On The Job – Andrew Budrick

Upholstery repairman

Andrew Budrick is the owner of Budrick’s Mobile Upholstery Repair, an automobile interior and furniture upholstery repair service based in Manchester.

Explain your job and what it entails.

I own a mobile upholstery repair business that specializes in auto interiors and furniture. I typically repair burn holes, rips and tears in leather, worn out and faded seats, or seams that are coming undone. I sometimes get calls for boat repairs or even restaurant furniture. I mix my own colors to match the upholstery, hand-sew seams back together and have a specialized process of repair for each individual job. Almost all jobs are different, but when it comes to automobiles, certain vehicles have the same defective areas of wear.

How long have you had this job?

I have been doing this for 16 years, but started working for myself nine years ago.

What led you to this career field and your current job?

I had moved to Florida from New Hampshire at the age of 21 with three years of college and no degree and no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I happened to meet a guy who offered me a job which I knew nothing about. He hired me as his helper and taught me everything I know about this specialized line of work. I worked for him for about seven years before moving back to New Hampshire in 2012. Now that I had the knowledge, I started going from car lot to car lot, passing out business cards.

What kind of education or training did you need?

I had on-the-job training for the seven years I was in Florida. The hands-on experience was the best kind of training I could have gotten. I had a really good teacher who gave me one-on-one training six days a week for seven years or so.

What is your typical at-work uniform or attire?

I don’t have any type of uniform. I dress according to the weather, and nothing too nice, because the dyes and paints I use get on my clothes.

How has your job changed over the course of the pandemic?

During Covid, just like most people, I was out of work. When things started opening up again, I started getting calls again from my old accounts. At the end of Covid, my girlfriend pushed to help me advertise more by helping me build a website and posting my business on Google and Facebook. She does all the advertising, which helps me focus on just doing my job. I’m busier now than before Covid because of this.

What do you wish you’d known at the beginning of your career?

I wish I knew more about running a business, but I’ve learned along the way.

What do you wish other people knew about your job?

I wish they knew how much patience and attention to detail goes into what I do. It took me about four years to get really good at all aspects of my work. It’s not something you can learn overnight.

What was the first job you ever had?

I was a stock boy at Market Basket.

What’s the best piece of work-related advice you’ve ever received?

If you enjoy what you’re doing, you’ll never work a day in your life.

Five favorites

Favorite book:
Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice
Favorite movie: Gladiator
Favorite music: Depends on my mood, but classic rock is always good.
Favorite food: Pizza and coffee Oreo milkshakes.
Favorite thing about NH: That we get to experience all four seasons.

Featured photo: Andrew Budrick. Courtesy photo.

Kiddie Pool 22/06/30

Family fun for the weekend

Shows galore

• O’neil Cinemas’ Summer Kids Series starts on Monday, July 4, with a 10 a.m. showing of Trolls: World Tour (PG, 2020). The movie will also screen on Wednesday, July 6, at 10 a.m. The series continues through the week of Aug. 8, with a new family-friendly film screening Mondays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m. Tickets cost $2 for attendees age 11 and lower, $3 for ages 12 and older, and the cinema is offering a $6 popcorn-and-drink combo pack. For movie times, visit oneilcinemas.com/epping-nh/events.

• The Belknap Mill (25 Beacon St. E. in Laconia) continues its kicking off its Kids in the Park Summer Series on Monday, July 4, with live production ofSleeping Beauty by professional acting troupe Impact, will have an hour long runtime, and will begin at 10 a.m. A prince must work with a good fairy to wake up the princess and save her kingdom from the sleepy spell it was put under, according to the website. Attendance is free. The line-up of events includes storytimes, live dance, nature events and more. See belknapmill.org/mill-events.

• The Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St. in Manchester; palacetheatre.org, 668-5588) begins its Children’s Summer Series with magician BJ Hickman, Tuesday, July 5, to Friday, July 8. Hickman, a Manchester native, is a member of the Academy of Magical Arts, Hollywood Magical Castle, and the International Brotherhood of Magicians, according to the website. His one-man shows are filled with comedy, audience interactions and mystifying illusions, the website said. Showtimes are at 10 a.m. on all days and 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday through Thursday. Tickets cost $10.

Fairs for the crafty

• Artisans from across New England will be selling their homemade goods at the Hampton Falls Liberty Craft Festival, in the Hampton Falls town common (4 Lincoln Ave.) this weekend. There will be more than 75 juried artisans selling everything from custom smartphone cases and handmade beef jerky to decorative throw pillows and paintings. The festival will run Saturday, July 2, deom 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, July 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. See castleberryfairs.com.

• Celebrate Independence Day with American-made and handmade products at the Gunstock 4th of July Weekend Craft Fair on Saturday, July 2, and Sunday, July 3, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Gunstock Mountain Resort (719 Cherry Valley Road, Gilford). More than 90 artisans will be selling carefully crafted goods, including cedar wood furniture, wildlife photography, gourmet oils and vinegars, New Hampshire maple syrups, and much more. The event is rain or shine and free to attend. Leashed dogs are welcome. Visit joycescraftshows.com.

Children’s Museum fun

The Children’s Museum (6 Washington St., Dover) has a whole host of activities for families to do in July. Every Tuesday and Saturday at 11 a.m., the Learning Garden will have Edible Education to help teach children about healthy food options and what is healthy for the environment. Wacky Art Wednesdays will run at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. every Wednesday of July. Kids will get to create a unique art project that fits the museum’s weekly theme. Every Thursday at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. is World Culture Thursday. Kids will do a craft, play a game, or make some art that celebrates a different culture from around the world. Science Fridays will have curious kids conducting experiments that launch into larger lessons about different topics in science. All of the programs above are drop-in and are included when families sign up for playtime at the museum. For more information visit childrens-museum.org.

Pick your own

• Have big berry fun over the long weekend at area pick-your-own strawberry farms. In last week’s (June 23) issue of the Hippo, Matt Ingersoll and Jack Walsh took at look at this year’s strawberry harvest, including a list of farms where you can pick your own or just buy berries and get right to the shortcake eating part of your day. Go to hippopress.com and look for the e-edition version of last week’s issue; the story is on page 22.

• Pumpkin Blossom Farm’s annual U-Pick Lavender is slated to start Wednesday, July 6 and will run through Sunday, July 24, at the farm at 393 Pumpkin Hill Road in Warner. Participants will receive sanitized picking supplies and will get instructions on how to bundle their freshly cut flowers. Picking is daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Bundles will be discounted on Monday through Thursday, costing $10; Friday, Saturday and Sunday the bundles will cost $12. Visit pumpkinblossomfarm.com or call 456-2443.

Treasure Hunt 22/06/30

Dear Donna,

We have an assortment of these refrigerator leftover saving dishes. I inherited them through my family. We never use them so now we are wondering if there still is a use or collectibility for them.

Thank you for any help you can provide.


Dear Carla,

What you inherited is several pieces of jadeite (opaque green) refrigerator dishes. Great color and collectible too.

Your pieces are from the 1950s and done by the Jeannette Co. This was after they purchased the McKee Co. They produced them until the company closed in the 1970s. Even though there are other colors as well, the green jadeite seems to still today have a high demand for dishware, utility ware, etc.

Carla, the values depend on their being in great condition with no chips or cracks, and complete sets (dish and cover). I think for the amount you have the value would be in the $100 range as long as there is no damage.

Thanks for sharing and I hope you find a new home for your pieces.


Time to tackle those early summer chores

Weeding the garden is only the beginning

With the advent of summer, it is time to buckle down and get a few jobs done in the garden. In the vegetable garden it’s time to thin out extra plants that are crowding each other. In addition to carrots and beets, others like rutabagas, kohlrabi and parsnips that are started by seed in the ground may need thinning.

Carrot seeds are tiny, so we don’t often plant them one by one. Instead we tend to sprinkle them and, by gum, most of them grow. I maintain that thinning carrots needs to happen by the Fourth of July, so get to work. If they are really close together, you may want to use scissors to cut off the extras at the soil line to avoid pulling up carrots you are trying to save.

I like to be efficient at whatever I do, and that includes keeping a relatively weed-free garden. Many weeds quickly mature, flower, and produce seeds. Your job is to keep them from producing seeds or crowding out your plants.

One way to control weeds is to keep them from getting the sunlight they need to grow. You can do this by mulching. I spread out newspapers over the soil and cover them with straw, hay or leaves. Four to six pages of newspaper keeps out light, inhibiting weeds. Three or four inches of straw will keep the papers in place. Earthworms eat the paper over the summer, and newsprint is done with soy-based inks, so you are not adding heavy metals to your soil (which was the case years ago).

This method works well on walkways and around big plants in the vegetable garden but is more problematic for onions and carrots, which are small and closer together. I use grass clippings or chopped leaves, without the newspaper, around small plants.

