2005_11_ARTSWALKER.jpgThere's nothing like a library to awaken our love of reading. Tomorrow night (11/30), our beautiful Main Branch of the New York Public Library (Fifth Avenue at 42nd Street) is hosting a conversation between novelist Alice Walker and Times critic Margo Jefferson. The panel costs $15 and starts at 7:30.

And now that Thanksgiving is over, well, it's Christmas. And Gothamist would be remiss if we didn't point you in the direction of all things Charles Dickens this season, starting with a dramatized reading of the classic Christmas Carol at the Mid-Manhattan Public Library on Thursday, December 1st, at 6:30 PM. Unlike the Alice Walker panel at the Main Library, event is free. Like the Christmas spirit.

Down in the village on December 1st, the Village Community School Auditorium (272 W. 10th St., nr. Greenwich St.) is hosting “The Writers Studio Reading Series”, where Amy Hempel, Kate Walbert, and James Lasdun read from their books The Dog of the Marriage, Our Kind, and Seven Lies, all new work from the authors. Admission is $5.

This weekend, December 3 and 4, is a great time to stock up on some new books for all those delightful hours you'll spend on planes and trains and buses this season. The always wonderful Used Books Cafe at Housing Works (126 Crosby St., open from 12PM-9PM on Saturday and 12PM-7PM on Sunday) is holding a 30% off sale sale! Get 30% all books that have already been reduced. Plus, you can relax in the cozy reading room, and all the proceeds of the Cafe go to Housing Works, which provides services and shelter for New Yorkers living with HIV. Good bookstore, good cause.

Another Library event (forgive us, we love our NYPL) that might interest the bookworm in you and also the movie buff: Lost in La Mancha is a documentary about Terry Gilliam's attempts to turn the classic Cervantes tale, Don Quixote, into a movie. The documentary is being screened at - you guessed it - the Mid-Manhattan Library (across 5th Ave from the Main building) on Saturday, December 3 at 2:30 PM, and is followed by a lecture on the novel.

And how could we not mention Garrison Keillor just this one time? On Friday, December 2rd, and continuing through the Christmas season, the novelist and host of NPR's Prairie Home Companion will begin broadcasting weekly from Town Hall (123 W. 43rd St., near Broadway). The tickets range from $35 to $60. We'd love to go, does anyone have a Secret Santa for us?