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SEPTEMBER 29, 2006
New features in the PALS Catalog
Two new features in the PALS catalog help you find exactly what you want using keyword searching.

Spell checking: If you misspell a word in your search, the catalog will suggest an alternative. If you enter "Montery Bay", you will see Did you mean Monterey bay?. If the suggested word is not correct, "Click here for more choices" will give you a pull-down menu of similar words.

Relevance ranking: Keyword search results are now displayed in groups based on how likely each record is to match what you are looking for. There is a bar icon and explanation at the beginning of each group:

More improvements in the PALS catalog are planned soon. Please give us your comments and suggestions, and stay tuned!

posted by Doug

Category: Library Tech

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SEPTEMBER 28, 2006
Water for Elephants
Ever considered running off to join the circus?

That's not quite what Jacob Jankowski meant to do when he ran away from his life in the 1930's, but the circus found him. His veterinary school never taught him how to care for lions and elephants, but it soon became an everyday part of his life.

This novel, based on some of the most interesting true circus stories of that time is a great read for anyone who's ever wished they could join the circus (or is just curious to find out what happened behind the scenes)!

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

posted by Kim S.

Category: Staff Reads

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SEPTEMBER 28, 2006
Celebrate Your Freedom to Read!
You may have heard in the news this week that libraries and bookstores across the country are recognizing the 25th annual Banned Books Week.

“Banned Books Week celebrates the freedom to choose or the freedom to express one’s opinion even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular and stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints to all who wish to read them.” -ALA.org

Why don't you celebrate the freedom to read by stopping by and checking out some books!

posted by Kim S.

Category: In the Know

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SEPTEMBER 21, 2006
Teen Read Week Coming Up
Every year, teens are invited to vote for your Top Ten favorite titles – titles that have been nominated by other teens. You can view the Nominations NOW and then vote between October 15-21.

Speaking of book reviews, the Library awards a prize at the end of each month to the lucky teen who submits a book review. Your review can be any length to qualify for the random drawing. Submit your reviews and view other teen reviews at the Library's Teen Events page.

Congratulations to Kaitlin, who won the August prize of a Del Monte Center Movie ticket!

posted by Debbie

Category: Teen Zone

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SEPTEMBER 18, 2006
Freaky book
Does being a teenager ever feel like being a freak? Or a werewolf? Or a vampire? I just finished reading Freaks; Alive on the Inside by Annette Curtis Klause. It's about a "normal" 16-year-old boy who grows up living in a freak show. In the late 1800's these shows traveled from town to town and the public came and gawked at folks like Abel's parents. When Abel leaves to find a more "normal" life, he finds instead more cruelty than he had ever imagined. He has sexual dreams about a woman in Ancient Egypt. My favorite line is at the end of a chapter: "And then the mummy moved." This book is based on real human diversity and these bizarre shows. Like Klause's books about teen vampires and werewolves, Freaks makes you think about how it feels (or in my case - felt -) to be a teenager with a body that sometimes seems to be totally weird. Read more reviews and reserve the book

posted by Karen

Categories: Teen ZoneStaff Reads

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SEPTEMBER 16, 2006
Music for Teens
Ok, maybe you already know this, but just in case you don’t! Music for teens is located in the adult music bins across from the check-out desk. Some recent titles that we’ve purchased, to name just a few:
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb
New Amsterdam live at Heineken Music Hall
Stadium Arcadium
Be sure to let us know if there’s a particular title you think we should buy, or add a comment to this blog and let us know what you’re enjoying!

posted by Debbie

Category: Teen Zone

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SEPTEMBER 13, 2006
The Stevenson Connection
Over the weekend, it was my pleasure to attend a reception hosted by the Robert Louis Stevenson Club of Monterey. I was there to represent the library in welcoming to Monterey several members of the RLS Club, visiting here from Edinburgh, Scotland.

The event was held in the recently refurbished Stevenson House. It was a joy to be in that magical place again - a Mexican era adobe and former Bohemian haunt - where visitors can now enjoy both Stevenson memorabilia and the local art that is exhibited there. Equally enjoyable was spending the evening with people who share the library's interest in preserving aspects of our cultural heritage and who work to promote an appreciation for literature.

The Stevenson connection? Robert Louis Stevenson stayed in this house during his very brief visit to Monterey in 1879. What's more, he left for us a wonderful record of his impressions of our city at a very pivotal time in its history. This can be found in a chapter entitled "The Old Pacific Capital" in Across the Plains. This is highly reommended reading for anyone interested in Monterey's history.

posted by Jeanne

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SEPTEMBER 13, 2006
Special Event this Weekend!
In celebration of the Monterey Jazz Festival this weekend, the library is hosting The Times of Dave Brubeck: A Traveling Exhibit.