Mulching in the flower garden is good, too. It keeps down weeds and holds in moisture. But beware: Too much mulch can keep rain from reaching the roots of your perennials. An inch or two of ground bark helps a lot, but 3 or 4 inches will keep quick showers from getting water to your plants.

Some gardeners use landscape fabric under bark mulch, but I generally do not. I find pernicious weeds eventually send roots through the woven fabric and this makes weeding very difficult. Landscape fabric can also constrict perennials as they expand over time, choking them.

What about plain old black plastic? I don’t use it. Sunshine breaks it down over time and makes a mess. It also keeps air and water from getting to the soil, which must affect soil microorganisms. Additionally, the plastic ends up in the waste stream, which I want to avoid.

This is the time to prune lilacs, forsythia and other spring- and early summer-blooming trees and shrubs. They set their buds for next spring in the summer, so if you wait until fall to prune, you will reduce the number of blossoms. But don’t take a hedge trimmer and just buzz off a foot or two. Make each cut thoughtfully.

I start by deciding the perfect height and shape for the shrub. I recently reduced the height of some lilacs from 12 feet or more to a more manageable 8 feet or so. I cut back each stem to a place where two branches meet. If you cut any branch to a random spot, the branch may not heal well. It heals best where two branches meet. Try to hide your cuts by cutting bigger branches in places where foliage from other branches will obscure your surgery.

You can also cut back tall fall-blooming perennial flowers by a third to delay blooming and create shorter plants. This is best done in mid-May, but it’s not too late. Sometimes I will cut back the outer stems of a big clump and leave the center stems at full length. That gives me a longer bloom time, and the lower stems help support the taller stems.

Be forewarned: Not all perennials will bloom if you cut them back. I wouldn’t do it for peonies or iris, for example, but anything like an aster will respond well. Experiment with just a few plants at first. Better yet, read Tracy DiSabato Aust’s book, The Well Tended Perennial Garden: Planting and Pruning Techniques. It has detailed advice for most common garden plants.

a watering timer hooked up to 2 hoses
A timer will allow you to water when away. Photo by Henry Homeyer.

If we have a dry summer, you may need to water. Established perennials should not need added water, but your vegetable garden might. I don’t favor overhead sprinklers because they water everything: plants, walkways and weeds. I prefer a watering wand, which is a device I attach to my hose. It is a 30-inch aluminum wand with a sprinkler head and a valve. I can direct the water exactly where I want it. I like a brand called Dramm because the sprinkler head allows fast, gentle watering.

Watering cans are good, too. They allow you to see just how much water you are applying. This is important for new trees, which need 5 gallons a week or so. A sprinkler might seem like it is delivering a lot of water, but may not be.

A watering timer will deliver water while you are away on vacation. They attach to your spigot and allow you to use an overhead sprinkler or a soaker hose. So don’t let your garden dictate your vacation schedule. With mulch and a watering system you can come back from vacation with nothing worse than a lawn that needs cutting!

Featured photo: The first step of mulching as I do it is to put down newspaper. Photo by Henry Homeyer.

Fishing for smallies

Smallmouth bass provide an angling experience like no other

“Make him go where he doesn’t want to go,” fishing guide Mark Beauchesne said as I tried to reel in what could only be described as an aggressive fish on the Merrimack River in Concord a few years ago.

The fish in question, a smallmouth bass, dove under the boat and then suddenly sprinted toward the surface, leaping from the water, shaking its head from side to side feverishly. Then it was diving again in relentless, explosive bursts. It felt like it took all I had to keep hold of the rod, never mind figuring out how to make the fish go anywhere.

But as I reeled it closer to the boat, Beauchesne calmly and expertly slid a net into the water, securing the fish and ensuring this would not be a story of the one that got away.

While I was certainly pleased with the size of the fish — probably four pounds or so, Beauchesne guessed — it was more the sheer ferocity and energy the fish exhibited when hooked that I’ll never forget.

“Inch for inch, pound for pound, the gamest fish that swims,” wrote Dr. James Henshall in his 1881 book, The Book of the Black Bass.

“They just don’t have any quit,” said Beauchesne, who, in addition to being a fishing guide, is advertising and promotions coordinator at the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. “They spend a lot of time airborne. They’re just a very exciting fish to catch.”

The smallmouth bass, also referred to as black bass or a “smallie,” is the most popular game fish in New Hampshire, recently surpassing trout, according to the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, which surveys its license holders, Beauchesne said.

“The accessibility that we have to them and with the tackle that’s available here now that’s accessible and easy to use, it just makes it easy for anybody to get into bass fishing,” Beauchesne said.

New Hampshire historian Jack Noon, who wrote the book The Bassing of New Hampshire, noted smallmouth bass were introduced in New Hampshire in 1864 in Rust Pond in Wolfeboro, which is right next to Lake Winnipesaukee. New Hampshire fisheries commissioners began stocking smallmouth four years later, ultimately introducing smallmouths to 140 lakes and ponds in New Hampshire, Noon said.

“The immediate reaction was incredibly positive,” said Noon, who also noted smallmouths had a less than positive impact on native trout populations upon introduction. “Smallmouths were very popular in New Hampshire, as they were a species that could be caught in summer when tourists were present and had leisure time. They were just very important for the tourist season.”

They still are, anglers agree, and the species can be targeted with a variety of tactics.

Stick baits, which are torpedo-shaped lures that mimic small fish, are popular lures for targeting smallmouth, as are soft plastic lures that take a variety of forms, including worms and crayfish. (I caught my smallmouth with Beauchesne right up against a cement piling with a plastic worm the fish hit as it dropped to the bottom.)

While live bait is effective for both largemouth and smallmouth bass, using live bait to target largemouth or smallmouth bass is prohibited from May 15 through June 15. Anglers must use artificial lures during that time period.

“They eat a variety of foods,” Beauchesne said. “Crayfish are common, the young of the year, yellow perch, sunfish, insects are often overlooked. People catch them with frogs coming out of their mouths. They take advantage of available food sources.”

Smallmouth bass thrive in rivers, lakes and ponds, though they prefer hard-bottomed areas, whereas the abundant largemouth bass tends to prefer softer, muddier bottoms, Beauchesne said.

An average smallmouth bass comes in at about 1.5 pounds and 15 to 16 inches. The state record is 7 pounds, 14.5 ounces. That whopper was caught on Goose Pond in Canaan in 1970.

Smallmouth bass are a warmwater fish and tend to be most active when the water temperature is between 55 and 75 degrees. Beauchesne notes rivers tend to stay in that range throughout the summer.

Beauchesne suggested using a 6-foot spinning rod with medium or medium-light action with eight-pound monofilament line.

Noon recalled fishing for smallmouth as an early teenager.

“I was fishing at night with a jitterbug, [which is a type of hard plastic topwater lure that chugs along right on the surface],” Noon said. “You just get a huge kick out of casting it out. It makes this glug, glug, glug sound and then all of a sudden [when the smallmouth hits the lure] it sounds like someone just threw a 20-pound rock into the lake.”

Be Prepared
As soon as you make that first cast, you need to be prepared and ready to handle fish, said Mark Beauchesne, advertising and promotions coordinator at the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. Beauchesne shared some advice:
Have needlenose pliers handy for removing hooks; don’t be digging them out of a tackle box once you’ve landed the fish.
Handle fish as little as possible; don’t let them flop around on the ground.
If the fish is deeply hooked, it’s better to cut off the line at the hook. It has a better chance of surviving with the hook in its mouth than if anglers cause more damage trying to remove it. “Smallmouth bass are set up to eat fish that have spines, like crayfish and other fish, after all,” Beauchesne said.

Featured photo: Mark Beauchesne with his catch. Photo by Mark Beauchesne.

Fireworks, festivals, parades and naturalization ceremonies

Events happening in New Hampshire on and around the Fourth of July

By Katelyn Sahagian


Independence Day is a time for cookouts, fireworks, parades and parties, as people say happy birthday to America.

One museum, Strawbery Banke in Portsmouth, has been taking it a step further for the past 20 years by holding a naturalization ceremony in conjunction with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the United States District Court – District of New Hampshire.

“I’m so very much looking forward to it,” said Veronica Lester, the spokesperson for the museum. “The joy that radiates from the new citizens will be something quite special to witness.”

Strawbery Banke was settled by British colonists in 1623; they named the area for either wild strawberries that grew along Piscataqua River or an estate in England. Sometime later, it was given the name Puddle Dock and went from wilderness outpost to newcomer neighborhood. People lived in the area until the 1950s, when Portsmouth officials closed the neighborhood for urban renewal.

The new citizens will take their Oath of Allegiance on the museum’s lawn, Puddle Dock, named after the disbanded neighborhood. Lester said that the land Strawbery Banke is on has always been a place for immigrants, whether the first British settlers, or immigrants from across the world in the 19th century.

