Jenny Walsh: Purveyor of Unlikely Treasures

Jenny Walsh

It’s kind of a coincidence that I was asked to tell my story at this particular moment in time, because as a newly minted empty-nester, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about things–the past, the future, roles, dreams, goals, legacy (basically, the whole enchilada). That said, I’ll spare you the tortuous-introspection parts and keep it to a few (hopefully interesting) tidbits about my life.

I was born in Washington, D.C. and grew up, the second of three sisters, in an old house just across the District line in Maryland. My parents were collectors of many things — antiques and books, primarily — and enthusiasts of many more. My father, a sometime potter and consummate DIY-er, worked for the Smithsonian Institution at the Freer Gallery of Art, which housed the Asian collections. My mother was an ardent reader of mysteries whose anglophile tendencies meant that there were always books by the likes of Dorothy Sayers, Josephine Tey and Georgette Heyer lying about. A favorite piece of family lore recounts the time that Dad chauffeured Agatha Christie and her archaeologist husband from the airport to the Freer for a private tour of the museum’s Persian antiquities. Mom treasured the personally inscribed copy of Curtain she received on that day.

We were lucky to have family friends who lived on a farm in south central Pennsylvania, and some of the best days of my childhood were spent trekking through the fields among the cows and horses and conducting amateur archaeological digs among the ruins of an old stone house on the property.

I studied English literature at Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania (not far from my beloved farm) and fell in with a bunch of history majors whose favorite pastime was walking the battlefields at all hours of the day and night in search of respite, relaxation, and, occasionally, good-natured mischief. I highly recommend living adjacent to a national park, if you can manage it.

After graduation, I worked for a legal services firm in D.C. for a few years before pulling up stakes and moving to New York to join friends from college. I was a copy and features editor for a weekly trade publication for a while, then got married and decided to completely change things up by simultaneously enrolling in library school and taking a role at my husband Kendall’s start-up software company.

Just about ten years, one recession, and four kids later, we found ourselves pursuing a new job opportunity for Kendall in greater Cincinnati. We built a home in Walton, and I focused mainly on getting the children fed and where they needed to be for the next few years.I started working at BCPL in 2011, when our youngest entered middle school. I was a page at the Main Library for five weeks before moving to the book sale room (now the Book Cellar), where I’ve been ever since and never intend to leave. In June of this year, coinciding nicely with my youngest’s graduation from high school, I became a full-time employee when interlibrary loan duties were added to my job description. Thus, I have two official titles: Circulation Assistant – Book Sale Room and Collection Development/ILL Assistant.

What I love most about my job is filling the often very specific needs of patrons and customers while at the same time extending and expanding the life and purpose of the library’s collection. I call myself the Purveyor of Unlikely Treasures.  Another plus is getting to live out the fantasy of running a little used book store in a friendly, helpful, generous, tight-knit community–which is basically what I consider Boone County Public Library to be.

With all four kids out of the house, I talk to our long-suffering cat, Charlie, way too much, but I’ve also started gearing up to act on some of the armchair plans and dreams of the past couple decades: gardening more, traveling more, reading more, restoring an Irish cottage…

Just about anyone who knows me is aware of two obvious passions: Music (especially Bruce Springsteen) and Ireland. I have been to almost 50 Bruce shows in the past 40 years and visited Ireland twice; I fully expect that both of those numbers will go up in the not-too-distant future.

Local Author Book Fair

It’s nearing the end of October. After Halloween, you know what’s coming up next in every retail store and every radio station…the holidays are coming. One of the biggest challenges for many people is the gift situation. We live in a world where we can get basically anything we want whenever we want it. What do you get the person that has everything? How about a book written by a local author? Boone County Public Library, 1786 Burlington Pike in Burlington, will hold a Local Author Book Fair on Saturday, November 9 from 1:30-3 p.m. featuring over 40 different local authors! Genres include mystery, history, children’s literature, thrillers, romance, and more! This unique treat for yourself or a loved one is a perfect way to take a little stress out of the holiday season, meet, and support local writers in the process!

