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FEBRUARY 27, 2013
March Madness Book Sale at Standley Lake Library
March Madness isn’t just about college basketball. It’s also the month when the Standley Lake library holds its annual super-awesome book sale.
 
This year the March Madness sale is taking place March 8th – 10th, 10AM-4:30 each day.
 
The sale presents a major opportunity for people to find incredible deals. With over 7,000 books, CDS, and DVDS, you’re guaranteed to find a great selection at the following unbeatable prices:
 
Hardbacks - $1
Childrens books - $.50 – 1
Audiobooks - $1-3
Nonfiction - $1 – 2.50
 
There’ll be some specially priced like-new items. Best of all, Sunday is Bag Day. Fill a grocery bag full with books and get them all for just $6.
 
As with the yearly Whale of a Sale event, the money made at March Madness goes toward the library Foundation, which in turn uses it to support library programming. Funds generated by the sale help purchase the new books awarded to children and teens at the end of the library’s Summer Reading Club. Last year almost 15,000 children and teens met the requirements needed to earn a free book.
 
JCPL would not be able to provide that many new books to the kids and teens without the support of the Foundation, and the Foundation wouldn’t be able to do it without the support the public provides through our booksales. So come to Standley Lake on March 8th – 10th and get some great books while supporting a worthy cause.

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posted by Sean, Standley Lake Library

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FEBRUARY 27, 2013
Aloysius Pendergast

Two GravesSpecial Agent Aloysius Pendergast is one of the most interesting characters in suspense fiction today.  He is the creation of co-authors Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.  These authors have written 12 novels in which Pendergast appears.  Aloysius X. Pendergast is a Special Agent of the FBI from New Orleans.  He is described as corpse pale, with white blonde hair, silver eyes, is fairly tall, but has a slight frame.   He wears only black suits, and drives a pair of 1959 Silver Rolls Royces.  He is in the FBI but only takes a salary of $1 per year, as he comes from old Louisiana money. He has been in the Special Forces, holds a double doctorate from Oxford, and is also an expert in the eastern art of Chongg Ran. A master of disguise, Pendergast has the ability to solve puzzles that rivals Sherlock Holmes.
We met him first in Relic ,1995, followed by Reliquary, 1997, both set in the New York Museum of Natural History. The newest Pendergast book is Two Graves, 2012, which moves from New York’s Dakota building to the jungles of Brazil. The books often have a supernatural aspect to them and are always page turners. So pick up the first Pendergast and enjoy!

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posted by Carol, Arvada Library

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FEBRUARY 26, 2013
A Book We Love: The Leisure Seeker

The Leisure Seeker by Michael Zadoorian The Leisure Seeker

In 2008, John and Ella Robina abandon their adult children in Detroit for one last trip across the country in their 1978 Leisure Seeker motorhome.  Big deal, you say. Well, John has Alzheimer’s disease and Ella has terminal cancer and they are determined to enjoy every last minute of their life together.  They decide to stick to the old Route 66 to keep off of the scary interstate highway system. Filled with memories of their lives together and some humorous moments, The Leisure Seeker turned out to be much more serious than I expected. Lots of end of life issues are pondered in this unique novel.

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posted by Marie, Columbine Library

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FEBRUARY 22, 2013
Flashback: September 1957

Elizabeth and Hazel:  Two Women of Little RockElizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock.  New Haven: Yale University Press, c2011.

In the iconic photograph, the young black woman in dark glasses averts her gaze while clutching a stack of folders.  A crowd appears behind her, the camera focusing on the jeering face of a young white woman.  Elizabeth and Hazel is the fascinating story of what happened to these two high school students - Elizabeth Eckford and Hazel Massey - after this photo was snapped in 1957. 