“It seems fitting that the naturalization ceremony occurs at the museum that is this neighborhood of newcomers,” Lester said. “It’s a special ceremony that takes place at this special location.”

In addition to the celebration at Strawbery Banke, here are some other celebrations happening in the Granite State.

Amherst Fourth of July Celebration

Two days’ worth of celebration and entertainment, featuring fireworks, a festival on the town green, and a parade with classic cars competing for awards.

When: Sunday, July 3, festivities begin at 6 p.m. with fireworks. A second day of festivities, including the parade and festival, begins Monday, July 4, at 9:45 a.m.

Where: July 3 events at Souhegan High School, 412 Boston Post Road. July 4 parade leaves opposite the Wilkins School, 80 Boston Post Road.

Visit: amherstnh4th.org

Brookline parade and fireworks

When: Monday, July 4, 10 a.m., parade will step off. The fireworks will begin shortly after dusk, around 9 p.m.

Where: South Main Street, traveling down Route 130 to Richard Maghakian Memorial School, 22 Milford St. The fireworks will be over Lake Potanipo, Max Cohen Memorial Grove, 3 Mason Road.

Visit: brooklinenh.us

Canobie Lake Park fireworks

Stick around after a day at the amusement park for fireworks over the lake. The fireworks show is timed to patriotic music and the amusement park recommends viewers to watch them by the daVinci’s Dream ride.

When: Saturday, July 2, through Monday, July 4, 9:15 p.m.

Where: Canobie Lake Park, 85 N. Policy St., Salem

Visit: canobie.com

Concord Fourth of July Celebration

Featuring food, live music, fireworks and more

When: Monday, July 4, food vendors and live music begin at 5 p.m., fireworks at 9:20 p.m. (rain date is Tuesday, July 5).

Where: Memorial Field, 70 S. Fruit St.

Visit: concordnh.gov

Derry fireworks

When: Monday, July 4, dusk.

Where: Best viewing areas are Hood Commons, Crystal Avenue and Tsienneto Road

Visit: derry-nh.org

Exeter Independence Day Celebration

The American Independence Museum is hosting its 32nd annual American Independence Festival later than the holiday. Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the museum and meet with vendors, learn about cooking during the Revolutionary War, and watch military reenactments.

When: Saturday, July 16, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: 1 Governor’s Way

Cost: $10 for adults, $5 children 4 to 18, free for children under 4, veterans and active military, and museum members.

Visit: independencemuseum.org

Hampton Beach fireworks

When: Monday, July 4, 9:30 p.m.

Where: On the beach, across from B and C streets

Visit: hamptonbeach.org

Hopkinton Fourth of July Family Fun Day

Featuring a kiddie and main parade, family games, live music and a cookie bake-off

When: Monday, July 4, cookie competition drop off is from 9 to 11 a.m., kiddie parade begins at 11:30 a.m., main parade begins at noon and competition results are at 2 p.m.

Where: Parades begin at Hopkinton High School (297 Park Ave., Contoocook), then proceed through Fountain Square toward Contoocook Village Cemetery. Other festivities held at Houston Park, 41 Houston Drive, Hopkinton.

Visit: hopkintonrec.com

Laconia Celebration and Fireworks

Not only will Laconia be holding a parade and a festival full of vendors and live music, but there will be two different fireworks shows. The first will be at Opechee Park following the festival, and the second will be at Weirs Beach at midnight.

When: Sunday, July 3. The parade will start at 4:30 p.m., the band will start playing at 5:30 p.m. and fireworks will begin at 10 p.m. A second round of fireworks will start at midnight.

Where: The parade will start at the Laconia High School, 345 Union Ave., and end at Opechee Park, 915 Main St. The second round of fireworks will be atWeirs Beach.

Visit: laconianh.gov

Manchester Independence Day Celebration

Enjoy fireworks, live music, and food vendors.

When: Sunday, July 3. Live music starts at 7 p.m.; fireworks begin at 9:30 p.m.

Where: Arms Park, 10 Arms St.

Visit: manchesternh.gov

Merrimack Fourth of July festivities

A weekend-long celebration featuring fireworks, live music, a road race, a pancake breakfast and much more.

When: The Merrimack Concert Association’s annual Patriotic Concert in the Park will be held Sunday, July 3, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The 25th annual Merrimack Sparkler 5K Road Race will begin at 8 a.m. on Monday, July 4. The Merrimack Rotary Club Pancake Breakfast will be held from 8 to 11 a.m. A parade will begin at 1 p.m. and fireworks will begin at 9 p.m.

Where: Holiday concert at Abbie Griffin Park. Road race begins and ends at the Merrimack YMCA, 6 Henry Clay Drive. Pancake breakfast and fireworks at Merrimack High School, 38 McElwain St. The parade will start at the Commons Shopping Plaza, 515 Daniel Webster Hwy.

Visit: merrimackparksandrec.org

Milford Family Fun Day and fireworks

The holiday kicks off with a 5K, followed by a bike parade, family fun, live music and fireworks.

When: Saturday, July 2, family activities start at 1:30 p.m., concert is from 8 to 9:30 p.m. Fireworks begin at dusk.

Where: Keyes Memorial Park, Elm Street

Visit: milford.nh.gov

Nashua Fourth of July Celebration

Fireworks, live music, and hall of fame inductions.

When: Monday, July 4, children’s activities from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., concert at 6 p.m. featuring The Slakas. Fireworks begin at dusk.

Where: Holman Stadium, 67 Amherst St.

Visit: nashuanh.gov

New Boston Fourth of July Celebration

Featuring a parade, live music, a barbecue, ax throwing and the firing of the historic Molly Stark cannon.

When: Monday, July 4, parade begins at 10 a.m., fairgrounds will open at 4 p.m., opening ceremonies are at 5 p.m., and the fireworks will start at 9:30 p.m.

Where: Parade begins at the top of High Street and will end at the grounds of the Hillsborough County Youth Center Foundation, off River Road.

Visit: newboston4thofjuly.org

New London Fireworks

When: Saturday, July 1. Flares are at 9 p.m., fireworks will start at 9:30 p.m.

Where: Pleasant Lake

Visit: plpa.net

Portsmouth fireworks

When: Sunday, July 3, 9:15 p.m. (rain date is Tuesday, July 5)

Where: South Mill Pond, Junkins Ave. (across from Portsmouth City Hall)

Visit: portsmouthnh.com

Raymond Fourth of July Celebration

20th annual Fourth of July parade will have floats, horses, antique cars, clowns and more

When: Monday, July 4, parade at 9:30 a.m.

Where: Parade proceeds from Route 27 (Epping Street) down to the Raymond Town Common, onto Old Manchester Road and to Wight Street.

Visit: raymondareanews.com

Rye July 4th Celebration

When: Friday, July 1, live music will start at 7 p.m., fireworks will start at dusk.

Where: Parsons Field

Visit: town.rye.nh.us

Salem Independence Day Celebration

Featuring live music, food trucks, face painting, fireworks, a beer garden and more.

When: Saturday, July 2. Yappy Hour starts at noon, live music and face painting will be from 4 to 8 p.m., food and the beer garden will be open from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., and fireworks will start at dusk.

Where: The event this year is taking place at Tuscan Village, 9 Via Toscana.

Visit: townofsalemnh.org

Silver Lake Fireworks

When: Sunday, July 3, at dusk.

Where: Silver Lake, Hollis.

Visit: facebook.com/SilverLakeFireworks

Strawbery Banke Naturalization Ceremony

Come and celebrate Independence Day by welcoming new citizens in one of the oldest neighborhoods in New England.

When: Monday, July 4, 10 a.m.

Where: Strawbery Banke Museum, 14 Hancock St., Portsmouth.

Visit: strawberybanke.org

Suncook River Family Resort Live Music and Fireworks

Live music featuring Nicole Knox Murphy and Mystical Magic will accompany a celebration with games, kayaking, a bonfire and fireworks.

When: Sunday, July 3. Music starts at 3 p.m.; fireworks start at 9 p.m.

Where: 2 Fanny Drive, Suncook

Cost: $8 for people ages 12 and older.

Visit: campsuncookriver.com

Featured photo: Photo courtesy of the Strawbery Banke Museum.

The Art Roundup 22/06/30

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

Book Signing: Local author and second-grade teacher, Kari Allen will be at Gibson’s Bookstore for a signing of her newly published picture book, The Boy Who Loved Maps, on Wednesday, July 13, from 4:30 to 6 p.m at Gibson’s Bookstore (45 South Main Street, Concord). This is Allen’s first published picture book, it features illustrations by G. Brian Karas, a vetted and award winning artist. Books can be purchased at the event or pre-ordered online. Visit gibsonsbookstore.com.

