This column traditionally emphasizes upcoming events, activities, speakers, authors and new titles at the Cannon Beach Library, as it did in the previous Cannon Beach Gazette.

Announcing cancelled or postponed events, activities, speakers and tantalizing books added to the library’s collection, as is the case today, seems a perverse use of this regular column in our village’s journal.

The board of directors of the Cannon Beach Library met March 16 and voted unanimously to close the library until April 1, when the board will reevaluate the safety and timing of reopening. A statement the board posted on the library webpage explained its decision:

“This decision was not made lightly. We are taking the necessary precautions for the safety of our patrons, our volunteers, and our staff. Please stay safe and healthy and do your part to ‘flatten the curve.’”

In the posted statement, the library board asked patrons not to return checked-out library materials at this time and assured its patrons that fines will not be assessed.

The board also encouraged patrons to use library e-book services during this coronavirus closure. “You will find a link on our website, On the bottom of the page under ‘suggested links,’ click on ‘library to go.’ Or, download the overdrive app. Your patron number is your log-in and also your password.”

Patrons without an account may use e-book services free of charge. Use 2688 to log in and 2688 as your password, or 2689 to log in and 2689 as the password.

Patrons are asked to check out only one e-book at a time, so others also may benefit from this online service.

Several scheduled events have been cancelled or postponed as a result of the coronavirus.

Cannon Beach Reads, scheduled to discuss Brian Doyle’s “Martin Marten,” did not meet March 18 as scheduled and announced in this column two weeks ago.

If the status of the current plague improves and the library reopens in time, the reading group intends to maintain its published schedule, with Wanda Meyer-Price leading a discussion of Geraldine Brooks’ novel “People of the Book” at the library, April 15 from 7-8:30 p.m.

The discussion of “Martin Marten” will wait until January 2021.

Those invited to the Cannon Beach Library’s Member and Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon on April 1 should have received a notice that the luncheon has been postponed. Members and volunteers should watch their snail mail for a token of the library’s appreciation, and details about a new time and place for the luncheon.

The amazing Brett Willyard was scheduled to present “There’s Magic at the Library” on March 28. Willyard’s magic show, however, also has been cancelled in compliance with our governor’s order banning gatherings larger than 25 people.

Finally, so readers understand just how much the current plague of coronavirus interferes with the need for ink on pulp, let me tease a few books that arrived this past month (marked with green dots) to expand the library’s collection.

Seven fiction titles by Serena Burdick, Abi Dosé, Serena Burdick, Mark Greaney, S.M. Hulse, Simone St. James, Jess Kidd and Andrew MacDonald will be available as soon as the plague departs, Pharma develops a vaccine, or a treatment emerges.

Eight new mysteries wait to engage readers. They include those by Rhys Bowen, Robert Dugoni, Katrine Engberg, Jessica Fellows, Elly Griffiths, Graham Moore, Douglas Preston and Randy Wayne White.

Six new non-fiction titles include “The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory” by Andrew Bacevich; “Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin” by Fiona Hill; “The Bomb: Presidents, Generals and the Secret History of Nuclear War” by Fred Kaplan; “Arguing with Zombies: Economics, Politics and the Fight for a Better Future” by Paul Krugman; “Why We’re Polarized” by Ezra Klein; and “The Splendid and the Vile” by Erik Larson.

If readers begin twitching, they should think twice before concluding that they touched or inhaled coronavirus. Chances are good they’re experiencing biblio-withdrawal from closed libraries and bookstores. And this cheap columnist has found a decent, inexpensive and charitable cure.

Consider Better World Books. No need to leave the safety of home. Internet access and a credit card captures millions of used books (mostly with markings indicating they were purged from library shelves). A great selection, ridiculously cheap prices, free delivery a few days after placing an order, and BWB shares profits with literacy programs around the world.

Such a deal should cure the twitching and find readers donating a stack, shelf or box of used books to the Cannon Beach Library for the next July 4th book sale.


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