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Celebrate National Library Week with a Writer

April 8, 2018

Marilyn LevensonWhat better way to celebrate the 65th anniversary of National Library Week than with the author of The Haunted Library series? I had the privilege of meeting Marilyn Levinson, a/k/a Allison Brook at a conference several years ago. and felt an immediate kinship. Since then, as so often happens, we’ve continued our friendship through social media connections. I’ll share more about Marilyn/Allison later. Now, let’s hear from her in her own words.

Like most avid readers, I’ve been spending time in libraries as far back as I can remember. I learned early on that while libraries might look different on the outside, inside all were full of books, magazines and helpful librarians. I remember walking to the library when I was in elementary school in Brooklyn and how I loved spending time in the old library in Danbury Connecticut, when my parents would bring me to town from our summer cottage on a nearby lake. Over time, I checked out every book of fairy tales along with animal stories. I appreciated the helpful librarians’ suggestions, even though they occasionally reminded me that no, I couldn’t take out books from the adult section.

I did eventually graduate to the adult section, and borrowed many of the classics. While attending Syracuse University, I often studied in the library. I even worked in the library stacks for a period of time, sending requested books down to the circulation desk via a creaking dumbwaiter and reading Nietzsche in between “orders.”

Electronics have become an important aspect of our daily life, and nowhere is this more evident than in our local libraries. Patrons order and renew books on line, borrow e-books, and sign up for classes via the internet. These days libraries are often the center of our communities. They offer all sorts of classes and lectures; they show movies, host bus trips, and present live entertainment.

It was while attending an outdoor drumming presentation at my own library that I got Death Overdue cover copythe idea for my Haunted Library mystery series. It occurred to me that a librarian in charge of Programs and Events would make the perfect sleuth! She could bring in all sorts of programs and introduce various presenters. The perfect setting for a mystery series. Add a library ghost and a library cat and presto! A series was born!

One or two readers have complained to me that the Clover Ridge Library where Carrie Singleton, my sleuth, works is not like real libraries. Not true! Almost all of the programs offered in DEATH OVERDUE are also offered in my Long Island library and others in the area. We are offered musical presentations, movies, exercise classes, and my favorite—food demonstration programs. The reading room is always filled with patrons reading newspapers and magazines. The library continues to play an important part in my life. It still offers books and reading material and so much more.

Thanks, Marilyn/Allison, for sharing your love of libraries with us. I wish you the best of luck with The Haunted Library books and your other projects. I look forward to following Carrie Singleton’s adventures.

As promised, here’s a bit about Marilyn/Allison. A former Spanish teacher, she writes mysteries, romantic suspense, and novels for young readers. DEATH OVERDUE was a Library Journal’s “Pick of the Month” on Goodreads’ list of 200 Most Popular Books published in October 2017 and is a nominee for an Agatha award for Best Contemporary Novel. As Marilyn Levinson, she writes the Golden Age of Mystery Book Club series. Her website is:   I hope you’ll stop by and visit. She loves to hear from readers.

The next book in the series, READ AND GONE, will be published in September 2018.




8 Comments leave one →
  1. April 9, 2018 11:55 AM

    When I was young, I fell in love with libraries. I gravitated toward mysteries and they remain my favorites today.

    • April 9, 2018 12:09 PM

      I’ve always loved libraries too, Vicki – especially the mystery section. Thanks for stopping by.

  2. Marie Long permalink
    April 10, 2018 8:50 AM

    The library is essential. I like a book in my hands, the older the better.. I used to love the old cards where once I found someone who had read the book in 1936 and it was a neat feeling. I could never afford to buy all the books I read.

    • April 10, 2018 10:17 AM

      I hear you, Marie. I love books too – and I loved the pockets with the cards in them too. Sometimes I would discover that a friend had read the book I was checking out. I’d call her and we could talk about the book. Thanks for sharing.

  3. April 10, 2018 3:28 PM

    My all-time favorite job was working as a Page at a small library and, yes, they offered all kinds of activities. Not all of them involved reading. Sometimes I think libraries are like the center of the universe. : ) Thank you so much for sharing, Marilyn.

    • April 11, 2018 6:01 AM

      Libraries as the “center of the universe” – love that idea. Thanks for stopping by, Marja.

  4. maggie8king permalink
    April 10, 2018 4:04 PM

    I loved the card catalogs. Thanks, Sandy and Marilyn. This is a wonderful tribute to libraries.

    • April 11, 2018 6:02 AM

      I loved card catalogs too, Maggie. A special kind of window shopping. Thanks for adding your comment.

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