Summer Exhibit and Sale
New Hampshire Art Association photographer Gary Samson will display his work in an exhibit titled “Unburdened Beauty: Portraits of Women in the 21st Century” at Creative Framing Solutions (410 Chestnut St., Manchester) from Friday, July 1, through Sunday, July 31. Samson takes a unique approach in his photography, shooting on film and opting to use a large wooden view camera mounted on a tripod, in an attempt to slow the process and allow room for thought and conversation to be captured in the final image, according to a press release sent by the Association. Samson is a New Hampshire native and “the seventh Artist Laureate of New Hampshire and has been awarded numerous grants, fellowships and honors for his photography and film work over the past five decades,” the release said. There will be an opening reception on Thursday, July 7, from 5 to 7 p.m. The exhibit will be open to view Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visit nhartassociation.org.

Famed comedian: Craig Ferguson, best known from the decade-spanning TV show The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS, will be coming to the Colonial Theatre (609 Main St, Laconia) as a part of his The Fancy Rascal tour on Saturday, Sept 3, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39 and are on sale now — they can be reserved online or by phone — but are expected to sell out quickly. Ferguson, born in Scotland, has had an immensely successful career in the American entertainment industry. His resume features roles on several notable shows, including The Drew Carey Show, in addition to film writing, directing and acting, and voice acting in the animated films Brave and How to Train Your Dragon. He’s also a New York Times bestselling author. Visit coloniallaconia.com or call the box office at 800-657-8774.

Spray paint art: Expressit Art Studio (140 Melendy Road, Hudson; 438-7885) will offer adults and youth age 8 and up the opportunity to come into the studio and try their hand at experimenting with mixed media: spray paint, paint and canvas on Thursday, July 7, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. The event will be held both inside and outside the studio, as participants will get to experience full creative reign over their piece. One canvas is included in the price of the ticket, but participants may bring in an additional 9-by-12 or larger canvas if they wish to make more than one piece. The studio requests that participants bring a mask to protect from the fumes of the spray paint; the studio will supply goggles. Tickets to participate cost $35. Visit expressitarts.com.

Concerts on the Common
Londonderry Arts Council will host musician Veronica Lewis on Wednesday, July 6, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Londonderry Town Common (265 Mammoth Road, Londonderry) as part of their Concerts on the Common program. According to American Songwriter Magazine, “Veronica Lewis is one of the most promising torchbearers of American rock ‘n’ roll,” as an artist she mixes the technique of different genres to create a unique sound. Her lyrics are both “thought provoking and humorous.” Lewis is a New Hampshire native, according to a press release sent by Concerts on the Common, “Veronica fuses these crucial elements together with the true language of the blues, and the energy of the early rock and rollers, like Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis, to create a truly individual style that is completely Veronica Lewis.” Lewis has traveled nationally, performing for different audiences. Admission to the concert is free. Visit londonderryartscouncil.org.



• “WARHOL SCREEN TESTS” In the mid-1960s, American multimedia artist Andy Warhol had shot more than 400 short, silent, black-and-white films of his friends at his studio in New York City. Warhol referred to the films, which were unscripted and played in slow motion, as “film portraits” or “stillies.” The exhibition will feature 20 of those films, provided by the Andy Warhol Museum, in loops across four large-scale projections. The Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St., Manchester). On display now through July 24. Museum admission costs $15 for adults, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, $10 for students, $5 for youth ages 13 through 17 and is free for children age 12 and under and museum members. Current museum hours are Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Monday through Wednesday. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org for more information.

• “ARGHAVAN KHOSRAVI” Artist’s surrealist paintings explore themes of exile, freedom and empowerment; center female protagonists; and allude to human rights issues, particularly those affecting women and immigrants. The Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St., Manchester). On display now through Sept. 5. Museum admission costs $15 for adults, $13 for seniors age 65 and up, $10 for students, $5 for youth ages 13 through 17 and is free for children age 12 and under and museum members. Current museum hours are Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Monday through Wednesday. Call 669-6144 or visit currier.org for more information.

• “THE PEOPLE’S SCULPTOR: THE LIFE AND WORKS OF JOHN ROGERS” Exhibit celebrates the art of American sculptor John Rogers, who came to Manchester in 1850, and explores the influence that Manchester had on Rogers’ life and work. Presented by the Manchester Historic Association. On view now through September. Millyard Museum (200 Bedford St., Manchester). Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission costs $8 for adults, $6 for seniors age 62 and up and college students, $4 for youth ages 12 through 18, and is free for kids under age 12. Call 622-7531 or visit manchesterhistoric.org/millyard-museum.

• “WOOL: CONTEMPORARY FIBER ART EXHIBITION Twiggs Gallery (254 King St., Boscawen) through Sept. 2. Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Visit twiggsgallery.wordpress.com or call 975-0015.

ROBIN CORNWELL The New Hampshire Boat Museum will host a member reception on Friday, July 1 for local artist Robin Cornwell, whose work will be featured in the museum’s gallery (399 Center St. in Wolfeboro; nhbm.org) in July. Cornwell produces art quilts as well as bark paper paintings and woven placemats and rugs. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. To learn more about Cornwell, visit robincornwellembellishments.com.

• “PIXELS, WOOD, CLAY” Two Villages Art Society presents an exhibition of work by artists Tony Gilmore, Rick Manganello and Caren Helm. The Bates Building (846 Main St., Contoocook). Aug. 12 through Sept. 9. Gallery hours are Thursday through Sunday, from noon to 4 p.m. There will be an opening reception on Sat., Aug. 13, from noon to 2 p.m. Visit twovillagesart.org or call 413-210-4372.

ART ON MAIN The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce present a year-round outdoor public art exhibition in Concord’s downtown featuring works by professional sculptors. All sculptures will be for sale. Visit concordnhchamber.com/creativeconcord, call 224-2508 or email tsink@concordnhchamber.com for more information.

SUMMER MEMBERS SHOW Two Villages Art Society presents a mixed media art show at the Bates Building (846 Main St., Contoocook) from July 1 through July 30.Visit twovillagesart.org or call 413-210-4372.

Fairs and markets

HAMPTON FALLS LIBERTY CRAFT FESTIVAL More than 75 juried artisans from all over New England will feature their work. Hampton Falls town common (4 Lincoln Ave.). Sat., July 2, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sun., July 3, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit castleberryfairs.com.

GUNSTOCK FOURTH OF JULY WEEKEND CRAFT FAIR There will be more than 90 artisans displaying and selling their work. Gunstock Mountain Resort (719 Cherry Valley Road, Gilford). Sat., July 2, and Sun., July 3, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit joycescraftshows.com.

CRAFT FAIR AT THE BAY More than 75 juried artisans from all over New England will feature their work. Sat., July 16, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sun., July 17, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Community House and Waterfront (24 Mount Major Highway, Alton Bay). Visit castleberryfairs.com.

CONCORD ARTS MARKET The juried outdoor artisan and fine art market runs one Saturday a month, June through October, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Market dates are July 30, Aug. 20, Sept. 17 and Oct. 15. Rollins Park, 33 Bow St., Concord. concordartsmarket.net. The first market will be held on Saturday, June 11. Visit concordartsmarket.net/summer-arts-market.html for more information.

CRAFTSMEN’S FAIR The annual nine-day outdoor craft fair hosted by the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen features hundreds of craftspeople with vendor booths, plus special craft exhibitions, demonstrations, hands-on workshops and more. Sat., Aug. 6, through Sun., Aug. 14. Mount Sunapee Resort, 1398 Route 103, Newbury. Call 224-3375 or visit nhcrafts.org for more information.

GREELEY PARK ART SHOW The annual outdoor juried art show hosted by Nashua Area Artists Association features a variety of artwork for sale. Greeley Park, 100 Concord St., Nashua. Sat., Aug. 20, and Sun., Aug. 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit nashuaarts.org/greeleyparkartshow.


NASHUA PUBLIC ART AUDIO TOUR Self-guided audio tours of the sculptures and murals in downtown Nashua, offered via the Distrx app, which uses Bluetooth iBeacon technology to automatically display photos and text and provides audio descriptions at each stop on the tour as tourists approach the works of art. Each tour has 10 to 15 stops. Free and accessible on Android and iOS on demand. Available in English and Spanish. Visit downtownnashua.org/nashua-art-tour for more information.

Workshops and classes

ART CLASSES Art classes for teens and adults, including Pottery, Stained Glass, Intermediate Watercolor and Clay Hand Building. Studio 550 Art Center (550 Elm St., Manchester). Five-week sessions. Classes met for two hours a week. Call 232-5597 or visit 550arts.com for the full schedule and cost details.

DRAWING & PAINTING CLASSES Art House Studios, 66 Hanover St., Suite 202, Manchester. Classes include Drawing Fundamentals, Painting in Acrylic, Drawing: Observation to Abstraction, Exploring Mixed Media, and Figure Drawing. Class sizes are limited to six students. Visit arthousestudios.org or email arthousejb@gmail.comfor more information.

