Friday, October 28, 2011

Happy Halloween!

October 31st - Monday
Library Children's Area
4:00 - 5:00 pm

The Sock Theater is returning with
a whole new show that will have you
laughing and singing from your seat.

Great Halloween fun for families!

Don't forget to wear your costume!

When She Woke by Hillary Jordon

In a dystopian take on Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, When She Woke grabs ahold of its readers from the beginning and never let us go. Hannah Payne wakes up in the Chrome Ward, having been injected with a virus to turn her skin red. Having been found guilty of murder for aborting her unborn child, Hannah has been sentenced to live for 14 years as a “Red,” her skin tone advertising to all what her crime was. During her trial, Hannah refused to name her lover, a famous, married pastor whom she still loves. After 30 days in the Chrome Ward, Hannah is released, but her deeply religious family refuses to take her in. She winds up in a halfway house, but living there becomes intolerable, so Hannah flees, trying her luck in a society that is becoming increasingly dangerous for women. The author blends hot-button issues such as separation of Church and State, abortion, and criminal justice with an utterly engrossing story, driven by a heroine as layered and magnetic as Hester Prynne herself, and reminiscent, too, of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. Controversial? Yes, but an absolute a must-read.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Happy Birthday, Sylvia Plath

Poet Sylvia Plath also wrote one memorable and award-winning novel, short stories, essays, and journals that continue to intrigue readers, even decades after her suicide in 1963. Madness and death dominate her remarkable writing, poetry and prose, with the images becoming increasingly macabre in her late poetry. Haunting, lyrical, and emotionally-charged descriptions characterize her writing. She was awarded a Pulitzer Prize posthumously in 1982 for Collected Poems. The powerful feminist themes in her writing have influenced women writers in the 1960s and beyond. Start with: The Bell Jar (novel) and Ariel (poetry).

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Dave Leiber

Dave Leiber is "The Watchdog"

Are you sick of businesses and scammers
that pick your pocket every month with fees
and hidden charges?

Then you need to fight back!

Dave Lieber can show you how.
As the founder and author of
Watchdog Nation, he can teach you all
you need to know to protect your finances.

Free Workshop @ Your Library.

October 27th - Thursday
Town Hall 3rd Floor
7:00 pm

Monday, October 24, 2011

Horrifying Reads

Get in the mood for Halloween with some super scary reads. These horrors stories -- a mix of psychological and supernatural -- will frighten even those of you with a high fear threshold.

Calling Mr. Lonely Hearts by Laura Benedict

Years after ruining the life of a young priest with their lies, three women--Alice, Roxanne, and Del--find their lives unraveling, thanks to the machinations of the seductive Varick, a mysterious figure who is seeking revenge on behalf of their long-ago victim.

The Dark Matter by Peter Straub

Old friends try to come to grips with the darkness of the past--a secret ritual that left behind a gruesomely dismembered body--and find themselves face-to-face with the evil they helped create.

The Ridge by Michael Kortya

For years, a lighthouse at the top of a hill called Blade Ridge has lit up the surrounding woods. But when the lighthouse keeper is found dead, strange things begin happening to the people and animals in the area.

Friday, October 21, 2011

I Want to Be Jennifer Weiner

Jennifer Weiner is one of those authors that you read and think I want to be friends with her! We should hang out. Allow me to introduce one of my favorite writers, Jennifer Weiner (we even share the same first name! clearly, our friendship was written in the stars). She was born in 1970 on an army base in Louisiana. Jennifer grew up in Connecticut and graduated with a degree in English literature from Princeton University in 1991. She worked as a newspaper reporter in central Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Philadelphia until the publication of her first novel in 2001, and has been a full-time fiction writer ever since.

Jennifer's writing is laugh-out-loud funny, but it also deals with an abundance of real life issues, including: motherhood and career; family rifts; friendship and love. Snappy dialog leavens compelling storylines containing serious undertones. Her protagonists aren't damsels in distress, but rather realistic, feisty, funny, and smart who are not unduly preoccupied by which shoes to wear. Using a conversational, unaffected voice, Weiner moves her stories at a fairly brisk pace, sometimes leaving loose ends that make the stories even more realistic. Start with: Good in Bed.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Los Angeles Philharmonic: the Inaugural Concert

Join us for the monthly International Movie Night tonight at 6:30pm. We will be watching the Los Angeles Philharmonic. This DVD presents the highly anticipated Los Angeles Philharmonic opening night concert on October 8th 2009, led by the orchestra's newly appointed music director Gustavo Dudamel.

