More From DBRL...
A Is for Author: Making Children’s Books
Saturday, February 27 › 10 a.m.-Noon
Columbia Public Library, Virginia G. Young Room
Author and illustrator Deborah Zemke loves words, pictures and letters! Join her in a hands-on workshop as she swoops through the alphabet with zeal to touch on the many aspects of making children’s books. Using her own books, pictures, stories and experiences as an example, Deborah will help participants mine their brains and engage their funny bones, make a dummy and use a magic wand to turn nothing into something. You’ll learn more about the world of children’s publishing as you make your own accordion book.
Deborah is the author/illustrator of over 20 books and has illustrated books by authors like Harriet Ziefert. Her newest work, an illustrated chapter book, comes out in early 2016. Adults and ages 12 and older. Registration required. To sign-up, please call (573) 443-3161.
Originally published at A Is for Author: Making Children’s Books.
We’ve compiled a list of previous documentaries available at DBRL from the directors who are presenting films at the upcoming True/False Film Fest. Check out their old films before you attend the fest for their new films!
True/False 2016 film: “The Music of Strangers”
Past films as director: “Twenty Feet From Stardom,” “Troubadours,” “Respect Yourself” (Robert Gordon co-director), “Muddy Waters” (Robert Gordon co-director), “Shakespeare Was A Big George Jones Fan” (Robert Gordon co-director), “Iggy and the Stooges”
To see more about the films showing at True/False 2016, check out the list of films on the True/False website. Be sure to check out our True/False Film Fest films at DBRL to see lists of past True/False films available from your library.
Be sure to register online by Friday, March 4 if you plan to take the April 9 ACT exam. If you would like to know more about testing locations, exam costs and fee waivers, please visit our online guide to ACT/SAT preparation. The library also has a wide selection of printed ACT and SAT test guides for you to borrow.
Our most popular resource for test-takers, though, is LearningExpress Library. Through this website, you may take free online practice tests for the ACT or SAT exam. To access LearningExpress Library, you will need to login using your DBRL library card number. Your PIN is your birthdate (MMDDYYYY). If you have questions or encounter difficulties logging in, please call (800) 324-4806.
Finally, don’t forget to subscribe to our blog updates for regular reminders of upcoming test registration deadlines!
Originally published at March 4 Deadline for April ACT Exam.
The March LibraryReads list is here! This month we have historical fiction, a smart thriller, an urban fantasy and even Jane Eyre re-imagined as a gutsy serial killer. Place your holds now on these 10 titles recommended by librarians across the country.
“The Summer Before the War” by Helen Simonson
“Fans of Simonson’s ‘Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand‘ have reason to rejoice. She has created another engaging novel full of winsome characters, this time set during the summer before the outbreak of World War I. Follow the story of headstrong, independent Beatrice Nash and kind but stuffy surgeon-in-training Hugh Grange along with his formidable Aunt Agatha. Make a cup of tea, and prepare to savor every page!” – Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI
“Jane Steele” by Lyndsay Faye
“Jane Steele is a great read for lovers of Victorian literature who especially love their characters to have a lot of pluck! Jane Steele is the adventurous, irreverent, foul-mouthed broad that I so often loved about Jane Eyre, but in more wily circumstances. Remember that fabulous scene in Jane Eyre when she stands up to her aunt for the first time, and how you wanted to stand up from your comfy reading chair and cheer for her? Imagine an entire book just of those sorts of scenes. Absolutely fabulous fun!” – Abbey Stroop, Herrick District Library, Holland, MI
“The Passenger” by Lisa Lutz
“This is a compulsively readable story of a young woman who has to keep switching identities and stay on the run. Is she a reliable narrator or not? What was the original event that sent her on the run? There is a lot of action and suspense as she tries to survive and evade the law while trying to keep her moral center intact. Unlike Lutz’s Spellman books, this reads more like a Charles Portis road novel, though considerably more serious and dangerous. Highly recommended.” – Beth DeGeer, Bartlesville Public Library, Bartlesville, OK
And the rest of the list for your holds-placing pleasure:
- “Marked in Flesh” (a novel of the Others) by Anne Bishop
- “The Nest” by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney
- “Fool Me Once” by Harlan Coben
- “The Madwoman Upstairs” by Catherine Lowell
- “Because of Miss Bridgerton” by Julia Quinn
- “Dimestore: A Writer’s Life” by Lee Smith
- “All Things Cease to Appear” by Elizabeth Brundage
The post Top Ten Books Librarians Love: The March 2016 List appeared first on DBRL Next.