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posted by Emily, Columbine Library

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FEBRUARY 20, 2013
A Book We Love: The Light Between Oceans

The Light Between Oceans: a Novel by M. L. StedmanThe Light Between Oceans

In the aftermath World War I, Tom Sherbourne is still recovering psychologically from the war when he takes the job as lighthouse keeper on tiny Janus Island off the coast of Australia.  He hopes the solitude and steady job will help him recover from the devastating memories of the wounded, the dying and the killing.
He never expected a young woman from the mainland town to be attracted to him, let alone want to marry him. Tom and Isabel are deeply in love when they marry and settle on the remote island.  Life goes relatively well until she suffers 2 miscarriages and then a still born birth. Shortly after, a boat washes up on the shore and inside it Tom and Isabel find a baby girl and a dead man.  Undone from her losses, she begs Tom to let her have time with the baby before they notify the authorities.  Against his better judgment, he relents but this decision and subsequent actions will lead to a family and to a love that he never knew he could feel. It will also lead to his downfall and ruin.  This first novel brilliantly persuades us to suspend any simple judgments of how a good man could make such a wrong decision.
 

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posted by Judy, Belmar Library

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FEBRUARY 15, 2013
Westerns on Screen

If you like watching westerns, you might try some of the following DVDs: The Outlaw Josie Wales

The Outlaw Josey Wales
The Outlaw Josey Wales stars Clint Eastwood as Josey Wales.  Josey refuses to surrender to Union soldiers after the war.  He returns home to find his family murdered and that is where his quest for revenge begins.  This is one of my favorite westerns because Clint Eastwood gives a great performance as Josey Wales. 

Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid 
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid stars James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson and Bob Dylan.  Pat Garrett is the new lawman in town and he is in charge of capturing Billy the Kid, his former partner in crime.  Who will win – the lawman, backed by cattle interests, or the outlaw, backed by the people?  Watch the DVD to find out!

3:10 to Yuma
Russell Crowe and Christian Bale star in this newest version of 3:10 to Yuma.  Daniel Evans, a small farmer, is struggling to keep his land when he gets a chance to make $200 transporting the famous outlaw, Ben Wade, to justice.  After losing a great deal of confidence and part of his leg in the Civil War, Daniel Evans is struggling to redeem himself in the eyes of his teenage son.  Is Daniel able to save his land and restore the image his son has of him?  I guess you will have to watch 3:10 to Yuma to find out!   

The Professionals
In The Professionals, a rich Texan rancher hires four mercenaries to rescue his wife from a revolutionary in Mexico.  However, not everything is as it seems, as the mercenaries soon find out.  The Professionals was made in 1966 and although it has it serious moments, it is a fun and lighthearted western.  Jack Palance gives a great performance, along with Burt Lancaster and Lee Marvin.

 

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posted by Sunshine, Columbine Library

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FEBRUARY 13, 2013
A Book We Love: The Mouse That Roared

The Mouse That Roared by Leonard Wibberley

The Duchy of Grand Fenwick, a tiny nation forgotten by the world, struggles to cope with a financial crisis and with the modern world. The humorous novels chronicling the Duchy of Grand Fenwick’s inventive solutions and international misadventures were written during the frigid depths of the Cold War.  The “Mouse” novels brought the welcome release of laughter to readers who were themselves trying to cope with frightening times. These satiric novels offer new generations of readers insightful, humorous views of life in a time of fear and international intrigue that still ring true today.

Leonard Wibberley, a prolific 20th century Irish author, spent much of his writing life in the United States and his 100 works included fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, short stories, articles and screenplays.  Wibberley is perhaps best known for his book The Mouse that Roared, the first in the satiric “Mouse” series. The book was later made into a motion picture starring Peter Sellers and Jean Seberg.

In addition to printed books available for checkout from JCPL, some of Wibberley’s short stories and articles are available for reading online through JCPL’s Ebscohost database.

Cormac and Marianne Wibberley, children of Leonard, are also writers, and some of their works are available through JCPL.

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posted by Jo, Golden Library

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FEBRUARY 11, 2013
A Book We Love: The Sense of an Ending

The Sense of an EndingThe Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes

The premise is fairly simple:  three boys meet in grade school and encounter a fourth, a new kid named Adrian, who is cerebral, exceedingly quiet and preternaturally calm.  The narrator of The Sense of an Ending is Tony Webster, one of the gang, who is now fully grown and is recounting his young life and how it led him to his present predicament.  But that comes later.