A world-class pairing, the L. A. Phil and Dudamel mark the start of their partnership with this concert, filmed live at the Walt Disney Concert Hall. The program defines everything that is fresh and exciting about their collaboration: John Adams world-premiere composition, City Noir, that steps back into the dark past of Los Angeles, and the all-embracing First Symphony by Mahler, the composer who launched Dudamel's dazzling international career.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Kindles, and Nooks, and iPads, Oh My!

The first thing I get asked, once someone discovers I'm a librarian, is if I'm nervous about the disappearance of libraries now that portable readers and digital content are widely available. I respond gleefully, as I clamber onto my soap box, that libraries and iPads (or Nooks or Kindles or whatever fancy schmancy device) are not mutually exclusive. Indeed, the library is very much a part of this next step into the digital frontier. We have free digital content for your devices and we're here to show you to access it. Need some help transferring a title to your device? Done. Got a strange error message? We'll be there, my friend. Scared of the new technology, but you want to learn how to use it, darn it? We will hold your hand through the process. Just ask your friendly librarian.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

If You Like Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Try these readalikes featuring middle school kids chronicling the challenges of school, home, and friendships.

The Strange Case of the Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger
Sixth-grader Tommy and his friends describe their interactions with a paper finger puppet of Yoda, worn by their weird classmate Dwight, as they try to figure out whether or not the puppet can really predict the future. Includes instructions for making Origami Yoda.

Frindle by Andrew Clements

When he decides to turn his fifth grade teacher's love of the dictionary around on her, clever Nick Allen invents a new word and begins a chain of events that quickly moves beyond his control.

How to Survive Middle School by Donna Gephart

When thirteen-year-old David Greenberg's best friend makes the start of middle school even worse than he feared it could be, David becomes friends with Penny, who shares his love of television shows and posts one of their skits on YouTube, making them wildly popular--online, at least.

Big Nate: In a Class by Himself by Lincoln Pierce

Supremely confident middle-school student Nate Wright manages to make getting detention from every one of his teachers in the same day seem like an achievement.

Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Lois Sachar

Humorous episodes from the classroom on the thirtieth floor of Wayside School, which was accidentally built sideways with one classroom on each story.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

To a famous magician is delivered a little girl who, as it turns out, is his child, and fortunately for his future, she is possessed of magical powers. As it also happens, this magician has an archrival, who, in the face of the first magician’s jackpot in the form of his little girl, seeks a young person for him to train to rival her. What the two magicians did not anticipate, as the years pass and the two young people, the girl and the boy whom the second magician found, are honed in their specialty for performance’s sake and to outplay the other one, is that the young persons, when of an age, would meet and, surprising or not to the reader, fall in love. How will their destiny play out now?

Even if you don't like fantasy, you'll enjoy this novel for its enjoy an unusual and well-drawn story. Try if you like: The Time Traveler's Wife, Jonathon Strange & Mr. Norrell, The Magicians, or The Wise Man's Fear.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Corpse Bride

Please join us tonight for our first Family Movie Night. Starting at 6:30pm, in the library, we will be showing Tim Burton's spooktacular The Corpse Bride. It's rated PG, and for more information -- we want you to know all the details so that you can make appropriate choices for your child(ren) -- check here.

Questions? Concerns? Call us at 817.748.8243.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Happy Birthday, Elmore Leonard!

Leonard was born in New Orleans, but because his father worked as a site locator for General Motors, the family moved frequently for several years. In 1934, the family finally settled in Detroit. Leonard has made the Detroit area his home ever since.

In the 1930s, two major events occurred that would influence many of his works. Gangsters such as Bonnie and Clyde were making national headlines, as were the Detroit Tigers baseball team. From about 1931 until they were killed in May, 1934, Bonnie and Clyde were on a rampage. The Tigers made it to the World Series in 1934 while winning it in 1935. Leonard developed lifelong fascinations with both sports and guns.

He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 1943, and immediately joined the Navy, where he served with the Seabees for three years in the south Pacific (gaining the nickname 'Dutch', after pitcher Dutch Leonard [3]). Enrolling at the University of Detroit in 1946, he pursued writing more seriously, entering his work in short story contests and sending it off to magazines. A year before he graduated, he got a job as a copy writer with Campbell-Ewald Advertising agency, a position he kept for several years and wrote on the side.

