The Gentleman Recommends: Jen Beagin

Posted on Friday, January 25, 2019 by Chris

My butler says there are two types of people: those that clean and those that make messes. He believes the mess makers should learn from the cleaners. He gently broached the topic while I was having a corn-on-the-cob break. “Intriguing premise,” I hollered. I sat my cob on the ottoman my butler was nearly done shampooing. “I’m inclined to agree,” I said at a reasonable volume. I beckoned for the butter bucket. My butler fetched the bucket and prepared a fresh cob. “But how do we teach those messy folk?” Deep in thought, I scratched my chin with the cob and wiped my buttery hand on the carpet.

My butler sighed in agreement. “Perhaps you could read a book about tidying up.” He hurriedly added, “so that then you could share the message it conveys with those that need to hear it.” As an aside, he added that perhaps books about being self aware and improving one’s memory might also be of interest to me. Continue reading “The Gentleman Recommends: Jen Beagin”

Growing Up on the Spectrum: Docs Featuring Kids With Autism

Posted on Wednesday, January 23, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

Growing up can be challenging, and it can be tougher if you have to deal with autism. Seeing how others on the spectrum deal with triumphs and tribulations can help build confidence for both kids and their families. Check out these docs featuring kids with autism.

The Horse Boy dvd CoverThe Horse Boy” (2010)

When 2-year-old Rowan was diagnosed with autism, Rupert Isaacson and his wife Kristin sought the best possible medical care, but traditional therapies had little effect. They discovered that Rowan has a profound affinity for animals, particularly horses, and the family set off on a quest that would change their lives forever. Continue reading “Growing Up on the Spectrum: Docs Featuring Kids With Autism”

Read (Even) Harder With Contemporary Missouri Poets

Posted on Monday, January 21, 2019 by Cap'n Ludd

Boy trying to stack 25 books for the 25th anniversary of the Columbia Public Library.
From the “Community History Archive

I’m not sure I ever met someone who felt neutral toward poetry — most will feel strongly some type of way, likely a mixture of anxiety and disdain spurred by painful memories of English class. Or maybe absolute adoration causing them to burst into a melancholic recitation of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” from memory. Personally I’m no bard, but lately I’ve wanted to flex those muscles harder. Maybe it’s the residual resolution spirit of the new year. But where to start? What better place than the work of poets in my community?

There are a couple library happenings that got me interested in poetry written by Missourians in particular: Book Riot’s release of their 2019 Read Harder Challenge (see requirement 24 to read a recently published poetry collection) and Missouri’s first Poet Laureate Walter Bargen’s tour of the DBRL branches this quarter. Some of Missouri’s great poets have wide name recognition like Langston Hughes, Sara Teasdale, T.S. Eliot (who famously eschewed his Midwestern roots) and Maya Angelou, but I implore you all to look for poets even closer to home. Below you’ll find a number of local poets in our collection, ranging from Governor-appointed poets laureate to those in the Mizzou community and even DBRL staff. If you’re perusing in person, look for a purple sticker on the book spine which designates work by local authors. But first, a few tips for making poetry resonate with you: Continue reading “Read (Even) Harder With Contemporary Missouri Poets”

Debut Author Spotlight: January 2019

Posted on Friday, January 18, 2019 by Katherine

Start the new year right by picking up a book by one of these new fiction authors. There are plenty of options this month. And, as always, you can find a longer list of new titles in our catalog.

At the Wolf's Table book coverAt the Wolf’s Table” by Rosella Postorino

Left alone in Germany while her husband is fighting on the front lines of WWII, Rosa Sauer leaves Berlin seeking safety and is instead forced by the SS to become one of Hitler’s food tasters. Twice a day she accompanies nine other women to the Wolf’s Lair, Hitler’s secret headquarters, where they taste all of Hitler’s meals before he does. As the war worsens, the group of tasters becomes increasing more fractious, dividing into those who are loyal to Hitler and those who, like Rosa, aren’t Nazis even though they risk their lives to protect one every day. Continue reading “Debut Author Spotlight: January 2019”