The authors and titles featured at this event are listed below. For more detailed information about the authors and their work, please click here:

  • Angel Musk
    Hey Skedaddle!
  • Angie Grigaliunas
    Sowing; Quelling
  • Barry M. Long
    Swimming in the Ocean: 52 Devotions on Plunging into God’s Abundant Life
  • Bob Webster
    A Brief History of Northern Kentucky; Beverly Hills Supper Club: The Untold Story Behind Kentucky’s Worst Tragedy; Northern Kentucky Fires: A Summary of the Most Memorable Fires of the Region; The Balcony is Closed: A History of Northern Kentucky’s Long-Forgotten Neighborhood Movie Theaters
  • Carly Jordynn
    Forest of Mist series; Sasha Bishop series
  • Chad McClendon
    Natalsa of the Brim
  • Charles Little Jr
    Dead or Alive: The Reaper’s Redemption; Sheriff Carter Link: Vanished
  • Cindy Lou Wehrle
    The Otter & The Whale
  • Colleen O’Connell
    Pirate’s Prey; Untamed Hearts
  • Connie Lynn Howard
    The Otter & The Whale
  • Dale Due
    You Are A Kentucky Wildcat, Wildcats Win Again, You Are A Louisville Cardinal
  • Darryl A. Jouett
    Devil in the Details; Devil May Care
  • David W. Hickey
    The Epic Adventures of Little Red Dog: A heartwarming tale about a rescue dog’s journey to find his forever home!
  • Denise Denton Thiery
    Random Female Syndromes…funny fixes for all the things you thought were wrong with you; Laugh Out Loud…40 Women Humorists Celebrate Then and Now…Before We forget
  • K. McCoy
    Surviving McCoy; When Stars Align
  • Elle Mott
    Out of Chaos: A Memoir
  • H.R. Hutzel
    Anointed: BethEl Book One; The Story of Life
  • J.T. Cooper
  • Brooks Lane
    Emmaline Halloween; Bite Me Bobbi; Unbitten; Love Bites; The Higher the Hair; What’s That Smell: A Skunk’s Tale; The Quarter: A Skunk’s Tale; Hot Southern Mess: Vegan Vittles Cookbook
  • James Ott
    The Greatest Brush: Love, Tragedy and Redemption of Artist Frank Duveneck
  • Jamie Kaba
    The Eggtraordinary Eggventures of Eggville: The King’s Dinner Guests
  • Jana Sullivan
    Bella and Braxton; Taking Wifey to the Grave
  • Janet Haney
    Hello Nobody; Standing at the Door Alone; What to Do When Everything Changes; Write Your Way Through Change, A 21-Day Devotional Journal for Grief and Major Life Transition
  • Jennifer Brasington-Crowley
    Lyndsay and Lainey Lion books; Birdsong
  • Jim White
    Wine in the Sand; Lightning Strikes
  • Joan Hyams Schmitz
    Carried By a Feather
  • Jocelyn Short
    Pets Will Travel
  • Joe Tallarigo
    Life Goes On; Keep The Music Playing; Forever in my Heart
  • John A. Bercaw
    A Pink Mist; The Mighty Jungle; Juliet and Her Romeo
  • Karisa Moore
    Broken Butterflies: Emerging Through Grief, A Suicide Survivor’s Poetic Journal
  • Karla Harney Thompson
    The Messy Situation; Mari-Gold’s Garden Tea
  • Kimberly Rose-Ulreich
    Red Bird Sightings (And Other Spirit Guides to Liberation in the Mountains of West by God Virginia)
  • Lawrence Rock
    The Tooth and the Tail; Hidden Army
  • Liz Ashlee
    Step Toward You; Once Upon a Summer
  • Megan Fricke
    Spellbound; God Willing; The Creek Don’t Rise
  • Mike Evans & Jessica McGinnis
    Pathways; Alex; Hard Roads; With All My Love; The Girl Of Many Names.
  • Nathan Singer
    In the Light of You; Transorbital; The Song in the Squall; Blackchurch Furnace
  • Paige Downie
    Clouds/Sun; Daisy; Daydreams; Kites; Rain; Sun; Clouds; Clocks
  • Reid Kerr
    I Hate It Here: A Love Story; The Great Texas Trailer Park Escape
  • Rick L. Phillips
    The Stranger in the Shadows; Dinky the Elf; The Door Into Murder; Project: Hero
  • Robert Schrage
    Legendary Locals of Covington; Carl Kiger: the Man Beyond the Murder; Lost Northern KY; Along the Ohio River: From Cincinnati to Louisville; Boone County: Then and Now; Eyewitness to History: A Personal Journal
  • Rock Neelly
    River of Tears; Purple Heart Detective Agency; Prince of the Border; Babylon Tears
  • Tracy N. Stokes, M.Ed.
    More Than a Single Story
  • Troy Pendleton
    Dead or Alive: The Reaper’s Redemption; Sheriff Carter Link: Vanished; Agent 12: Awakening; The Eggtraordinary Eggventures of Eggville: The King’s Dinner Guests