Elmore Leonard's fast-moving crime writing houses a colorful array of sleazy characters spouting inspired, street-smart dialogue in vividly described locales such as Detroit, Miami and Hollywood. Elmore brings his lean, direct narrative voice to his Western novels as well. His often wry tone suits both genres equally. Sudden eruptions of fierce violence keep readers on edge and off-balance. His fast-paced writing focuses on lifelike, idiosyncratic characters -- in pursuit of a big score, or of each other -- heading toward a final collision that not all will walk away from.

"The next best thing to reading Elmore Leonard is re-reading him." -- Mike Lupica,
New York Daily News

Monday, October 10, 2011

I Don't Want to Read Sci-Fi or Fantasy!

Witches, and wizzards, and vampires, oh my! Do you ever feel like it is almost impossible to find a book that isn't fantasy or science fiction? And you've read and re-read all of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series? Cheer up, Buster, this list is for you.

Schooled by Gordon Korman

Homeschooled by his hippie grandmother, Capricorn (Cap) Anderson has never watched television, tasted a pizza, or even heard of a wedgie, but when his grandmother lands in the hospital, Cap is forced to move in with a guidance counselor and attend the local middle school. While Cap knows a lot about tie-dyeing and Zen Buddhism, no education could prepare him for the politics of public school.

Middle School, the Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson

When Rafe Kane enters middle school, he teams up with his best friend, "Leo the Silent," to create a game to make school more fun by trying to break every rule in the school's code of conduct.

The Year of the Rat by Grace Lin

In the Chinese Year of the Rat, a young Taiwanese American girl faces many challenges: her best friend moves to California and a new boy comes to her school, she must find the courage to forge ahead with her dream of becoming a writer and illustrator, and she must learn to find the beauty in change.

Deliver us from Normal by Kate Klise

With a mother who buys Christmas cards in August and a younger brother who describes the Trinity as a toasted marshmallow on a graham cracker, life for eleven-year-old Charles Harrisong is anything but normal in Normal, Illinois.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Alice Hoffman

Next Tuesday, the Dallas Museum of Art will be hosting Alice Hoffman as a guest speaker as part of their Arts & Letters series. I'm fortunate enough to be attending (woo-hoo!) and in celebration, I'm taking the opportunity to blog about this distinguished writer.

Born in New York City, and raised on Long Island, Hoffman graduated from Adelphi University, where she received her BA, and received an MA in creative writing from Stanford University, where she was an Edith Mirrielees Fellow. Her first job was at the Doubleday publishing house, which later published two of her novels. She has published a total of twenty-one novels, three books of short fiction, and eight books for children and young adults.

Superlatives of Her Work:
Best Known: Practical Magic (You may have seen the movie adaptation)
Most Heartbreaking: At Risk
Best Linked Short Stories: Blackbird House and The Red Garden (a tie!)
Best for Teens: Aquamarine (also adapted into a movie)
My Favorite: The Third Angel
Coming Soon: The Dovekeepers

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Healthy Eats

In honor of the film Forks over Knives that we will be showing tonight, we offer you a list of cookbooks to jumpstart your healthy diet. Are we leaving out one of your favorites? Comment and let us know.

The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone

You may know Ms. Silverstone best from her Clueless character, but in this informative book she Addresses the nutritional concerns faced by many who are new to plant-based, vegetarian diets and shows how to cover every nutritional base, from protein to calcium and beyond. Features irresistibly delicious food that satisfies on every level --including amazing desserts to keep the most stubborn sweet tooth happy.

21 Day Weight Loss Kickstart by Dr. Neil Barnard

Last spring, we were fortunate to have Dr. Barnard as a guest speaker at our library. If you missed out, read his amazing book that focuses on eating as a healthy lifestyle choice. This title covers metabollically active foods, foods that tame appetite demons, cardioprotection, and an abundance of recipe ideas.

Eating Animals by Jonathon Safran Foer
Mr. Foer has been a powerful voice among America's young fiction writers. This is his first book of nonfiction, which he states he was compelled to write once he was a father. In it, he exposes common misconceptions about how animals are slaughtered and processed for food, drawing on sources from ranging from popular culture to national tradition to reveal how the meat industry misrepresents its practices..

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Forks Over Knives

The Southlake Public Library is hosting its inaugural Documentary Movie Night tomorrow at 6:30 pm. Join us for Forks Over Knives, a fil that tackles the issue of diet and disease in a way that will have people talking for years. This documentary examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called diseases of affluence that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed food and adopting a whole foods, plants-based diet.

"A film that can save your life." -- Roger Ebert

"I loved it and I need all of you to see it." -- Dr. Oz

"Convincing, radical, and politcally volatile." -- John Anderson, Variety