GENERAL ART CLASSES Weekly art classes offered for both kids and adults of all skill levels and cover a variety of two-dimensional media, including drawing and painting with pastel, acrylic, watercolor and oils. Classes are held with small groups of three to eight to five students. Diane Crespo Fine Art Gallery (32 Hanover St., Manchester). Kids classes, open to ages 10 and up, are held on Thursdays and Fridays, from 4:15 to 5:45 p.m. Adult classes are held on Thursdays, from 6:30 to 8:15 p.m., and Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Tuition is pay-as-you-go at $20 per student per class, due upon arrival. Call 493-1677 or visit dianecrespofineart.com for availability.



STORYTELLING WORKSHOPS Monthly workshop series hosted by True Tales Live storytelling showcase. First Tuesday (except November), from 7 to 8:30 p.m., virtual, via Zoom. Registration is required. Visit truetaleslivenh.org for more information.


•​ ANYTHING GOES The Seacoast Repertory Theatre (125 Bow St., Portsmouth; seacoastrep.org, 433-4472) presents the musical through July 23, with showtimes on Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $32 to $52.

FOOTLOOSE Prescott Park Arts Festival (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth; prescottpark.org , 436-2848) presents this outdoor musical through Aug. 14, with showtimes on most Thursdays and Sundays at 7 p.m., and most Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., with some matinee showtimes TBA. General admission costs $5, and reserved seating tickets cost $55 to $150.

•​ THE COMPLETE WORKS OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (ABRIDGED) [REVISED] The Winnipesaukee Playhouse (33 Footlight Circle, Meredith; winnipesaukeeplayhouse.org) presents this show Wednesday, June 29, through July 9, with showtimes Tuesday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m., plus matinees on Thurs., June 30, and Tues., July 5, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $29 to $39.

INTO THE WOODS RGC Theatre presents this musical at Hatbox Theatre (inside the Steeplegate Mall, 270 Loudon Road, Concord; hatboxnh.com, 715-2315) July 8 through July 17, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $25 for adults, $22 for students, seniors and members and $19 for senior members.

THE GREAT ATLANTIC AND PACIFIC SHAKESPEARE COMPANY presented by Granite Playwrights at the Hatbox Theatre (inside the Steeplegate Mall, 270 Loudon Road, Concord; hatboxnh.com, 715-2315) from Aug. 19 through Aug. 28, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $22 for adults, $19 for students, seniors and members and $16 for senior members.

DISNEY’S FROZEN KIDS presented by the 2022 Bank of New Hampshire Children’s Summer Seriesat the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester; palacetheatre.org, 668-5588) Tuesday, Aug. 23, through Thursday, Aug. 25, at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., and Friday, Aug. 26, at 10 a.m. Tickets cost $10.

•​ LES MISERABLES presented by the Seacoast Repertory Theatre (125 Bow St., Portsmouth; seacoastrep.org, 433-4472) teen company from Aug. 25 through Sept. 4: Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $25 for students and $30 for adults.

CRUEL INTENTIONS: THE ’90s MUSICAL presented by the Actorsingers at the Court Street Theatre (14 Court St., Nashua; actorsingers.org) Friday, Aug. 26, through Sunday, Aug. 28.

SHREK THE MUSICAL presented by the Riverbend Youth Company at the Amato Center for the Performing Arts (56 Mont Vernon St., Milford; svbgc.org/amato-center) from Friday, Aug. 26, through Sunday, Aug. 28.



LISTEN AND LUNCH presented by Monadnock Music’s summer festival, David William Ross (guitar) performs at Depot Park in Peterborough, 12 Depot St, Thursday, July 7, from noon to 1 p.m., concert is free and open to the public. Visit monadnockmusic.org.

TOWN HOUSE EXTRAVAGANZA presented by Monadnock Music’s summer festival features a program of Weber and Schubert at Peterborough Town House, 1 Grove St, on Sunday, July 17, 3 p.m. Tickets: $35, Seniors- $25 Students and Under 18- $10. See monadnockmusic.org.

Piano to lift spirits

Sergei Novikov comes to New Hampshire

By Delaney Beaudoin

Having been in the United States for only four months, pianist Sergei Novikov found himself down on his luck and nearly homeless in 1991. Just three months later he would be playing piano for the president of the United States.

Born in Russia, Novikov displayed an affinity for music from an early age. Learning various instruments from the age of 6, he took up piano by age 8. After graduating from the Moscow School of Music at 15, he briefly played in a pop band, performing for stadiums of up to 100,000 people, before eventually emigrating from Russia to the United States. Novikov only briefly struggled to grasp his footing before he was hired to play piano at a restaurant in Kennebunkport, Maine. It was there that he played for former President George H.W. Bush.

“Kennebunkport is where Bush’s family has their summer home. … Bush was president at that time, so he was in town, and that’s where he went, and he came to have dinner,” Novikov said. “He was so impressed with my piano performance that he took the time and actually came to me and shook my hand and told me that I’m a great talent. He was very impressed. Everybody was very impressed that he was impressed with me.”

After finishing his studies at the University of Maine, Novikov began his career doing piano concerts, which he continues to do to this day. As part of his current show, “Piano Concert Like No Other,” Novikov is set to perform Friday, July 15, at 7 p.m. at the Kingswood Art Center in Wolfeboro, on Friday, July 22, at 7 p.m. at the Seifert Performing Arts Center in Salem.

Lasting an hour and 15 minutes, Novikov’s performance is specifically designed to cover an array of music genres, incorporating more than 14 different styles.

“Every piece is different. … Every piece has a unique style, although you can describe it in one word: the whole program is sophisticated. So for people who love Chopin, for people who love Duke Ellington, for people who love even Johann Sebastian Bach, you know, they come to my concerts, and they’re not disappointed,” Novikov said. “On the one hand, it’s entertaining. On the other hand, it is deep enough for people to enjoy it and feel that it’s not just something that came and they forgot about it right away.”

In his 20-year career thus far, Novikov has performed live more than 5,000 times and sold more than one million albums. He has performed in front of countless celebrities and been praised by not one but two U.S. presidents. His dedication to his craft is fueled simply by his desire to make people happy through music.

“Everybody has their troubles, problems, everybody has their thoughts, you know, everybody has something on their mind. The music that I deliver takes the load off the brain, at least for the hour and 15 minutes of my performance, and they feel better, and they tell me about it afterwards,” Novikov said. “I always tell people that it’s a privilege, and I feel that I am privileged to be able to do that. I’m not performing magic and taking people’s problems away. But I make them feel better for a little while, [and] that’s already a great deal.”

In addition to making people happy, Novikov hopes to introduce people to the sector of music that has yet to be touched by commercialization.

“There is plenty of good music of any genre, whatever you like, so my message to people is to stop complaining about music being bad. Just you know, get busy finding good music, because it’s out there,” Novikov said. “I am proud to be in that group. I’m offering something that you don’t find every day anymore. It’s really a unique experience.”

Tickets to Novikov’s Wolfeboro and Salem performances start at $40. Part of the proceeds will be donated to the International Rescue Committee “to help assist Ukraine.” Visit speakingmusic.com.

“Piano Concert Like No Other”
• Where: Kingswood Art Center, 21 McManus Road, Wolfeboro
When: Friday, July 15, at 7 p.m.
Cost: $40 to $45
• Where: Seifert Performing Arts Center, 44 Geremonty Drive, Salem
When: Friday, July 22, at 7 p.m.
Cost: $40 to $45
Visit: speakingmusic.com

Featured photo: Photo courtesy of Sergei Novikov.

Summer of books

Put action, fantasy, science fiction and more on your summer reading list

Need some books to take on vacation or to give you a little getaway on your lunch hour? We asked local book sellers and librarians for their suggestions on what to put on your summer reading list.

Contemporary fiction

The Hospice Singer by Larry Duberstein, published May 2022
The little-known practice of hospice singing brings two unlikely characters together.
Recommended by: Willard and Holly Williams of The Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough. “Full of surprising turns, this is an enjoyable read leavened by Larry’s humorous takes on life.”

Bright Burning Things by Lisa Harding, published December 2021
Sonya, a single mother, struggles to make a good life for her son Tommy while her unrelenting alcohol addiction causes heartbreaking moments of darkness.
Recommended by: Brittany Overton, adult services librarian at Hooksett Library. “Readers are brought into the mind of a young woman whose alcohol addiction is spiraling out of control, providing a perspective on addiction rarely known to the depths described in this book.”

Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt, published May 2022
Tova, still grieving from the loss of her 18-year-old son, Erik, many years ago, and more recently her husband, is getting ready to retire from her night-shift job cleaning the local aquarium, where she has befriended the intelligent and wily giant Pacific octopus, Marcellus.
Recommended by: Maria Schroeter, adult collection development and adult programming librarian at Nesmith Library in Windham. “This heartwarming book, with a bit of mystery on the side, is ultimately about relationships. … This is perfect for anyone looking for an uplifting, but not too sweet, lovely story.”

Still the Night Call by Joshua Senter, December 2021
This story is a debut novel that takes place over 24 hours centering on the life of a Missouri dairy farmer. It dives into the plight of Midwestern farmers as they fight to hold on to their livelihoods.
Recommended by: Susan Schatvet, Director at Seabrook Library. “It’s one of those books where, from the very first page, you’re compelled to go on. It gives you a fantastic perspective of the impact on this group of people. It’s a tragic novel, but it is just so compelling and it takes place over just 24 hours.”

This Time Tomorrow, by Emma Straub, published May 2022
Alice is supposed to be turning 40, but when she wakes up on her birthday somehow back in 1996, it isn’t her 16-year-old body that is the biggest shock, or the possibility of romance with her adolescent crush. It’s the 49-year-old version of her father with whom she is reunited, giving her a new perspective on her own life and his.
Recommended by: Michael Herrmann, owner of Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “It’s a time travel tale reminiscent of Jack Finney’s Time and Again, with just a touch of Narnia.”

Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult, published November 2021
Diana O’Toole’s well-ordered life is sent off course when the Covid-19 pandemic hits during her vacation to the Galapagos, closing borders, landing her in quarantine and giving her time for self-reflection.
Recommended by: Amy Lapointe, library director at Amherst Town Library. “The characters are compelling, making for a page-turner; the time period is relevant; and the Galapagos setting is the perfect backdrop for themes of resilience and evolution.”

What we’re reading:
Tracy Flick Can’t Win By Tom Perrotta (Scribner, 2022)
Perrotta revisits the central character of his 1998 Election in this story that catches up with Tracy, the one-time ambitious high school student with presidential aspirations. Now she is on the cusp of getting picked as principal at the high school where she has long served as assistant principal. She’s a lock, a shoo-in — so naturally, things start to go wrong. It’s a delight to revisit her and see how she and the world have changed (and, sigh, haven’t). The book is a quick fun read, told from multiple points of view.
Amy Diaz


Baking with Dorie: Sweet, Salty & Simple by Dorie Greenspan, with photographs by Mark Weinberg, published October 2021
A creative collection of recipes that includes everything from breakfast pastries to savory treats.
Recommended by: Tammy Gross, library assistant at Goffstown Public Library. “This was a beautiful cookbook, and the cookies I made from it were delicious. I’m looking forward to making the Lemon Meringue Layer Cake next.”


Book of Night by Holly Black, published May 2022
When a former thief who specialized in stealing magical documents is forced back into her old habits, a story of magic, secrets and murder unfolds.
Recommended by: Liz Herold, Assistant Director at North Hampton Public Library. “The main character is definitely someone you root for. She’s one of those people who always makes the wrong choice in life. But she’s trying to turn over a new leaf. It’s very fast-paced with a thread of mystery and suspense in it.”

The Change by Kirsten Miller, published May 2022
Three women who have developed supernatural powers while going through midlife changes band together to solve the murder of a teen girl whom the police have written off as a drug addict.
Recommended by: Carolyn Tremblay, reference librarian at Dover Public Library, and Chris Savukinas, children’s library assistant at Nesmith Library in Windham. “This oddly charismatic trio will win you over in their fight against powerful men. A suspenseful plot, humor and some sharp commentary about sexism combine to create a novel you won’t want to put down,” Tremblay said. “It’s about menopause, superpowers and revenge; if you’re a woman of a certain age, you’ll love it,” Savukinas said.

House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas, published February 2022
In the second installment in the Crescent City series, Bryce and Hunt are ready to settle down together and live a quiet life, but as the rebels continue fighting against the Asteri, staying on the sidelines is no longer an option.
Recommended by: Alexa Moore, circulation and reader services librarian at Amherst Town Library. “[The book] follows a lot of different threads and works to firmly establish the large cast of characters. While I loved the character-building and intrigue this story provided, it succeeded in its main goal of setting the stage for an incredible third book.”

Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao, published September 2021
Concubine-pilot Zetian is out for vengeance for the death of her sister, and to stop the practice of sacrificing girls once and for all.
Recommended by: Alexa Moore, circulation and reader services librarian at Amherst Town Library. “This book grabbed my attention initially because of the gender roles being challenged and other important representations within the story, but kept me reading because of the giant robot (mech) fights.”

Nettle & Bone by T. Kingfisher, published April 2022
Marra, the youngest princess of a very modest kingdom, sets out to rescue her older sisters from an abusive prince.
Recommended by: Dianne Hathaway, director at Goffstown Public Library. “It is well-written and clever and very different from what you should expect of traditional fairy tales. … If you enjoy stories of knights, strong damsels-not-in-distress and magic, then this book is for you.”

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune, published September 2021
The story of Wallace, a curmudgeonly young man who dies without really having lived, and the kind and wise ferryman, who runs a tea shop and holding room for the recently deceased, who helps him cross over.
Recommended by: Maria Schroeter, adult collection development and adult programming librarian at Nesmith Library in Windham. “The story … is filled with hope and caution and made my heart break and soar. T.J. Klune draws you in with wonderful characters, an interesting and extraordinary plot and life lessons for us all.”

When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill, published May 2022
In an alternate version of the world in the 1950s, one quarter of the female population has spontaneously and simultaneously turned into dragons, and despite the chaos that ensues, no one is allowed to talk about it.
Recommended by: Heather Weirich Roy, children’s book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “This book is full of righteous, suppressed rage at the patriarchy in a clever, well-mannered wrapper.”

What we’re reading:
The Priory of the Orange Tree By Samantha Shannon (Bloomsbury, 2019)
Shannon explores what happens when a divided world faces a universal threat: the ancient forces of chaos. The Western Queen, Sabran, must conceive a daughter to continue her family’s thousand-year reign and protect the world. Ead, a Southerner and outsider (and secret practitioner of forbidden magic), must convince the Western court to abate its hostility to the East. Tamé, a dragonrider in the East, needs to find a way to open the borders of her closed-off country. This high-fantasy tome is a must read for lovers of magic, dragons, kings, queens, epic battles, and strong, determined women.
Katelyn Sahagian

Graphic novel

Ballad for Sophie by Filipe Melo and Juan Cavia, published November 2021
An aging piano virtuoso must confront many uncomfortable parts of his past when a young journalist pays him an unexpected visit to conduct an interview.
Recommended by: Christopher Larochelle, patron services assistant at Hooksett Public Library. “This graphic novel will captivate readers who want to investigate the price that might come along with fame.”

Salt Magic by Hope Larson, published October 2021
This middle-grade graphic novel fairy tale follows a girl’s journey to save her family from an evil witch who has put a curse on their well, turning the town’s water supply into saltwater.
Recommended by: Chris Savukinas, children’s library assistant at Nesmith Library in Windham. “Just when I thought I’d read a bit of everything. I liked it. And there’s a twist at the end I didn’t see coming.”

Historical fiction

Horse by Geraldine Brooks, published June 2022
When civil war grips the country, it kicks off a journey between a groom, his horse and a young artist.
Recommended by: Lisa Houde, Assistant Director at Rye Public Library. “Anything this woman writes is gold.”

The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles, published October 2021
In 1950s America, a man recently released from prison heads to California with his brother to start a new life after the death of their father.
Recommended by: Dianne Hathaway, director at Goffstown Public Library, and Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at the Derry Public Library. “This is an unforgettable book by a talented, beautiful writer,” Hathaway said. “A sweeping story with heartfelt characters, and a fast-paced plot … and very engaging and vivid scenes,” DeLangie said.

The Magnolia Palace by Fiona Davis, published January 2022
This novel examines the Frick Museum through the eyes of three women: a young artist’s model in the 1920s and her imperious employer and a young model at a fashion shoot in the Frick circa 1966.
Recommended by: Carolyn Tremblay, reference librarian at Dover Public Library. “A terrific behind-the-scenes look at an iconic art museum. Fiona Davis excels in bringing history alive.”

Miss Eliza’s English Kitchen: A Novel of Victorian Cookery and Friendship by Annabel Abbs, published November 2021
Two very different women in 19th-century London come together to create a cookbook.
Recommended by: Erin Robinson, genealogy and reference librarian at Derry Public Library. “Wonderful characterization, rich prose and close attention to historic cooking make this book a standout.”

