Congratulations to the 2015 NH LAL Semi-finalists!

Abigail Magnuszewski, Brookline
Abigail Davis, Brookline
Adam Razzaboni, Brookline
Alyssa Rogers, Somersworth
Anna Sourdif, Lee
Anna Wolke, Plainfield
Caitlin MacVarish, Hollis
Christopher Hopp, North Haverhill
Christina Rogers, Moultonborough
Dana Ulrich, Hollis
Darby Simmons, Atkinson
Delia Carstens, Whitefield
Eliza Rae Thayer, Haverhill
Emily A. Simons, Dover
Emmy Goyette, Durham
Hannah Falcone, Plainfield
Helene Kenney, Exeter
Isaah Gray, Somersworth
Isabel Povey, Hampstead
Jack Cameron, Hampstead
Jahnavi Palarapu, Nashua
Jarod Denis, Pembroke
Joonho Jo, Exeter
Jordan Lavery, East Hampstead
Joseph Solari, Milford
Kaitlyn Ferdinand, Brookline
Katherine Lavoie, East Hampstead
Kaycee Travis, Plainfield
Kayla Sickler, Milford
Keelin Cripps, Pembroke
Kerstin Nielsen, Lee
Laura Gamelin, Pembroke
Lily Nowe, Pembroke
Lily Roberge, Milford
Lucy Barlow, Hampstead
Luke Anderson, Rollinsford
Madison Opalinski, Franconia
Marian Zens, Lyme
Meagan Stagner, Pembroke
Meghan Dirksmeier, Madbury
Meghan Wood, Milford
Molly Hyde, Durham
Molly Nero, Milford
Montgomery LeBlanc, East Hampstead
Natalie VanderNoot, Lebanon
Reagan Berry, Hollis
Riley McGrath, Atkinson
Rohit Kantipudi, Madbury
Ryan McMahon, East Hampstead
Samuel Koch, Hollis
Sasha Beran-Hughes, Milford
Shira Hoffer, Hanover
Shriya Mareedu, Nashua
Sydney Buffett, Bedford
Sydney Malachi, Suncook
Sydney Speir, Brookline
Tylor Pappalardo, East Hampstead
William Shea, Hampstead
Zachary Cassidy, Greenville
Zachary Girouard, Milford
Please note that in addition to the students listed here, there were 7 more students honored as semi-finalists who had not given us permission to announce their names as of today. This year sixty-seven semi-finalist letters were selected out of 776 letters received from New Hampshire students. 
New Hampshire's winning letters will be selected from these semi-finalist letters and announced at the end of April. The Center for the Book at the New Hampshire State Library will award $100 to each first place winner. State winners will advance to the national Letters About Literature competition. 


Book of the Week #14

A Sticky Situation by Jessie Crockett (Berkley Prime Crime, 2015)

"The author of Maple Mayhem returns to Sugar Grove, New Hampshire, where the Greene family—including Dani’s irksome Aunt Hazel—are busy preparing for the annual Maple Festival. But nothing kills the festive spirit like murder…
Aunt Hazel isn’t exactly sweet, but she’s not the only one putting syrup maker Dani in a sour mood. Her family is trying to help renovate the town’s Opera House, but their contractor Russ Collins seems to specialize in finely crafted excuses. And his latest one is killer.
In the Opera House basement, Russ uncovers the remains of Spooner Duffy, a charming drifter thought to have skipped town decades ago with a hefty sum of the town’s money. Tapping into some unpleasant memories, Spooner’s bones also threaten to reveal a murderer’s secret, and now it’s up to Dani to catch a killer before the town is stuck with a deadly reputation." --Publisher's blurb

On Saturday, April 11, 2015 author Jessie Crockett will be signing this latest novel at The Country Bookseller.


Book of the Week #13

Sing and Other Stories by Dan Szczesny (NH: Hobblebush Books, 2015

"The stories in Sing catch you off guard again and again—Dan Szczesny is a virtuoso narrative shapeshifter, wily and daring. To paraphrase one of his own characters, he is at once astronaut, poet, theologian, philosopher, chemical engineer, and more. Here are stories that seem to cascade like gentle rain in one instant, then come swinging at the gut in the next. They are unstinting in their lyrical scrutiny of human frailty and longing."
Tim Horvath, author of Understories

On Thursday, April 2, 2015 Gibson's Bookstore is hosting a book release party for Sing. Festivities begin a 7pm.


Schools with LAL Semi-finalists

Letters About Literature received 776 letters from New Hampshire students for the 2015 competition. Of these, 68 letters have been selected as semi-finalists across the three competition levels. There were a few students who entered as individuals (not indicating a school) whose letters were selected as semi-finalists. The rest of the semi-finalists are students at these schools:

Atkinson Academy - Atkinson
Captain Samuel Douglass Academy - Brookline
Crossroads Academy - Lyme
Gilford High School - Gilford
Hampstead Middle School - Hampstead
Haverhill Cooperative Middle School - North Haverhill
Heron Pond Elementary School - Milford
Hollis Brookline Middle School - Hollis
Infant Jesus School - Nashua
Memorial School - Bedford
Milford Middle School - Milford
Moultonborough Central School - Moultonborough
Oyster River Middle School - Durham
Plainfield Elementary School - Meriden
Profile School - Bethlehem
Somersworth High School - Somersworth
St. Thomas Aquinas HS - Dover
Three Rivers School – Pembroke

Next week each student whose letter was selected as a semi-finalist will be receiving a packet notifying them of their selection. Most of the packets are being sent care of teachers whose names were on the entry coupons. Students who entered as individuals will get their packets at home.  
The packets include a release form that each student needs to have signed and returned before we can announce their names. As soon as the releases are returned to us we will post the list of semi-finalists.