Civil War Living History Day
Saturday, March 12, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
During this indoor “encampment,” youngsters will learn what the Civil War was like in Missouri, particularly in Callaway County. Union and Confederate re-enactors and historians will model historic garb, tell stories, share period food and recipes and answer questions. Library staff will suggest books for all ages. Sponsored by the Elijah Gates Camp 570 Sons of Confederate Veterans. Drop in anytime with your family. Teachers are welcome, too. Ages 6-14. Please call the Callaway County Public Library for location information: (573) 642-0662.
Originally published at Civil War Living History Day.
Book lovers and festival goers! Please mark your calendars immediately because Saturday, April 23 will be a celebration of books and writing not to be missed. The Unbound Book Festival is a brand-new event in Columbia, celebrating literature of all kinds. Nationally-recognized and bestselling authors across many different genres will be on hand to discuss their work and participate in a variety of stimulating events and environments. The inaugural event will take place on the campus of Stephens College, and all of the events are FREE! Here are just some of the writers who will be at the fest along with links to their works here at the library. Look for another post in two weeks for the poets who will be a part of Unbound. (Author information courtesy of Unbound Book Festival.)
- Eleanor Brown is the New York Times and international bestselling author of “The Weird Sisters,” which was an Amazon Best Book of the Month, Barnes and Noble Discover Selection, Indie Next pick and winner of the Colorado Book Award.
- Laura McBride is the author of the 2014 debut novel “We Are Called to Rise,” which was a #1 Indie Next pick and a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writer’s choice in the United States, and both a Simon Mayo BBCRadio2 Book Club selection and a Waterstones Book Club pick in the UK.
- Laura McHugh is the bestselling author of “The Weight of Blood,” winner of an International Thriller Writers Award for Best First Novel. “The Weight of Blood” was named a best book of the year by BookPage, the Kansas City Star and the Sunday Times (UK), and has been nominated for a Barry Award, Alex Award, Silver Falchion Award and GoodReads Choice Award.
- Shann Ray is the author of the debut novel “American Copper,” an Indie Next Pick that has garnered acclaim from Esquire, Kirkus Reviews and the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association. His collection of short stories, “American Masculine,” received the American Book Award and the Bakeless Prize.
- Bob Shacochis is a novelist, essayist, journalist and educator. His work has received a National Book Award for First Fiction, the Rome Prize in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. He graduated from the University of Missouri Journalism School in 1973 and earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Iowa Writers Workshop in 1982. “The Immaculate Invasion,” about the 1994 military intervention in Haiti, was a finalist for the New Yorker Magazine Literary Awards for best nonfiction book of the year and was named a Notable Book of 1999 by the New York Times. His most recent work, the novel “The Woman Who Lost Her Soul,” was published in 2013.
- Candice Millard is a former writer and editor for National Geographic magazine. Her first book, “The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey,” was a New York Times bestseller and was named one of the best books of the year by, among others, the New York Times, Washington Post and Christian Science Monitor. Millard’s second book, “Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine & the Murder of a President,” rose to number five on the New York Times bestseller list and was named a best book of the year by the New York Times, Washington Post, Amazon and Barnes & Noble. “Destiny of the Republic” won the 2011 Edgar Award for Best Fact Crime, the PEN Center USA award for Research Nonfiction, the One Book-One Lincoln Award, the Ohioana Award and the Kansas Notable Book Award.