Back in the past, no one is surprised when Adrian earns himself a place at Cambridge.  He reads philosophy, naturally.  But the real conflict begins when Adrian begins dating Veronica, one of Tony’s ex-girlfriends.  There is a falling out in which a nasty letter is written, and before Tony and Adrian can patch things up, Adrian commits suicide.

Fast-forward fifty years.  Tony has recently retired from the civil service and is living a quiet life as a pensioner in London.  Having studied and graduated, married and divorced, Tony wonders if the details of his risk-averse, rather nondescript life have been determined by circumstance rather than by choice; that is, he wonders if his life, always so cautiously lived, is simply something that he passively experienced as it happened to him.

Many years later, Tony discovers that Adrian (now deceased) had willed Tony his diary.  Tony believes that it may hold clues to Adrian’s death and may afford him some closure.  There’s only one problem: Veronica (Tony’s ex- and Adrian’s erstwhile companion) has possession of the diary and she’s unwilling to part with it.  In his attempt to secure the diary, Tony must confront another figure from his past, and face the possibility that his life has betrayed some of his early ideals, as well as the memory of his dead friend.    

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posted by Chris, Belmar Library

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FEBRUARY 8, 2013
Three Great Growing-Up Books

Few of us remember adolescence with much fondness, but perhaps that’s why authors are able to mine those formative years for inspiration. For readers, compelling young characters help us remember our own youthful struggles – and remind us of how much we’ve grown. Here are three recent books (from three different sections of the library) with convincing adolescent protagonists:

 

Liar and SpyLiar and Spy by Rebecca Stead
Seventh-grader Georges has a lot to deal with: his father lost his job and the family’s Brooklyn home, his mom is always working, and he’s a target of nasty bullies at school. Then a new friend from his apartment building enlists Georges’ help spying on a mysterious neighbor. How Georges learns to stand up for himself and forge new friendships is at the heart of this delightful children’s novel.

Ask the PassengersAsk the Passengers by A. S. King
Astrid Jones, 17, is just trying to get through high school in her small town. Her mother is critical of her, her father is perennially checked out, and she’s keeping a big secret – she’s in love with a girl. When Astrid and her friends are busted for underage drinking at a gay bar, she’s forced to figure out exactly who she is under the scrutiny of family, friends, and classmates. This YA novel is about how the community defines Astrid, and how she defines herself.

The Age of MiraclesThe Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker
Part coming-of-age novel, part dystopian sci-fi, The Age of Miracles is the story of what happens when the earth’s rotation inexplicably slows. Days and nights lengthen, crops fail, birds drop from the sky – and a San Diego tween named Julia is growing up, dealing with shifting friendships and nursing a crush on a neighborhood boy. This is a haunting, character-driven story of apocalypse and the ordinary disasters of adolescence.

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posted by Briana, Evergreen Library

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FEBRUARY 6, 2013
What’s new in brain science?

As scientists uncover more and more secrets of the brain, that knowledge is making its way into books to be read and enjoyed by all. Below is an assortment of some of the most popular; from personal stories to improving your own life to shedding light on events in history.

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, 2011
This book is listed on many best books of 2011 lists. Kahneman takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. The author reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. Reading this book will surely change the way you think about thinking.

Hallucinations by Oliver Sacks, 2012
With his usual elegance, curiosity, and compassion, Dr. Sacks weaves together stories of his patients and of his own mind-altering experiences to illuminate what hallucinations tell us about the organization and structure of our brains, how they have influenced every culture's folklore and art, and why the potential for hallucination, present in us all, is a vital part of the human condition.

Brain on Fire: my month of madness by Susannah Cahalan, 2012
The story of twenty-four-year-old Susannah Cahalan and the life-saving discovery of the autoimmune disorder that nearly killed her -- and that could perhaps be the root of "demonic possessions" throughout history.

