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  • UPDATE – Provincial announcement regarding public libraries and pickups


    We greatly appreciate the Province’s announcement that as part of the first phase of reopening libraries can begin to offer pick-up or delivery of materials. 

    There is a lot of work to do be able to offer these services while ensuring the safety of our employees and our customers. Our plan to resume our physical services needs to account for physical distancing requirements, provision of personal protective equipment, enhanced sanitary controls, and new protocols for employees and customers. We are working on offering holds pick-ups as soon as we can safely do so.  

    We will be communicating all new developments in our service offering to you on all our platforms, as soon as we have updates. 

    Thank you for your patience as we move through this rapidly evolving situation. 


    OPL branches, Bookmobile stops and Homebound delivery services are closed until June 30, 2020. The closure is in response to advice from Ottawa Public Health (OPH) with regards to COVID-19 (coronavirus) for the health and safety of our community. We will continue to monitor the situation and reassess as the situation evolves. Currently, please note:  

    • Due dates for all currently checked out materials have been extended and late fees suspended.
    • Book drops are not available since branches are closed. Hold on to OPL items and return them when branches reopen. 
    • Holds are suspended, and pick up expiry dates extended. This includes interlibrary loans (ILL).
    • Meeting room rentals are cancelled, and fees are being refunded; and
    • Computer bookings, programs, events and outreach activities are cancelled.
    • Expired cards, or those about to expire, have been extended. 

    You can use the Library online:

    We thank you for your patience and support, and we look forward to seeing you online and in person again soon.

Meet Canadian author Helen Humphreys


Helen Humphreys is the award-winning author of numerous works of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, including the novel Coventry, a Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year, and the memoir Nocturne, nominated for the Trillium Book Award . Her novel The Evening Chorus was nominated for the Governor General’s Award in 2015.    

 Humphrey’s latest book, The Ghost Orchard, explores the history of the apple in North America.  Inspired by the discovery of a rare and delicious apple in an abandoned orchard near her home, the author delved into the history of the fruit.  An engaging storyteller, Humphreys brings to light diverse aspects of the apple’s history, from how the fruit first came across the Atlantic Ocean to the cataloguing of over 17,000 varieties by the U.S. Department of Pomology, to little-known stories of poets, artists, and thinkers who were inspired by this humble fruit.

The Ghost Orchard, however, is more than a history, as Humphreys writes about undertaking the research while one of her closest friends was suffering from a terminal illness.  With her signature lyrical prose, Humphreys weaves insights about illness and friendship into this fascinating history, resulting in a book both personal and universal.

Don’t miss the opportunity to meet Helen Humphreys at the Beaverbrook Branch on Monday, December 11, at 2 p.m.  Helen will introduce The Ghost Orchard, followed by a question-and-answer session.  Register online: Author visit - Helen Humphreys, or by phone at 613-580-2940.

Books by Helen Humphreys by RH_library

Titles in English by acclaimed Canadian author Helen Humphreys.