- Nina Mukerjee Furstenau’s writing is “lush and lyrical” (Kansas City Star) and her memoir, “Biting Through the Skin: An Indian Kitchen in America’s Heartland,” won the Grand Prize as well as the 2014 MFK Fisher Book Award from Les Dames d’Esscoffier International for food and culture writing.
- William Least Heat-Moon was born of English-Irish-Osage ancestry in Kansas City, Missouri. He holds a bachelor’s degree in photojournalism and a doctorate in English from the University of Missouri. Among his writing credits, he is the author of “Blue Highways,” which spent 42 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list in 1982-83.
- George Hodgman is a veteran magazine and book editor who has worked at Simon & Schuster, Vanity Fair and Talk magazine. His writing has appeared in Entertainment Weekly, Interview, W and Harper’s Bazaar, among other publications. His memoir, “Bettyville,” is a New York Times bestseller, the Amazon spotlight pick for March 2015 and a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist.
- Kayt Sukel is passionate traveler and science writer, and she has no problem tackling interesting (and often taboo) subjects spanning love, sex, neuroscience, travel and politics. Her work has appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, the New Scientist, USA Today, Pacific Standard, the Washington Post, ISLANDS and National Geographic Traveler. Her first book, “Dirty Minds/This is Your Brain on Sex,” is an irreverent and funny tome that takes on the age-old question, “What is love?” from a neurobiological perspective.
Check out Unbound Book Festival’s website for more information on these and other writers coming to mid-Missouri in April.
The post Columbia’s Unbound Book Festival: A Reading List (Part One) appeared first on DBRL Next.
In celebration of Teen Read Week, the Daniel Boone Regional Library invited area young adults to submit an original short story around the theme “Get Away.” The library received an astounding 111 entries from students throughout Boone and Callaway counties. These teen authors wrote about grand adventures, secret hideaways and escapes from the ordinary.
This presented a challenging task for our panel of 15 judges whose responsibility it was to determine a winner from among such a large and talented pool of teen writers. After several weeks of reading and jurying these entries, DBRL Teen is proud to announce the contest winners and publish their stories (PDF).
- First Place: “The Ticket” by Georgie Wright
- Second Place: “Thrill of the Chase” by Teresa Tang
- Third Place: “A New Life” by Anonymous
At the conclusion of our short story contest, we prepare for the launch of our next competition. Help us get ready for Summer Reading by designing an original bookmark based on the theme “Ready, Set, Read.” Winning artwork from each library will be printed on bookmarks to be distributed throughout Boone and Callaway counties. Find contest rules and a downloadable entry form at teens.dbrl.org or at your library after March 1.
Originally published at Teen Short Story Contest Winners Announced.
In recent years, video games have risen to prominence as a storytelling medium, engaging people young and old. These documentaries take a look at video games and how we deal with them in the real world.
“King of Kong” (2007)
Unprecedented rivalry rocks the electronic world to its core. This film follows novice gamer Steve Wiebe on his quest to destroy the top score of gaming legend Billy Mitchell, the uncontested champion of the Donkey Kong world for over 20 years. Only one can truly claim the title King of Kong.
“Second Skin” (2008)
“Second Skin” takes an intimate, fascinating look at computer gamers whose lives have been transformed by the emerging, hugely popular genre of computer games like World of Warcraft, Second Live and Everquest, which allow millions of users to simultaneously interact in virtual spaces.
“Reformat the Planet” (2008)
A feature length documentary which delves into the movement known as ChipTunes, a vibrant underground scene based around creating new, original music using old video game hardware. The film also explores the genesis of the first annual Blip Festival, a four day celebration of ChipTune music.
A feature documentary on the history of video games. From Pong, Pac Man and Mario to Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto and everything in between, it tells the story of how this industry was created, by whom and where it is headed.
The Unbound Book Festival is coming to the Stephens College campus on Saturday, April 23! This is a brand new FREE festival in Columbia featuring nationally renowned authors discussing, signing and reading from their books. Enjoy programs and panel discussions about fiction, nonfiction, poetry and writing.
