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Keeping you up-to-date on what's happening at your library. We invite you to join in the conversation!
JUNE 30, 2010
It Was A Pirate’s Life!
 Yes, Miss Megan and I spent the day as pirates.  I have to say, she made a better pirate than I,  I think.  Though, we were both told by a good authority that we did not look scary. 
Regardless, the library was certainly filled with lots of budding buccaneers.  We began with pirate stories.  Then there were pirate self portraits.  Come to the library to see them!  Then came the real adventure….
Pirate masks, parrots that could reside on one’s shoulder, telescopes, pirates everywhere!  It was a rough crowd. We were lucky we came out unscathed.  Thus reinforcing the well know facts: don’t mess with pirates or librarians.
For the record, we are not the first lady pirates.  According to the history books there was Anne Bonney,  Mary Read, Grace O’Malley, and one of my favorites, Ching Shih, a Chinese woman who sailed the China Sea in the early 19th century and is said to have commanded 1800 ships and about 80,000 pirates.
If you’d like more information about lady pirates, librarians, or pirate librarians come check out the library!

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by S Epstein


JUNE 28, 2010
Don't Judge a Book by It's Cover!
Or should you.? It is sometimes difficult to practice the creed of this sage advice when looking at book art.  Whether I'd like to or not, I find I do judge the book by its cover. I've become super aware of the covers after becoming a fan of one of my librarian friend, Linda William's (Connecticut Youth Services Consultant) excellent blog Jacket Whys. Read a few posts and I'm certain you'll be hooked. Linda's blog focuses on young adult covers (read the about section of her blog for more info) and in doing so makes many valid points that easily cross over to adult jackets. There's always lots of great discussion on the blog. 

Recently our book group got together to pick next year's selections. One of the books we chose is The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie O'Farrell. Take a look at the 4 covers for this book. 

The first is the 2006 hardcover edition.


The second is the 2007 hardcover edition.


And here are two versions of the trade paperback.


Confusing? Why so many different takes for the same book?

Visit Maggie O'Farrell's website to see the cover featured there. Does this mean this is the cover the author prefers? I have no idea. I do know that when I went to purchase copies of the book I had strong feelings about which appealed to me. Why? I haven't read the book but I do know that it is the story of of two sisters in colonial India and 1930s Edinburgh and the secrets that bind them and tear them apart. Which of the covers even begins to bring the vision of Esme, a fiercely intelligent, unconventional young woman? Which one caught my eye and made me want to pick it up to find out more? Which one did I want to read? 

How about you? Which cover sparks your curiosity? Please post your choice. I don't want to influence you, so which I picked email me at

Add a comment  (3 comments) posted by CarolK


JUNE 25, 2010
What's a pirate's favorite kind of socks?
I know, hilarious. Seriously though, I am just trying to get in the mood for one of our upcoming programs, ‘It’s a Pirate’s Life for Me.’ On Wed. June 30th at 2:00 the library will be teeming with young buccaneers making all sorts of pirate-y crafts and checking out our collection of pirate books. Su and I might even dress up!
I don’t know what it is about pirates, but kids love them. They seem to have become more and more popular over the past couple years, especially with the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy (hello Johnny Depp!). Their popularity has certainly carried over to children’s books; here are just a few that have come out in recent years:




Anyways, we hope to see you there! And on that note, I'll leave you with one more bad pirate joke...


Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Megan Q.


JUNE 23, 2010
Digital Challenges For U.S. Public Libraries
On June 21, 2010 Omar L. Gallaga reported about digital challenges for public libraries on All Things Considered.   The story reported on the newly released study by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the American Library Association.  But the news was not new:  As libraries face budget cuts, they are shortening operating hours while the need for expanded digital services is increasing.   It’s definitely a new age as some places now require you apply for a job, file your forms, get your information, etc. solely online.  There simply IS no other option.  For those without Internet access – this means the public library.  But what is one supposed to do if their library is closed?  Has no service? Or a long wait list for thirty minutes on the computer?
Some findings from the study include: 
  • 67 percent of libraries say they're the only provider of free public access computers and Internet in their communities.
  • 15 percent of libraries report reduced operating hours. More than 55 percent of urban libraries report funding cuts.
  •  89 percent of libraries provide technology training, including skills, software and job-seeking training.
  •  82 percent of libraries provide Wi-Fi access.
To listen to the npr story – click here
To read the fact sheet of the report click here.

Add a comment  (1 comment) posted by Su


JUNE 21, 2010
Jimmy Carter rabbit incident
Yesterday, at a family picnic, my grandson was enjoying the pool. When he finally got out I was teasing him about taking his bunny Juliet for a swim. He looked at me as if I was nuts. Bunnies don't swim or do they? Grandpa piped in that he remembered an incident many years back where President Carter was fishing and a rabbit attacked him. No one seemed to remember this story. Not me, not the young people at the picnic, nor the older ones, closer to my husband's age ! He began to believe he dreamed it. Finally we called our life line (my daughter) who asked her mate (long-time military no less) and neither of them could recall the event. But! She could and would look it up on the net... 

