For the Love of Reading

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By Liz Premo Atlantic News Staff Writer

Atlantic News, Friday, October 19, 2007

[The following article is courtesy of Atlantic News]

WELCOME! -- Kirsten Corbett invites book lovers to stop by the Children's Room at the Lane Memorial Library.
[Atlantic News Photo by Liz Premo]

HAMPTON -- There have been some pretty big life changes lately for Kirsten (Rundquist) Corbett.

On one hand, she got married just over a month ago at the centuries-old Borthwick Castle in North Middleton, Midlothian, Scotland, southeast of Edinburgh.

"It's one of the more authentic castles," she says of the historic site where her romantic nuptials took place.

On the other hand, the 30-year-old Raymond resident was recently hired to the Lane Memorial Library staff as the new Young Adult Librarian, filling the vacancy left by her NYC-bound predecessor, Cheryl French.

So how is Corbett adapting to her new work surroundings in the Lane Library's Children's Room?

"I'm really enjoying it," she says with a smile. "I think we've got a great community."

Originally from Utah, Corbett loved reading and libraries almost from the start, even winning an "I Love to Read" trophy in second grade for reading the most out of all her fellow students. Her favorite books while growing up were Nancy Drew mysteries and Danny Dunn adventures.

While in high school, Corbett had her heart set on being an English teacher, because "she knew that she could help her students love the books they read in school." Once in college, however, she determined that "working with teens in a public library setting would be more interesting than teaching."

She went on to earn her BA in English Literature from the University of New Hampshire and managed the young adult services department of the Manchester City Library. She also holds a Masters degree in Library Science, which she earned at the University of Rhode Island.

Now settling comfortably in her new position at the Lane Library, Corbett is in the process of scheduling the first Teen Advisory Board meeting with the students who were involved with it under French's guidance.

"They come in here and ask, 'Are we going to do it again?'" says Corbett, referring to the various programs about which the kids inquire. "I want to work out a program schedule. I'll pump them for information to find out what they liked before and what they'd like to change."

At least two favorite programs are fairly certain to return. "We'll probably do Reading Buddies, and Readers' Theatre," she says.

Through the course of her work day, Corbett has been getting to know her colleagues, among them Children's Librarian Paulina Shadowens and Library Assistant Joanne Mulready.

"I like them," she says. "They're all really friendly and helpful, which is lovely.

Kirsten's mission is "to imbue teens with her love of books and reading, as well as to provide a fun and safe environment for them." She welcomes input from her patrons, and can be found in the Children's Room. Stop by the library to say "hello" to Kirsten Corbett, or call her at (603) 926-4729.

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