Daniel Boone Regional Library is excited to be part of this new Mid-Missouri festival! With funding from the Friends of the Columbia Public Library, we have arranged for all the children’s and young adult authors and performers. We encourage educators to incorporate their works into lesson plans or story times.Children’s and Teen Events
Macklanburg Playhouse, Stephens College
Saturday, April 23
Justin Roberts, 10 a.m. & 5:30 p.m.
This Grammy-nominated children’s musician is truly one of the all-stars of the indie family music scene. He has performed in front of millions on “The Today Show” and he’s been featured on Nick Jr. TV. Check out his music CDs at the library.
Bobby Norfolk, 12:30 p.m. & 4:15 p.m.
Bobby Norfolk is a three-time Emmy Award-winning storyteller and author. Using dynamic movement and vocal effects, Bobby creates vibrant characters who come to life through imaginative, creative story. Check out his audiobooks at the library.
Deborah Zemke, 1:45 p.m.
Deborah Zemke is an award-winning local children’s illustrator and author. She has worked on over 40 different books, eight of which she has written herself. Check out many of her bright and colorful titles at the library.
Antony John, 3 p.m.
Antony John is the author of the Schneider Award-winning book, “Five Flavors of Dumb.” He has also written six other titles for teens. You may check out his books in either print or downloadable format from the library.
Originally published at Children & Teen Authors at Unbound Book Festival.
As Valentine’s Day approached, I, like most red-blooded Americans probably, found my thoughts turning to Richard Nixon. Coincidentally, I was absorbed by Austin Grossman’s latest novel, “Crooked.” “Crooked” is the first-person account of Richard Nixon’s rise to power and fall from power, and subsequent rise to power and fall from power. While others have chronicled Nixon’s life, none before have touched on the terrifying truth: Nixon was one of the few that knew the U.S. and U.S.S.R. had moved beyond the mutually assured destruction via mundane nuclear weaponry and were onto mutually assured destruction via weaponized monsters and pacts made with the elder gods that walked the earth before being banished below the surface.
It’s no surprise that Henry Kissinger was a thousand-year-old sorcerer, but the reader won’t expect to learn that Dwight Eisenhower could stop a bullet with magic, or that the British had long been allies with a miles-long krakken, and that the monster had plucked German planes out of the sky during World War II. These sorts of treats are abundant in the novel, as are fantastic sentences such as follows:
I had, I realized, lost track of whether I was a centrist Republican stalwart, a right-wing anti-Communist demagogue, a mole for Soviet intelligence, the proxy candidate for a Bavarian sorcerer, or the West’s last hope against an onrushing tide of insane chthonic forces.
Near the beginning of the novel we get a glimpse of Nixon’s fabled romantic streak and a taste of what is to come:
This is a tale of espionage and betrayal and the dark secrets of a decades-long cold war. It is a story of otherworldly horror, of strange nameless forces that lie beneath the reality we know. In other words, it is the story of a marriage.
Also, the reader learns why Nixon sweated so much during that one debate, and what was up with that Watergate debacle.
Grossman’s experiences as a video game designer provided fodder for his previous novel, “You.” The tale of a successful video game studio whose co-founder died and left behind a bug that threatened to break their gaming engine, much of the novel is spent watching the narrator play video games as he searches for the bug, which is more exciting than it sounds, unless you love watching people play video games, in which case it is approximately as exciting as it sounds.
Those weary of superheroes being confined to movie theaters, televisions, comics, Halloweens, lunchboxes and underwear will devour Grossman’s first novel, “Soon I Will Be Invincible.” A story of superheroes and a super-villain, it alternates chapters between their perspectives, and while it is funny, it’s an homage to the genre rather than a spoof. Even those who don’t wish for constant immersion in comic book universes should find the novel to be a well-written romp with a big heart. The reader will learn that sometimes superheroes have tremendous trouble in their personal lives, that they often rely on painkillers and sometimes super-villains are reduced to stealing away into the night with an entire ATM in order to pay the rent.
VOTE NOW through February 21 for the Sweet 16!