See the story here, including links. It happened on April 20, 1979. Yes, it's true and commonly known as the Jimmy Carter Rabbit Incident or The Killer Rabbit Attack. 

So rabbits do swim; I would never have believed it. 


Big Bad Bunny / story by Franny Billingsley ; art by G. Brian Karas.
The magic rabbit / Annette LeBlanc Cate.
Knuffle Bunny : a cautionary tale / by Mo Willems. 

32 third graders and one class bunny : life lessons from teaching / Phillip Done. 

and for a bit of "rabbit" horror try these 

Bunnicula : a rabbit tale of mystery / by Deborah and James Howe ; illustrated by Alan Daniel.
and the sequels to this vampire bunny tale!

and believe it or not there are books called Killer bunnies and Zombie raccoons & killer bunnies but don't be frightened. We don't own them!

Add a comment  (1 comment) posted by CarolK


JUNE 18, 2010
Catch the Reading Wave…
Come one, come all! School is out for the summer here in Columbia, and that means the beginning of our 2010 Summer Reading Program! Registration will begin on Monday, June 21st, and will remain open all summer. Those who sign up can win prizes all summer long by keeping track of their reading in their reading logs. You can also earn raffle tickets all summer by reading and playing Library LINGO, these raffle tickets will go into a drawing at the end of the Summer Reading Program. We will also have special events and programming all summer! Animal programs, art programs, science programs, crafts, parties, movies, and more!

Be sure to stop by or call to sign up for our kick-off program, Bubblemania: Comedy with a Drip, with bubble artist Casey Carle. The program will be held on Friday June 25th @ 2:00 in Yeoman’s Hall.
Last year 198 kids and teens signed up for our Summer Reading Program, let’s see if this year we can get over 200 participants! Call Megan @ 228-0350 or stop by the library for more information.

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Megan Q.


JUNE 16, 2010
Hang on!

What would summer be without an amusement park, fair or carnival?  And in particular, a roller coaster.  I LOVE roller coasters!  Oh, I don’t ride them.  I’m terrified.  In fact, I’ve been known to turn into a whining, hysterical mess on rides that don’t ever leave the ground.  To be fair I have ridden a few, and one of my proudest moments in this context was exiting Disney’s Tower of Terror, but …
I don’t ride roller coasters. 
I do love to watch roller coasters, however.  Their serpentine like motion and their speed mesmerizes me.  I could watch for hours, especially the ones that drop straight down, offer inverted corkscrew turns and now, the latest thing I’ve seen is one in which riders lay flat, suspended from the bottom of the track and almost literally fly. How cool is that?
We’ve come a long way since 1884, when on this very date, Coney Island opened it’s first roller coaster.  But in investigating that for this post, I learned something I found even more fascinating.  Allegedly the first roller coasters were built in the 1600’s.  The first looping coaster was in 1840 in France.  And here I thought this was some 20th century marvel!
If you’re like me, and like the idea of the roller coaster more than the fact of the roller coaster, come to the library and check out some of these titles!
Using math to design a roller coaster / by Hilary Koll, Steve Mills, and Korey T. Kiepert.
Bear flies high / Michael Rosen ; illustrated by Adrian Reynolds. 

The amusement park mystery / created by Gertrude Chandler Warner ; illustrated by Charles Tang.



The carousel keepers : an oral history of American carousels / by Carrie Papa.



Five People You Meet in Heaven / Mitch Albom.

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Su


JUNE 12, 2010
Here Comes the Bride

June was once the choice of engaged couples to get married. Old fashioned thoughts of love and marriage called out to me to do a wedding display. Several years ago I did a similar display called Wedding Bell Blues but this time I wanted to go the whole nine yards, with wedding dress and all, including a real bride! And oh, what fun I had putting this one together.

Meet Muriel, our Saxton B. Bride. Muriel has been tucked away in the Moor's Indian School, just waiting for her big day. She is a bit nervous as her day approaches, and found it difficult to keep her head attached, as well as other body parts in the right place for her journey to the library. We never did find her hands but figured her dress would hide this flaw. Muriel must have dieted like many brides-to-be do,  a good thing as her wedding dress fit  perfectly; we think a trim size 1-2.  Made for her! Her beautiful gown was purchased at Savers, a community thrift center, as Muriel is nothing if not a frugal shopper.

As the wedding approaches, the proud grandma, sisters, aunts, etc. helped Muriel try on her wedding gown.

Muriel has caused heads to turn these past few weeks, even receiving another proposal of marriage. But Muriel is not fickle, she's a one man woman, so eat your hearts out guys!