The Brain that Changes Itself: stories of personal triumph from the frontiers of brain science by Norman Doidge, 2007
An astonishing new science called neuroplasticity is overthrowing the centuries-old notion that the human brain is immutable. Psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, the author traveled the country to meet both the brilliant scientists championing neuroplasticity and the people whose lives they've transformed -- people whose mental limitations or brain damage were seen as unalterable.

The Age of Insight: the quest to understand the unconscious in art, mind, and brain: from Vienna 1900 to the present by Eric R. Kandel, 2012
Age of Insight takes readers to Vienna in 1900, where leaders in science, medicine, and art began a revolution that changed forever how we think about the human mind -- our conscious and unconscious thoughts and emotions -- and how mind and brain relate to art. It is a wonderfully written, superbly researched, and beautifully illustrated book that also provides a foundation for future work in neuroscience and the humanities.

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posted by Kay, Golden Library

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FEBRUARY 4, 2013
What’s on your list of favorite books of 2012?

The Fault in Our StarsLots of newspapers, magazines, companies, and organizations create and publish best of lists of books at the end of every year.  I always get great ideas for my own reading list, but looking at these lists also gives me inspiration to think back to what I’ve read over the last year and reminds me of my own personal favorites.  Post a comment and let us know what you’ve enjoyed reading in 2012!

Emily’s 2012 Picks:

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
One of the funniest, saddest, and most poignant books I’ve ever read. 

Paris In Love:  A Memoir by Eloisa James
A charming and humorous tale of a family’s time abroad living in the City of Light.

Pure by Julianna Baggott
This is a unique and highly imaginative addition to the popular genre of post-apocalyptic fiction.  Baggott’s imagery is hard to get out of your head. 

Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness
The second in a planned trilogy telling the modern and historical stories of witches, vampires, and demons.  I can't wait for the third book to come out!

 

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posted by Emily, Columbine Library

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FEBRUARY 1, 2013
Try a New TV Series

I am probably in the minority out there.  My cable bill is $15 a month.  If I can get good reception on the main channels and watch Criminal Minds and Cold Case reruns on ION, I am a happy camper.  And then there are those times that the lure of the HBO, AMC and other networks series shows is simply undeniable.  Darkness is coming earlier and the weather guys keep telling us it is going to get cold.  What a perfect time to hole in and watch great TV?  And you don’t have to wait for the following week to see another episode!  Four or five in one night?  There are those times when it just feels right.  These are adult dramas with adult themes I am suggesting so be aware.  What series to watch?  Here are three of my favorites.  There are other series from other networks out there.  Try a search on IMDB under TV/Top TV Series.

Six Feet Under (HBO)
Five seasons 2001-2005
This addictive drama series takes a darkly comical look at members of a dysfunctional California family that runs an independent funeral home.  Each episode begins with a death, some hilarious, and the funeral home preparations surrounding that death.  These characters will become part of your life in an inexplicable way.  The final episode is the best I have seen.

The Wire (HBO)
Five seasons 2001-2008
Before you even order the first season of this series, be sure you know how to turn on your subtitles.  I spent the first season seldom being able to understand the dialog.  Set in Baltimore, this show centers around the city's inner-city drug scene.  We see the Baltimore drug scene through the eyes of drug dealers and law enforcement and it is not pretty – gritty, violent, rough – be prepared for lots of language. There are those moments though when the humanity of the characters is undeniable and endearing.

Rome (HBO)
Two Seasons 2005-2007
This series, again from HBO, was a down-to-earth account of the lives of both illustrious and ordinary Romans set in the last days of the Roman Republic.  The turbulent transition from Roman republic to autocratic empire is sketched both from the aristocratic viewpoint of Julius Caesar, his family, his adopted successor Octavian Augustus, and their political allies and adversaries, and from the politically naive viewpoint of a few ordinary Romans, notably the soldiers Lucius Vorenus and Titus Pullo and their families.  It is a great historical account of the time.  The characters are engaging and believable.  It's sad that Rome had only two seasons.  Enjoy them!

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posted by Christina, Lakewood Library

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