Daniel Boone Regional Library has received over 75 ballots in our March Madness Teen Book Tournament! Through a series of votes, we are narrowing our list of the 32 most popular teen books to one grand champion. Voting for the Sweet 16 will end on Sunday, February 21. We’ll take a few days to tabulate the results and then announce those titles that will advance in our single elimination bracket on Thursday, March 3.
Which titles will be among the Sweet 16? “Shadow and Bone” by Leigh Bardugo? “Throne of Glass” by Sarah J. Maas? “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” by Ransom Riggs? Voice your opinion by voting today! Don’t forget that by supporting your favorite book, you’ll also be entered to win prizes like a gift card to Barnes & Noble.
Who can participate?
March Madness is open to all teens ages 12-18 who live in either Boone or Callaway County, Missouri.
How It Works:
- Round 1: VOTE NOW through February 21 for the Sweet 16.
- Round 2: Vote March 3-8 for the Elite 8.
- Round 3: Vote March 10-15 for the Final 4.
- Round 4: Vote March 17-22 for the final two contending titles.
- Round 5: March 24-April 5 for the book tournament champion.
- April 8: The champion is announced!
Each round that you vote, your name is entered into our prize drawing! Limit one ballot per person, per round.
Originally published at Voting for Sweet 16 Ends February 21.
Last year, Alzheimer’s was much discussed in popular media, as Julianne Moore won all of the awards for her portrayal of a 50-year-old linguistics professor with the early onset form of the disease, in the movie “Still Alice.” The movie was based on Lisa Genova’s novel of the same title. Genova, a neuroscientist as well as an author, knew what she was about in portraying the effects of a condition that strips away your memory.
A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease can seem overwhelming for the patient and family members. But support and information are available. Below are some helpful resources for those coping with dementia, as well as their caregivers.
“What You Need to Know About Alzheimer’s”
Thursday, Feb. 18, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Friends Room, Columbia Public Library
Learn basic information about memory loss, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease at this interactive workshop with videos featuring researchers, caregivers and people with Alzheimer’s disease. Presented by the Greater Missouri Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association as part of a continuing series.
“Are the Keys in the Freezer?” by Patricia Woodell
This book is subtitled “An Advocate’s Guide for Alzheimer’s and Other Dementias.” Along with her sisters/co-authors, Jeri Warner and Brenda Niblock, Woodell shares lessons learned by her family as they helped her mother live with advanced dementia. It’s a mix of personal anecdotes and practical advice from experts in medicine, law and elder care.
“I’ll Be Me”
Country music star Glen Campbell could no longer remember the month or season, but he could remember how to play guitar. In 2011, he set out on a goodbye concert tour, shortly after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. This documentary follows him for the year and a half he continued to perform, showing that even as every area of his life became increasingly difficult, there was still joy to be found in music.
“The Validation Breakthrough” by Naomi Fell
This practical guide focuses on tips and techniques for improving communication with those who have dementia.
For more resources, see our catalog list.
Every January the American Library Association hosts its annual Youth Media Awards Press Conference. At this time, authors and illustrators of children’s and young adult literature are recognized for the amazing works they have published over the last year.
Of this year’s honorees, I am the most excited about Alex Award winner Keija Parssinen. Her book, “The Unraveling of Mercy Louis,” is one of the top ten adult books recommended for teen readers. The novel follows a high school basketball star in a small Texas oil town. A disturbing discovery and the spread of a mystery illness among the town’s girls spark a witch-hunt, revealing long-kept secrets and shaking the community’s faith. Fun Fact: Keija crafted her story from the third floor reading room of the Columbia Public Library!
So, have you read any of this year’s award winners? What did you think? Who might you have picked for this year’s top awards?
Alex Award Winners are the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences.
- “The Unraveling of Mercy Louis” by Keija Parssinen
- “All Involved” by Ryan Gattis
- “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coate
- “Bones & All” by Camille DeAngelis
- “Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits” by David Wong
- “Girl at War” by Sara Novic
- “Half the World” by Joe Abercrombie
- “Humans of New York: Stories” by Brandon Stanton
- “Sacred Heart” by Liz Suburbia
- “Undocumented: A Dominican Boy’s Odyssey from a Homeless Shelter to the Ivy League” by Dan-el Padilla Peralta
Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults.