In fact, Brubeck's musical tribute to Cannery Row is to be highlighted at the 2006 Monterey Jazz Festival Sunday night.

Brubeck is renowned world-wide as a pianist and composer of jazz and classical music. He is a California native, and is also known for his support of human rights and cultural exchange. This exhibit on loan from the University of the Pacific Library provides a visual and auditory display of his musical and cultural accomplishments as well as the impact of jazz on the civil rights movement and US foreign policy.

The exhibit will be located Friday through Sunday in the Community Room during library hours. Admission is free.

*Photo- 1960s: Brubeck Collection, Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library. Copyright Dave Brubeck.

posted by Kim S.

Category: In the Know

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SEPTEMBER 13, 2006
Library Video
You can now view streaming video of Cover to Cover programs on the Library web site. Library staff members discuss good books for your reading pleasure.

Check the Library Video page as more programs are added.

posted by Doug

Categories: Library TechStaff Reads

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SEPTEMBER 12, 2006
New Collection! Graphic Novels for Adults
Hello Graphic Novel fans! We know you’ll be excited to learn that we’ve added a “Graphic Novels for Adults” collection. We’ve had them for teens for a number of years and for children for about a year, and now we have them for adults! Want to check them out? Go upstairs and look at the first shelf where the Books on CD used to be (the CD's have been moved to the next shelf). Or, search the catalog for Subject: Graphic Novels and limit your search to adult fiction and adult non-fiction.
Currently, it’s a small collection, but we’ll be adding to it as time goes along. Be sure to let us know if there’s a particular title you think we should buy, or add a comment to this blog and let us know what you’re enjoying!

posted by Debbie

Category: In the Know

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SEPTEMBER 8, 2006
Computer Fun
Currently we have a display up near the front door featuring some of our computer books. The books cover a variety of topics such as hardware, programs, web-design, blogging, and more!

Next time you're having computer problems or just want to learn something new, don't forget to see if the library has a book that could help you.

Additionally, our goal is to have what you need so we're always reviewing the collection. Your feedback is welcome!

If you have a specific title you'd like to see the library add to its collection go ahead and enter the information on this webpage.

If there's just a computer related topic you'd like to see more or newer books for, leave a comment here.

Thanks!

posted by Kim S.

Category: In the Know

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SEPTEMBER 6, 2006
Honeymoon with My Brother
As promised, here's another book from my summer reading list. Honeymoon with My Brother is a memoir by Franz Wisner, a successful young executive, whose carefully planned wedding at Northern California's historic Sea Ranch, is called off when his fiance gets cold feet. About 70 of the guests decide to come anyway to console the jilted groom, show their support, and to make use of their non-refundable airline tickets. The only detail that was impossible to resolve was the pre-paid honeymoon in Costa Rica. So, Franz invites his brother to join him for an all-expenses paid vacation in paradise, where the two hike, soak up local color, eat delicious food, meet interesting people, and drink lots of concoctions with little umbrellas sticking out of them. They have such a great time that when Franz returns home to discover that he's been demoted, he quits his job, rents out his house, and invites his brother to join him on a two-year tour of the world.

The two don't bother with western Europe and the comfort of nice hotels. Instead, they don backpacks and take the off-the-beaten path to 53 different countries in Eastern Europe, Asia, South America, and Africa. During the course of their journey, they encounter interesting, weird, and wonderful places and people. Better yet, the two re-establish the once-close relationship they enjoyed in their boyhood. During their two years on the road, old wounds are healed and some important shifts take place in their worldview. This book is funny, touching, sometimes almost painfully personal, and very well-written. Enjoy!

posted by Jeanne

Category: Staff Reads

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SEPTEMBER 4, 2006
White shark, the sequel
Every year, thousands of visitors enjoy the Central Coast and its historic, cultural and oceanic splendors. The Monterey Public Library provides local information, free Internet and wi-fi to our city's guests - and benefits from the tourism dollars spent in our community.

Three days ago, a very special finned visitor arrived at the Monterey Bay Aquarium - a young white shark - the second to be housed temporarily in the Outer Bay exhibit area. His power and grace are riveting.

As long as he's in good health, and under the Aquarium's care, we'll be watching him online, and wishing him well - and we'll make sure we have lots of white shark information to check out!

posted by Kim BB

Categories: In the KnowDirector's Blog

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