Shelf Life: Beyond Beach Reads

With school out, more hours of sun, and an emphasis on restoration, summer is slated to be the perfect time to relax. But for some, work, childcare, and jam-packed schedules don’t allow that dream of unwinding to become reality. Sitting down to read amidst it all can seem impossible. 

Yet, making time to read is crucial. The National Commission on Reading found that being read to prior to starting school was the most significant factor in influencing a child’s early educational success. In addition, the commission also found that school-age children are more likely to engage in independent reading simply if they have access to books. 

And kids aren’t the only ones who benefit from reading. According to Literacy Suffolk—which aims to strengthen adult literacy and raise literacy-related awareness—14% of adults in Suffolk County fall below basic literacy. Strengthening those reading, writing, and communication skills can increase personal freedom, contribute to economic betterment, and encourage participation in society.

So, for those who might not have the time or the resources to get books, Huntington Public Library is bringing books to you. Made possible by the Friends of the Library, a community-based organization that is independent of the library and its staff, book stands are popping up town-wide.

Take, for example, the train station. According to MTA’s Annual Ridership Report, 89.8 million passengers rode the LIRR in 2018, with over 19 million of them taking the Port Jefferson/Huntington line. Now, Huntington Station passengers waiting for their train can browse a freestanding shelf of donated books to take with them on their journey. There’s no check out, no due date, and no questions asked.

If you are able to squeeze in a beach trip, book carts are ready and waiting at both West Neck Beach and Gold Star Battalion. With titles for all ages and tastes, there is something for everyone.

Huntington Public Library also established a Little Free Library in Huntington Town Hall. Little Free Library was founded in 2009 by Todd Bol, who created a free book exchange in his front yard and sparked a book sharing movement. Ten years later, there are now 80,000 Little Free Libraries nationwide, with the one established by Huntington Public Library among them. Leave a book, take a book, and spread the word.

No matter how busy your summer, keep an eye out for books appearing in familiar places, waiting to be read.


Upcoming Events

July 16, Mark Feinsand Book Signing: Book Revue hosts Mark Feinsand, executive reporter for, as he speaks about and signs copies of his new book Mission 27. Event is free, and begins at 7 PM.

July 18, Readings Under the Tent: Meet local authors Michael Bobelian, Amy Giles, and Jeannie Moon at Melville’s Arboretum park. Hear the authors read from their work, sign books, and participate in Q & A sessions. The event is free, and begins at 7 PM.

July 21, Amateur Writers of Long Island: Join writers of all genres and abilities in the back room of Panera in Huntington Village from 1-6 PM to give and receive feedback.

July 25th, Harborfields Public Library Poetry Reading: Poets are encouraged to share their work among supportive writers at Harborfields Public Library’s poetry reading. The program will run from 2 – 4 PM. Registration is not required; all are welcome. supports literacy efforts. If you have book-related information you’d like to share, email Molly Prep

Shelf Life: Local Romance Author Jeannie Moon

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