- Award Winner: “Bone Gap” by Laura Ruby
- Honor Book: “Out of Darkness” by Ashley Hope Pérez
- Honor Book: “The Ghosts of Heaven” by Marcus Sedgwick
John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature.
- Award Winner: “Last Stop on Market Street” by Matt de la Peña and illustrated by Christian Robinson
- Honor Book: “The War that Saved My Life” by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
- Honor Book: “Roller Girl” by Victoria Jamieson
- Honor Book: “Echo” by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award recognizes an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults:
- Award Winner: “Gone Crazy in Alabama” by Rita Williams-Garcia
- Honor Book: “All American Boys” by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
- Honor Book: “The Boy in the Black Suit” by Jason Reynolds
- Honor Book: “X: A Novel” by Ilyasah Shabazz with Kekla Magoon
Odyssey Award for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adult.
- Award Winner: “The War that Saved My Life” by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley and narrated by Jayne Entwistle
- Honor Book: “Echo” by Pam Muñoz Ryan and narrated by Mark Bramhall, David de Vries, MacLeod Andrews and Rebecca Soler
Pura Belpré (Author) Award honors a Latino writer whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience:
- Award Winner: “Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir” by Margarita Engle
- Honor Book: “The Smoking Mirror” by David Bowles
- Honor Book: “Mango, Abuela, and Me” by Meg Medina and illustrated by Angela Dominguez
Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience.
- Middle School Award Winner: “Fish in a Tree” by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
- High School Award Winner: “The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B” by Teresa Toten
Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award is given annually to children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered experience.
- Award Winner: “George” by Alex Gino
- Honor Book: “Wonders of the Invisible World” by Christopher Barzak
- Honor Book: “Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU” by Cory Silverberg and Fiona Smyth, illustrated by Fiona Smyth
William C. Morris Award for a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens.
- Award Winner: “Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda” by Becky Albertalli
- Finalist: : “Because You’ll Never Meet Me” by Leah Thomas
- Finalist: “Conviction” by Kelly Loy Gilbert
- Finalist: “The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly” by Stephanie Oakes
- Finalist: “The Weight of Feathers” by Anna-Marie McLemore
YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults.
- Award Winner: “Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War” by Steve Sheinkin
- Finalist: “Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir” by Margarita Engle
- Finalist: “First Flight Around the World: The Adventures of the American Fliers Who Won the Race” by Tim Grove
- Finalist: “Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad” by M.T. Anderson
- Finalist: “This Strange Wilderness: The Life and Art of John James Audubon” by Nancy Plain
Originally published at 2016 ALA Teen Book Award Winners.
Chess, crafts and gaming! Mark your calendars now for these cool after-school events scheduled for February at the Southern Boone County Public Library in Ashland.
Thursday, February 4, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Southern Boone County Public Library
Join us for basic chess instruction and a chance to play one of the world’s oldest games at this drop-in program. Ages 11 and older.
Make a Valentine
Tuesday, February 9, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Southern Boone County Public Library
Drop by to make a Valentine’s Day card for someone special. We’ll provide the materials. You provide the inspiration and love. All ages.
Wii Game Time
Wednesday, February 10, 2:45-4:30 p.m.
Southern Boone County Public Library
Think you have the best dance moves? Prove it! Can you drive like Mario? Bring it! Come play a variety of games on the Wii U. Treats served. Teens.
Thursday, February 11, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Southern Boone County Public Library
Join us for basic chess instruction and a chance to play one of the world’s oldest games at this drop-in program. Ages 11 and older.
Tuesday, February 23, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Southern Boone County Public Library
Bookmarks don’t have to be a flat piece of paper. We’ll show some interesting alternatives. Then you can create a unique bookmark for yourself or as a gift. Ages 8-14.
Originally published at Afterschool in Ashland.