If you're heart is longing for a good love story featuring the weddings, marriage or brides try these:

some more recent fiction...

Honolulu Alan Brennert.
Shanghai Girls: a novel / Lisa See.
Bride Quartet Series by Nora Roberts beginning with
Vision in White
Something Borrowed & Something Blue by Emily Giffin
Wedding season / Katie Fforde.
Fatally flaky / Diane Mott Davidson.
The wedding girl / Madeleine Wickham.

Recent Non-fiction:
For better : the science of a good marriage / by Tara Parker-Pope
Committed : a skeptic makes peace with marriage / Elizabeth Gilbert.
Marry him : the case for settling for Mr. Good Enough / Lori Gottlieb
Cleaving : a story of marriage, meat, and obsession / Julie Powell. 

Dvd's ~ all owned by Saxon B.
Rachel's Wedding
Runaway Bride
Betsy's Wedding
My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Father of the Bride
Last Chance Harvey
27 Dresses
Mamma Mia
After the Wedding
Wedding Crashers
Tim Burton's Corpse Bride
Princess Bride
Picture Bride
The Wedding Date
The Wedding Banquet
Monsoon Wedding
Muriel's Wedding
The Best Man
The Wedding Planner
Wedding Singer
Syrian Bride
Son of the Bride

Some lists:
The Guardian's 10 of the Best Weddings List 
The Wedding Bell Blues list   
"Compiled by the subscribers of the Fiction_L mailing list."

a recent blog post by Becky  on RA for All

or come int the library and see what's on the display! or add one of your own favorites...

Don't forget there's also books to help you plan those weddings, wedding cakes, wedding music, wedding shower games, toasts & vows...just ask, we can help you find them...



Add a comment  (3 comments) posted by CarolK


JUNE 9, 2010
The “Why Don’t They Leave the House?” Syndrome

Generally speaking, I really like gothic romantic mysteries.  You know the type:  a recently windowed/orphaned/long lost relative comes to a rural place where the residents are distant/a little odd/cold to her, but she has inherited this wonderful castle/Victorian house/cottage by the sea where mysterious things start to happen…
I recently listened to The Tale of Halcyon Crane by Wendy Webb, a novel marketed for book groups that was just this sort of thing.  It promised ghosts, kidnapping, murder, witches… in other words, it had it all.  And it did.  And I did like it.  But…
Unfortunately it suffered from the annoying "Why Don’t They Leave the House?” syndrome that plagues much of this genre.  While not as bad as Poltergeist, the quintessential example of this syndrome, it still held what for me are logical inconsistencies.
If you believe a ghost is doing bad things in your home on day 3 at 5 p. m. and again on day 5 at 3 a. m. and yet again on day 7 at 8 a. m., why is it a surprise to you on day 10?  Does it not strike you odd that your new beau who has lived in the secluded town for 35 years, does not recognize the name of your housekeeper?  And do you not find it odd that he doesn’t mention this?  If its sleeting, freezing and icky, is it not odd that Black-eyed Susan’s are growing on the front lawn?
I find it very frustrating.
Now, I’ve started thinking, can you write a believable or at least plausible story of this nature?  I don’t know, but I am tempted to try.
If you’ve read a good tale that does not suffer this Syndrome let me know!  Of course, you can also come check out Halcyon’s story at the library!


Add a comment  (2 comments) posted by Su


JUNE 5, 2010
Vole or Mole ~ that is the question!
I'm always amazed at the little things that will catch my eye and get me thinking about how they relate to books. This past Sunday I was reading the FAQ Man column in the Money & Life section, Hartford Courant.. A reader's lawn was being destroyed by burrowing creatures, either moles or voles and wanted to know how to tell which was the culprit. The answer given by Angie Hicks,, got to the "root" of the problem. Moles tunnel below ground and push up the roots of grass, while voles tend to tunnel through the grass and above ground. Moles eat grubs and earthworms, voles eat grass seed and destroy the lawn's root system.

I'm certain you'll find books that would help you rid your lawn of moles and voles in our collection (try 635 section) or by using the excellent resources at More fun though would be to read a story featuring one or the other of these animals. You'll be delighted by their antics and they won't hurt your lawn.

 The moles have it when it comes to the written word...


Mouse and Mole, fine feathered friends / by Wong Herbert Yee

Upstairs Mouse, downstairs Mole / by Wong Herbert Yee

Mole and the baby bird / by Marjorie Newman ; illustrated by Patrick Benson

One dark nightt / Lisa Wheeler ; illustrated by Ivan Bates.



The adventures of Danny Meadow Mouse / Thornton W. Burgess ; original illustrations by Harrison Cady adapted by Thea Kliros.

The tale of Jeremy Vole / Stephen R. Lawhead.

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by CarolK


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