Out Front the Following Sea by Leah Angstman, published January 2022
In New England in the late 1600s, 23-year-old Ruth must escape her hometown with no warning and ends up on a ship that takes her to Stonington, Connecticut, where her problems are just beginning.
Recommended by: Virginia Hundley, bookseller at RiverRun Bookstore in Portsmouth. “What a fascinating tale of what women had to do to survive in that era. … I loved this book. It is not on any bestseller list, but I came across it somehow and have now hand-sold many copies.”

Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan, published November 2021
This novella, set in a small town in Ireland in 1985, follows Bill Furlong, who delivers coal in a small Irish town and ruminates about what he uncovers along the way.
Recommended by: Dianne Hathaway, director at Goffstown Public Library. “The writing is lyrical and lovely, and while there is no deep character development, the plot is full of messages and visual pictures of a quaint Irish town at Christmas.”

Still Life by Sarah Winman, published June 2021.
An English soldier meets a middle-aged art historian in Tuscany in 1944, in the midst of bombed-out villages and advancing Allied troops.
Recommended by: Karen Dixon, assistant director at Hopkinton Town Library. “It’s a feel-good story, but in an intelligent, not-saccharine way. And there is the bonus of a parrot who quotes Shakespeare.”

The Sweetness Of Water by Nathan Harris, published June 2021
News of the Emancipation Proclamation has just arrived in a rural Georgia town, and most of the white townspeople are refusing to give freed slaves jobs or food. When two of the former slaves are hired by a local farmer, chaos erupts.
Recommended by: Willard and Holly Williams of The Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough. “This is a powerful reminder of the terrors that remained as the war wound down.”


Cherish Farrah by Bethany C. Morrow, published February 2022
Farrah is a calculating, manipulative and possibly psychopathic young Black girl, who schemes her way into the lives of her Black best friend Cherish’s white, wealthy, adoptive family, and things may be even more insidious than they first appear.
Recommended by: Ryan Clark, marketing manager at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “For the folks looking for a splash of horror in their beach reads, look no further than Cherish Farrah. A brilliant, chilling, unflinching masterpiece of a novel. This is social horror at its finest, and it left me spinning.”

What we’re reading:
The Shape of Darkness by Laura Purcell (Penguin Books, 2021)
In this Victorian gothic tale, silhouette portrait artist Agnes struggles to support herself while recovering from a nervous breakdown and still plagued by the deaths of her lover and her sister. When her clients begin to be murdered after their portrait sittings, Agnes seeks the counsel of a child spirit medium in the hope of finding clues to the killer. Instead she finds that she may be haunted by something much more sinister. Purcell twists all the gothic tropes into her own unique brand of supernatural horror — creepy and deliciously bleak. Here she weaves a story of obsessive loves, secrets, and the dark side of sisterly relationships.
Jennifer Gingras

Mystery and thriller

The House Across the Lake by Riley Sager, published June 2022
A cabin on a lake, a hot cop next door, a former model who might be in danger, a drowned husband, a dubious detective, an urban legend and a whole lot of lies converge in this thriller.
Recommended by: Ryan Clark, marketing manager at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “This book made me gasp out loud on multiple occasions. This is the summer thriller you’ve been waiting for.”

The Midcoast by Adam White, published June 2022
This story follows a tragic family of lobstermen who quickly rise from poverty to wealth, and the dark secrets surrounding them.
Recommended by: Virginia Hundley, bookseller at RiverRun Bookstore in Portsmouth. “Many plots and twists and … a must-read for anyone familiar with the midcoast of Maine.”

Ocean Prey by John Sandford, published April 2021
When the Marshal service and the Minnesota Criminal Investigation Bureau team up to investigate the murder of a Coast Guard team, the result is a gripping adventure to the bottom of the ocean.
Recommended by: Cindy Rivers, Customer Service Librarian at Wiggin Memorial Library.
“It’s just a great fun mystery read. I love the character development, and Sandford also does some great research for his stories.”

Poison for Breakfast by Lemony Snicket, published August 2021
The children’s author, writing as himself, tells the story of an ominous note found under his door, leading him to solve the mystery of his own demise.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “I love everything Lemony Snicket — the witty humor, the macabre plots, the poignant truisms. This newest story does not disappoint. … I feel this story was very appropriate for adults since it deals with accepting your own eventual demise.”

The Sentence by Louise Erdrich, published November 2021
A different kind of ghost story, this book follows a small independent bookstore that is being haunted by the ghost of its most annoying customer.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “It’s … about the power of community, connection, and learning to trust not only others, but ourselves. I’m not sure I have ever felt the growth of a character more than I did with this book.”

What we’re reading:
In Cold Blood By Truman Capote (Random House, 1969)
Capote’s now-classic In Cold Blood is the perfect antidote to the mindless thriller kept stocked in many a summer beach house. Following the true story of a shocking murder, In Cold Blood is the kind of seminal work that is as entertaining as it is important. The first of its kind, In Cold Blood reimagines how we consume true crime and how we view journalism. For those who love a true crime podcast like Serial or devoured Michelle McNamara’s I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, In Cold Blood is as good now as it was then — and it was pretty good then.
Hannah Turtle


52 Ways to Walk: The Surprising Science of Walking for Wellness and Joy, One Week at a Time by Annabel Streets, published February 2022
An introduction to walking, with 52 ideas for beneficial ways to walk, backed up by scientific research.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “I walked away with many new ideas and some great factoids.”

The Boys by Ron Howard, published October 2021
Director Ron Howard’s memoir recounts a life growing up in Hollywood as a child actor, and the incredible steps his father took to protect Ron and his brother from the pitfalls of success.
Recommended by: Anne Powell, Circulation Assistant at Seabrook Library.
“I always like memoirs. Their father managed to keep them safe and keep them from getting corrupted or exploited as children and [let them] have a good experience.”

Chasing Eden: A Book Of Seekers by Howard Mansfield, published October 2021
An account of individuals and groups that made attempts to create an Edenic life here on Earth, from the Shaker Community in Canterbury to an early 20th-century Black doctor in Keene who crossed over and back between races.
Recommended by: Willard and Holly Williams of The Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough.

Deep Water: Murder, Scandal, and Intrigue in a New England Town by Ken Sheldon, published June 2022
In August 1918, William Dean was murdered in Jaffrey, New Hampshire, his body dumped in a cistern. The case remains unsolved, but Ken Sheldon recounts the mystery that has surrounded the case ever since.
Recommended by: Willard and Holly Williams of The Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough. “The book reads like a thriller.”

Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law by Mary Roach, published September 2021
Mary Roach travels the world to investigate human-wildlife conflicts, from the deadly to the mischievous.
Recommended by: John LeDonne, adult book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “As in all her books, Roach combines humor and science to create an entertaining and enlightening read.”

The Hawk’s Way: Encounters With Fierce Beauty by Sy Montgomery, May 2022
Montgomery showcases many fascinating aspects of hawk life, revealing how these amazing animals fit into nature’s “bigger picture.”
Recommended by: Christopher Larochelle, patron services assistant at Hooksett Public Library. “A quick and absorbing nonfiction read, featuring the backdrop of a New Hampshire farm.”

Patient Zero: A Curious History of the World’s Worst Diseases by Lydia Kang, published November 2021
A look at the interesting histories of the diseases that have plagued humans throughout time.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “You would think it would be macabre, yet it is fascinating and surprisingly upbeat.”

Ride of Her Life: The True Story of a Woman, Her Horse, and Their Last-Chance Journey Across America by Elizabeth Letts, published June 2021
The remarkable story of a woman from Maine in the 1950s who decides to set off across the country to see California, on her horse.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “Her journey seems impossible. Told in a very engaging style, and incredibly researched, I couldn’t put the book down.”

River Man: An American Odyssey by Ben McGrath, published April 2022
Writer Ben McGrath met Dick Conant canoeing the Hudson River, and discovered Contant had crossed the country with his canoe. They exchanged numbers, so when Conant’s canoe was found empty, McGrath got the call from investigators. As he unraveled the mystery of this man’s disappearance, McGrath began to discover the lives that Conant had touched over the years.
Recommended by: Andy Richmond, Director at Rye Public Library. “It was really interesting the way this guy touched people’s memories and lives, even with these chance meetings. This was his avenue for adventure, but also his lifestyle. It’s a fascinating story.”

The Storyteller: Tales of Life and Music by Dave Grohl, published October 2021
The Grammy-winning rock star recounts stories from his life and career.
Recommended by: Virginia Hundley, bookseller at RiverRun Bookstore in Portsmouth. “Well-written, with a unique and inspiring description of his experiences throughout his career. Honest, and a hard book to put down.”