Election season will soon be upon us! No, not the presidential election, but your chance to choose between the two finalist titles for One Read 2016. Our reading panel is hard at work, making their way through this year’s nominated books to choose two to present to the public for a vote. Starting April 11, you will be able to vote here at oneread.org, at any library branch or on the bookmobile. So sharpen your pencils and charge your devices, and thank you for your support of your community-wide reading program!
February 11 marks the 169th birthday of Thomas Edison. Known for holding over 1,000 patents, Edison’s work left a huge impact on the world. He helped usher in the era of electric light and gave the world a way to capture both sound and motion pictures. There are those who believe that Edison was a ruthless businessman, his iconic image more myth than reality, and that many of his great ideas should in fact be attributed to others. So what is the truth? The library offers several interesting items that explore different perspectives on Edison and the stories behind his many creations.
Readers interested in Edison’s many inventions may want to check out Leonard DeGraaf’s book, “Edison and the Rise of Innovation.” DeGraaf serves as the archivist for the Thomas Edison National Historical Park and draws from the collection he oversees to give readers an image-filled guide to Edison’s life and work. From photos of Edison’s workplace in Menlo Park, to drawings and diagrams of his many creations, DeGraaf illustrates the broad scope of Edison’s creativity.
Of all of his creations, Edison’s fame may have been his most incredible undertaking. Randall Stross’ book, “The Wizard of Menlo Park: How Thomas Alva Edison Invented the Modern World” examines the fame Edison experienced during his lifetime and how he built his larger-than-life image. Stross’ book focuses more on Edison’s celebrity than his technical achievements, even downplaying them as less impressive than the public persona he created. By the end of his life, Edison held not only multiple patents, but also the title of the most well-known American in the world.
Edison not only seemed to crave fame, but he also was highly competitive. As the idea of electric power became a reality, Edison found himself drawn into the race to capture it for public consumption. “Empires of Light: Edison, Tesla, Westinghouse, and the Race to Electrify the World” by Jill Jonnes explores the exciting race between Edison (who was pushing for DC power) and the eccentric Nikola Tesla and businessman George Westinghouse (who both were pushing for AC power). Jonnes’ book illustrates the challenges they faced as they worked to take their ideas from the drawing board to reality, as well as the somewhat ruthless methods Edison employed to ensure he would win the race.
One thing that is certain of Edison is that a big part of his success came from his ability to work with the other great minds of his day, particularly those in the financial and political worlds. Mark St. Germain’s play, “Camping with Henry and Tom: A Comedy,” offers a funny and entertaining take on a real-life meeting between Edison, President Harding and Henry Ford. Imagine the discussions the three may have had! The library offers both the print edition and the audiobook version of St. Germain’s play. (It is a great listen for a road trip!)
Whatever his exact role in shaping the technology of the 20th century, Edison certainly was an unforgettable character. Happy reading!
Random Acts of Kindness
Monday, February 15, 2-4 p.m.
Columbia Public Library
Bring more happiness into the world by helping us celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Week, February 14-20. Come learn about this national event, make plans for how you’ll participate and create cards and other handmade items to give to others. Columbia Public Schools are not in session on this day. Ages 4-18. No registration required.
Originally published at Program Preview: Random Acts of Kindness.
In honor of Black History Month, here are some newer titles that explore the varied experience of being black in America, some from historical perspectives and others from a contemporary point of view.
“Brown Girl Dreaming” by Jacqueline Woodson
In vivid poems that reflect the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, an award-winning author shares what it was like to grow up in the 1960s and 1970s in both the North and the South.
“The Family Tree: A Lynching in Georgia, a Legacy of Secrets, and My Search for the Truth” by Karen Branan
A provocative true account of the hanging of four black people by a white lynch mob in 1912 is written by a descendant of the sheriff charged with protecting them and draws on diaries and letters to piece together the events and motives that led up to the tragedy.