The Horseback Librarians of the Great Depression

Posted on Wednesday, January 16, 2019 by Alyssa

Horseback librarian ascends difficult terrain

Some facets of American history are heavily romanticized, and some are unjustly forgotten. For example, mention of the Pony Express conjures images of daring men racing westward, braving the elements to deliver important messages and join the two coasts of America. In actuality, this male-driven, short-lived business venture lasted a mere 18 months and served only the wealthy. Infinitely cooler and yet barely remembered are the horseback librarians (know colloquially as “book women”) who braved long, treacherous mountain routes to deliver books to the poverty-stricken Appalachian community during the Great Depression. Continue reading “The Horseback Librarians of the Great Depression”

January LibraryReads

Posted on Monday, January 14, 2019 by Kat

Library Reads logoWith the new year comes new librarian favorites! I’m excited to start this year on such a positive note with plenty of books. We have a trilogy-finisher, a long-awaited second novel and several heartwarming reads to protect you from the cold and snow outside. Check out these books nominated by librarians across the country with this month’s LibraryReads.

Once Upon a River book coverOnce Upon a River
by Diane Setterfield

“A wonderfully dark and mysterious read. Something happens one stormy winter solstice evening that triggers a chain of events that changes the lives of all the main characters. Moody and mystical. For readers who love gothic fiction like ‘The Death of Mrs. Westaway‘ and ‘The Clockmaker’s Daughter.’”
~Melanie Liechty, Logan Library, Logan, UT Continue reading “January LibraryReads”

Literary Links: List Mania

Posted on Monday, January 14, 2019 by Ida

A few things that prompt me to make lists:

  • Obligations
  • Aspirations
  • Needs
  • Problems
  • Nostalgia
  • Mistrust of my own memory
  • A desire to share reading recommendations

1,000 Books to Read Before You Die

I harbor an extreme fondness for lists, both creating and reading them. Judging by the number of books on the topic, I know I have a lot of company.
Last year saw the publication of three noteworthy books containing suggested reading lists. “1,000 Books to Read Before You Die” is the product of decades of work. James Mustich, a longtime book seller, pulls titles from many genres, time periods and cultures. His suggestions include Plato and Zadie Smith, as well as “The 9/11 Commission Report.” Continue reading “Literary Links: List Mania”

Most In-Demand Nonfiction of 2018

Posted on Friday, January 11, 2019 by Liz

We’re taking a look back at some the most in-demand nonfiction book titles released in 2018 at DBRL. In 2018 there were several categories of nonfiction books that were popular.


Continue reading “Most In-Demand Nonfiction of 2018”

New DVD List: McQueen, Support The Girls & More

Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

McQueen fashion

Here is a new DVD list highlighting various titles recently added to the library’s collection.

Website / Reviews
Playing last year at Ragtag Cinema, this film is a personal look at the extraordinary life, career and artistry of fashion icon Alexander McQueen. Through exclusive interviews with his closest friends and family, recovered archives, exquisite visuals and music, it is an authentic celebration and thrilling portrait of an inspired yet tortured fashion visionary. Directed by Ian Bonhôte and co-directed/written by Peter Ettedgui. Continue reading “New DVD List: McQueen, Support The Girls & More”

Nonfiction Roundup: January 2019

Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 by Liz

Here is a quick look at the most noteworthy nonfiction titles being released this January. Visit our catalog for a more extensive list.

Top Picks

Maid book coverMaid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive” by Stephanie Land
Evicted” meets “Nickel and Dimed” in Stephanie Land’s memoir about working as a maid, a beautiful and gritty exploration of poverty in America. While the gap between upper middle-class Americans and the working poor widens, grueling low-wage domestic and service work  — primarily done by women — fuels the economic success of the wealthy. Land worked for years as a maid, pulling long hours while struggling as a single mom to keep a roof over her daughter’s head. In “Maid,” she reveals the dark truth of what it takes to survive and thrive in today’s inequitable society. Continue reading “Nonfiction Roundup: January 2019”