What we’re reading:
Disfigured: On Fairy Tales, Disability, and Making Space By Amanda Leduc (2020, Coach House Books)
Leduc unpacks the depiction of disabilities in fairy tales from the Brothers Grimm to Disney, examining how disabilities are used as a curse to be lifted or to signal a villainous character. She demonstrates how who gets the ‘happily ever after’ in fairy tales shapes perceptions of what those with disabilities deserve or can hope for, especially when it’s internalized by those with disabilities. Leduc leaves us with suggestions about how we can write new stories with more complex princesses and superheroes. Leduc’s history of European fairy tales, and how she and others in the disabled community relate to them, is engaging without feeling preachy.
Tristan Collins

Picture books

The Blur by Minh Le, published March 2022
One moment she’s taking her first steps and the next she’s ready to take on the world; the years fly by in this little superhero’s origin story.
Recommended by: Heather Weirich Roy, children’s book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “Perfect for parents seeing their babies growing quickly or new graduates.”

I’m Not Missing by Kashelle Gourley, published May 2022
Tired of having to follow his human’s rules and be on good behavior, a pup runs away, but doesn’t get far when he notices how much his human misses him.
Recommended by: Heather Weirich Roy, children’s book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord.

Viking In Love by Doug Cenko, published December 2021
A tale of love, the high seas, Viking ingenuity and kittens.
Recommended by: Chelsea Paige, digital literacy librarian at Nesmith Library in Windham. “Vikings? Kittens? Count me in. I love when a picture book combines multiple layers and themes and makes it look elegantly easy. This was a delightful read for an adult, without losing its appeal for kids.”


Time is a Mother by Ocean Vuong, published April 2022
The poet reimagines the past as if he is living it once again in the present time.
Recommended by: Virginia Hundley, bookseller at RiverRun Bookstore in Portsmouth. “This collection is intimate yet maintains a level of distance. His poetry and verse is as wonderful as ever.”


Book Lovers by Emily Henry, published May 2022
This romance novel follows Nora, a cutthroat literary agent, and Charlie, a famously difficult book editor, in an enemies-to-friends-to-lovers story.
Recommended by: Ryan Clark, marketing manager at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “At times laugh-out-loud funny, and at other times heart-achingly tender. … A delightful twist on the Hallmark Movie trope.”

Love, Hate & Clickbait by Liz Bowery, published April 2022
Tom Morgan and Clay Parker are two political consultants working on a California campaign that faces a setback when their candidate is accused of being homophobic. In order to save their image and secure the liberal vote, Parker and Morgan fake a dating life that turns into a little something more.
Recommended by: Michelle Sprauge, Adult Services Librarian at Seabrook Library.
“There’s a lot of steam and the burgeoning relationship between the two of them propels the story to the end. You really want to see them get their happy ending.”

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood, published September 2021
Olive Smith, a Ph.D. student, accidentally lands herself in a fake relationship with a grumpy professor to prove a point to her best friend.
Recommended by: Alexa Moore, circulation and reader services librarian at Amherst Town Library. “The fake dating trope can make romances a little predictable, but this story was able to make it relatable [and] funny. … I found it to be an accurate look at balancing graduate school with a relationship, with a little cheesiness mixed in.”

Talk Bookish to Me by Kate Bromley, published May 2021
Between being a bridesmaid for her best friend’s upcoming wedding and trying to finish her next book by the deadline, romance author Kara Sullivan has a lot going on. Things only get more complicated when her estranged first love also happens to be in the wedding party.
Recommended by: Amy Lapointe, library director at Amherst Town Library. “The story within a story will appeal to romance readers and book lovers, and the witty dialogue makes this a perfect beach read.”

Science fiction

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan, published April 2022
A tech entrepreneur looks at the long-term consequences of a technology he developed years earlier that allows people to download, access and share their memories.
Recommended by: Michael Herrmann, owner of Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “An exploration of character and authenticity that will have you up late rereading and obsessing over dozens of brilliantly written passages.”

How High We Go In the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu, published January 2022
In a post-apocalyptic world plagued by a deadly virus, humans fight to maintain their humanity and take hope wherever they can find it.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “For anyone who likes their post-apocalyptic books to have empathy, imagination and hope. Nagamatsu is an exceptional writer who knows how to pull at the heartstrings as he is weaving an incredible tale.”

A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers, published July 2021
In a future where robots have become sentient and live independently from humans, a robot and a monk embark on a journey to discover what humans need for a better future.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “A unique speculative fiction story — very positive, very inclusive, very environmentally minded. I loved living in this world and can’t wait for the next book in the series, which will be released in July 2022.”

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel, published April 2022
A mind-bending tale of time travel and characters who share a connection that transcends time and space.
Recommended by: Jessica DeLangie, head of technical services at Derry Public Library. “There are many elements and themes that could be pulled out and discussed, but it can also stand completely on its own as just a fun read.”

The Temps by Andrew DeYoung, published March 2022
Trapped in their airtight office complex after a worldwide disaster strikes outside, a group of temps must work together to survive and discover the truth about what happened.
Recommended by: Tammy Gross, library assistant at Goffstown Public Library. “The author really brought to life the young characters and each of their personalities. It’s been recently announced online that the novel will be adapted for TV, and I’m looking forward to that, too.”


Family of Liars by E. Lockheart, published May 2022
This prequel to Lockheart’s 2014 young adult novel We Were Liars dives deeper into the secrets and lies of the Sinclairs, a wealthy New England family that will do whatever it takes to keep up appearances.
Recommended by: Heather Weirich Roy, children’s book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “A great summer mystery. When you think you’ve revealed what they’ve been hiding, you only uncover more mysteries hidden away.”

Ogress and the Orphans by Kelly Barnhill, published March 2022
In this middle-grade novel, a group of orphans set out to defend a benevolent ogress who becomes the prime suspect in the case of a missing child when the mayor fuels stereotypes and fears held by the townspeople about ogres.
Recommended by: Heather Weirich Roy, children’s book buyer at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. “A beautiful parable about doing good where you can and creating a loving community instead of isolating out of fear or anger.”

Featured photo: Courtesy photo.

This Week 22/06/30

Big Events June 30, 2022 and beyond

Thursday, June 30

Bedford’s Family Concerts in the Park starts today at 6 p.m. at the Bedford Village Park Gazebo (off Bell Hill Road) with a performance by the Manchester Community Music School. The concert series continues with performances on Wednesdays and will run until Aug. 10. On Wednesday, July 6, catch Sixties Invasion (pictured, playing the music of the 1960s). The music will range from New Orleans jazz to rock, doo-wop, country, folk and other genres. Concerts are free to attend and bringing a lawn chairs or blankets (and a picnic dinner) is encouraged. bedfordnh.myrec.com.

Friday, July 1

The New Hampshire Boat Museum (399 Center St., Wolfeboro, nhbm.org, 569-4554) will be giving a Free Admission Day today because it will be closed for the Fourth of July. The current exhibits are “Letting Off Steam: Escaping to New Hampshire during the Golden Age of Steam” and “Who’s in the Boat? A Look at the History of the Sport of Rowing.”

Friday, July 1

Communities across the Granite State are doing Readings of Frederick Douglass’s Essay “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” The readings will all be taking place at noon today at Congregational Church of Amherst; Eagle Square in Concord; Dover Public LIbrary; Exeter Town Hall; Hopkinton Town Hall; Manchester City Hall Plaza; Nashua Library Gardens; Teixeira Park (Union Street, Peterborough); Strawbery Banke (Portsmouth); Rochester Performance & Art Center, Colonel Paul Wentworth House (Rochester), and Warner Town Hall. See blackheritagetrailnh.org/frederick-douglass-statewide-readings or call 570-8469.

Tuesday, July 5

Dover Public Library is giving Granite Staters a way to track down their heritage with a Genealogy Class beginning today at 6:30 p.m. The library welcomes everyone, experienced genealogists or newcomers, from across the state for free classes. Contact Anne Nelson at a.nelson@dover.nh.gov or call the library at 516-6050 for more information.

Wednesday, July 6

The Courtyard by Marriott (70 Constitution Ave.in Concord) is taking advantage of its patio with a nine-week lineup of live Music on the Patio, starting on July 6 with April Cushman. The music will play from 5 to 7 p.m. The series is free for anyone to enjoy. Find more live music on area decks in the Music This Week listing, which starts on page 34.

Thursday, July 7

Van Otis Chocolates is holding a Chocolate Happy Hour at its Manchester location (341 Elm St., vanotis.com, 627-1611) for chocoholics age 21 and older. Participants will get a tour of the chocolate factory and make their own special chocolate bark. Guests are invited to bring a bottle of wine to enjoy while they whip up their chocolate creations. Tickets are $45 per person and can be purchased on Eventbrite at eventbrite.com/o/van-otis-chocolates-15034673134.

Save the Date! Friday, July 15
Nashua’s Parks and Recreation department is starting Pics in the Park with a showing of Jurassic Park (PG-13, 1993) at dusk at Greeley Park (100 Concord St.). The movie will be shown on a screen in front of the bandshell and is free to attend.

Featured photo. 60s Invasion. Courtesy photo.

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