“Jam on the Vine” by LaShonda Katrice Barnett
A poor, African-American Muslim girl in rural, racially segregated turn-of-the-century Texas, Ivoe Williams discovers a passion for journalism while pilfering old newspapers from her mother’s white employer. Ivoe, together with her former teacher and lover, Ona, starts Jam! On the Vine, the nation’s first female-run African American newspaper. Loosely based on pioneering journalist Ida B. Wells and Charlotta Bass, this is a dramatic debut novel.
“The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl” by Issa Rae
These essays on the challenges of being black and introverted in a world that glorifies “cool” behavior, drawn from the author’s award-winning social media series, share self-deprecating perspectives on such topics as cybersexing, weight and self-acceptance.
“The Sellout” by Paul Beatty
In this satirical take on race, politics and culture in the U.S., a young black man grows up determined to resegregate a portion of an inner city, aided by a former Little Rascals star who volunteers to be his slave. This illegal activity brings him to the attention of the Supreme Court, who must consider the ramifications of this (and other) race-related cases. A provocative novel.
“The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace” by Jeff Hobbs
This work of nonfiction presents the life of Robert Peace, an African American who became a brilliant biochemistry student at Yale University but after graduation lived as drug dealer and was brutally murdered at the age of thirty.
“The Turner House” by Angela Flournoy
Learning after a half-century of family life that their house on Detroit’s East Side is worth only a fraction of its mortgage, the members of the Turner family gather to reckon with their pasts and decide the house’s fate. A powerful portrait of an American family.
For local events, history and research tools, visit our Black Culture and History subject guide.
Wii U Family Game Time
Friday, February 12, 4-5:30 p.m.
Columbia Public Library
Become a dancing superstar in Just Dance 2015, a gold cup winner in “Mario Kart 8” or a party animal in “Mario Party 10.” Snacks provided. Ages 10 and older. Parents welcome. Columbia Public Schools are not in session this day. Registration required. To sign-up, please call (573) 443-3161.
Originally published at Program Preview: Wii U Family Game Time.
My daughter, Samantha, and I joined a mother-daughter book club when she was in fourth grade. The club consisted of the two of us and Samantha’s best friend and her mother. That club lasted until we had to move just before the start of sixth grade. And even though we are now just a club of two, Samantha and I have continued reading books together. We are currently reading “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott. (Samantha chooses the books even if I offer suggestions.)
When I ran across the title “Her Next Chapter: How Mother-Daughter Book Clubs Can Help Girls Navigate Malicious Media, Risky Relationships, Girl Gossip, and So Much More” by Lori Day, I couldn’t resist and requested that it be purchased for the library. I think we did fine with our book club, but now that I have read this one, I really wish we had had the benefit of its recommendations and insights from the beginning. The first part of the book gives tips on how and why to begin a mother-daughter book club and how to keep it running smoothly. Part two delves into topics such as gender stereotypes and sexism, the sexualization of childhood (and how to bypass it), body image, bullying and how to be allies, encouraging healthy relationships, how to be inclusive, female leadership and the welfare of girls and women around the world. Each topic chapter highlights one or two books, provides discussion questions, suggests activities and finishes with a list of recommended books, including some kid appropriate, adult level books, movies/TV and media with suggested age ranges.
Our club read books such as “The Giver,” “Hunger Games” and “Divergent” that led us into discussions about utopias/dystopias and how those societies reflect our own. We also had some deep discussions about race and racial violence when we read “Number the Stars,” and “If We Must Die: A Novel of Tulsa’s 1921 Greenwood Riot.” We even had discussions about about — shhhhh — s-e-x when we read “The Fault in Our Stars,” “Speak,” and “Fangirl.” And, of course, once you have read the books, who can resist seeing and comparing the movies?
I can’t overstate what our mother-daughter book club has meant to me. I’m sure that it would have meant a lot to us even if we had not moved, but it became so much more important because of the move. I miss having other members in our club if for no other reason than to help us narrow down book club selections! I also miss the camaraderie and support that we gained from our other mother-daughter pair, and I would love for our club to expand again someday. But I’m so glad that we had this partnership developed ahead of our move to help support us through the loss of friends, family, pets, our place in the world and, at times, our sanity. I hope we continue for a long, long time.