in terrifying ways.  The protagonist takes a nanny job with amazing pay on a Scottish estate with seemingly perfect children, but the novel is told from prison where she awaits trial for a murder she says she didn’t commit.  Ware’s style is sometimes compared to Agatha Christie.

A Dangerous Man is the latest in the Elvis Cole and Joe Pike series by Robert Crais.  Joe Pike catches two men who abduct a young bank teller when Joe happens to be at the bank on everyday business.  But after the men post bail, they’re murdered and the young woman disappears.  Joe reaches out to his friend Elvis Cole to help him solve the mystery, which turns out to be much more complicated than it first appears.  Reviewers say this is a particularly strong entry in the series.

Labyrinth is the 23rd book in Catherine Coulter’s FBI Thrillers series.  Agents Savich and Sherlock get involved in a strange case when Sherlock’s car is struck by another vehicle at an intersection, followed by a body hitting her windshield.  When she wakes up in the hospital after the accident, she learns that the man ran away and no one knows who he is.  DNA evidence points to a missing CIA analyst.  Meanwhile Savich is called in on a case involving a kidnapped woman who identifies a small town sheriff’s nephew as her captor, before the sheriff arrests both her and her rescuer.  Coulter is known for novels with many twists and plenty of suspense.

Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson is a dark and funny thriller about secrets from the past.  A new woman joins a book club and starts a game of “never have I ever,” encouraging the other women to share naughty secrets over wine.  But the main character has a wonderful family life to protect and a past to hide, which the mysterious new woman somehow knows about. 

Other new additions at the library include The New Girl by Daniel Silva (a spy thriller), Wherever She Goes by Kelly Armstrong (a psychological thriller), Backlash by Brad Thor (a political thriller), FKA USA by Reed King (a dystopian novel), and Aunt Dimity and the Heart of Gold by Nancy Atherton (a cozy mystery).  Find something to read that suits your preferences while you enjoy the rest of summer or wait eagerly for fall.