Although I’m employed by a rather large library with many materials to meet my needs, I cannot help but find myself intrigued by what is probably the smallest of all collections, the “Little Library.” Little free libraries recently have become somewhat of an international phenomenon, popping up in benevolent people’s front yards and inviting anyone and everyone to choose a book with the hope that they replace it with another for someone else to enjoy. What a concept!
Part of the charm of these quaint little structures is that they are unique as the books inside. They help convey the same welcoming message of the library community to come take a peek and see what might just capture your interest and even become your next great read.
Check out www.littlefreelibrary.org for more information, which includes a map of LFL locations and details for crafting your own. It’s contagious!
Are things feeling a little askew in the NEW books section lately? Not to worry–many items near the Readers Services Desk have shifted in order to make better use of precious space. Please note that the Readers Services Reference materials have moved, too, and are now found at the very end of the NEW Nonfiction.
Take a quick look the next time you’re in and browse the collection. Not finding what you’re looking for? As always, feel free to ask.
“The top 10 books published this month that librarians across the country love.”
Looking for your next good read hot off the presses? This site delivers. Each month LibraryReads.org highlights only newly published adult titles (including ebooks) that have been nominated by librarians. Readers will find both fiction and nonfiction selections. If you love hearing the buzz about fresh releases getting a thumbs-up from library staff, peruse these lists.
The goal here is similar to what our Readers Services staff members try to do everyday, which is to, while representing a broad range of reading tastes, put our favorite books into the hands of as many public library users as possible who might enjoy them. When we find a gem, word-of-mouth can be the best way to spread the news!
Here’s a sample of what you’ll find featured right now:
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout & Sara Corbett
How the Light Gets In by Louise Penny
The Returned by Jason Mott
Songs of Willow Frost by Jamie Ford
Sometimes it feels as if I gain more good reading suggestions from our readers than vice versa! A perfect example took place the day before my summer vacation started. While chatting with a patron she threw out a last-minute title–had I read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes? Her enthusiastic review prompted me to place a reserve. Surprisingly, it became available the very next day (perfect timing, as I headed out of town). Not only did I enjoy it, but I ended up sharing it with my teenage daughter, which in turn inspired some interesting discussions regarding character personalities, funny/touching moments, and without revealing too much about the plot, life and death decisions made at the conclusion of the novel. Never having read this author before, I probably wouldn’t have otherwise selected it (contemporary love story set in the London area with a quadriplegic male as the protagonist).
Seems like we’re all on a quest for that great book, and since time is short and therefore something we want to use wisely when reading, it can be nice to spend it absorbed in a work others have already enjoyed.
You’ve been reading and then diligently recording finished titles on your “Have Book–Will Travel!” book log, and now it’s finally here: LOG-IN TIME.
As of Wednesday, June 12, summer reading participants can now officially sign in at either the Readers Services or Reference & Information Services desks. Please bring along your “passport” to reading (i.e., book log) and your St. Charles Public Library card in order to be registered in our exciting program and to earn fabulous prizes! Select a coupon (while supplies last) once a week (Wednesday to Wednesday) every week that you sign in with us.
And if you’re looking ahead,the last day to participate is Wednesday, August 7. Have a great summer!
Spring is in the air and, thankfully, so are our friends, the birds! Early in the morning the robins have been chattering in my neighborhood, patiently awaiting the trees to sprout some leaves. If you have a bird feeder or a bird bath nearby, attendance has most certainly skyrocketed. Their return inspires me to refresh my bird song recognition. The Library has some clever books to help with this process:
Bird Songs: 250 North American Birds in Song 598.1594 BEL
Fun and interactive book that allows the reader to select songs by number and listen along.
Birdsong by the Seasons: A Year of Listening to Birds 598.1594 KRO
Includes 2 CDs of birdsongs
. . . or if you’re just in the mood for a good read featuring birds:
Bright Wings: The Illustrated Anthology of Poems
About Birds 808.819362 BRI
Includes a brief detail of each featured breed.
Sparrow: Poems by Carol Muske-Dukes
National Book Award Finalist
The Big Year: A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession 598.07234 OBM
Humorous account of birdwatching to the extreme.
Robin illustration from The Graphics Fairy
Did you know that Cracker Barrel offers a “Books on Audio” rental collection? Here’s how it works: You purchase a copy of one of their many popular CD audiobooks, listen, then return it to another one of their many restaurant locations for a refund minus a $3.49 fee for each week you’ve had it. Readers then select another title and the process starts over again. How convenient–dinner and a good book!
A patron recently shared this tidbit with me while at our library stocking up on CD audiobooks for an extended trip. How savvy: By meeting a basic travel need (entertainment), Cracker Barrel is also encouraging return patronage and hopefully some brand loyalty in the process.
If you prefer print, there are certain hotel chains that provide a similar service. Very recently I stayed overnight at the lovely Mark Twain Hotel in Peoria, Illinois. Not only were customers able to borrow books from their impressive library at no cost, but there’s also a DVD collection available from the front desk. My family was delighted to be able to watch the new Avengers movie on a Blu-Ray player already provided in the room.
Where else can readers/listeners take advantage of these alternative little libraries? Let us know and we will try to pass along the goodwill.
As you’re filling in your shiny new calendar for 2013, please be sure to include the dates for the Second Tuesday Book Discussion Groups. All adults are invited! Led by a member of the Library’s Readers Services staff, these groups meet monthly in the Bisbee Conference Room off the main lobby from either 10:00 to 11:15 a.m. or 7:00 to 8:15 p.m.
Bookmarks are available at the Readers Services Desk listing the selected titles for the year, or online from our “Books” tab. Click here for more information.
Our first discussion will be held on January 8. The titles for the morning group include: In the Sea There are Crocodiles: Based on the True Story of Enaiatollah Akbari by Fabio Geda . . .
and for the evening group, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. Come share in a lively discussion!
Happy New Year and Happy Reading!
If you haven’t already read The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien (the prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy), there’s still time before the U.S. movie premiere on December 14. Along with the novel itself, the Library has a terrific collection of companion guides that will satisfy your Middle-Earth Mania:
The Art of the Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull
A Hobbit Journey: Discovering the Enchantment of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-Earth
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey: Visual Companion
The Hobbit and Philosophy: For When You’ve Lost Your Dwarves, Your Wizard, and Your Way
Gregory Bassham and Eric Bronson, Editors
This list is just a sampling of the works inspired by Tolkien. For more suggestions or if you’d like to reserve one of the Lord of the Rings epic films on DVD, please search the Library’s online catalog or contact the Readers Services or Reference Desks.
From The Lord of the Rings, here is Bilbo’s verse warning of winter, found in the chapter called ‘The Ring Goes South.’
When winter first begins to bite
and stones crack in the frosty night,
when pools are black and trees are bare,
’tis evil in the Wild to fare.
But that I am afraid will be just your luck.
Find more “Hobbit” quotes at AllGreatQuotes.com.
Have you ever appreciated someone’s creative idea and then thought “Why didn’t I think of that?” That’s how I felt when I saw this unique headboard:
A library patron recently shared the website www.recyclart.org with me–who knew that so much beauty could come from such everyday items? Enter “books” in the search box located at the upper right-hand corner of the screen, then follow the links. You’ll find designs for structures such as walls, houses (including an igloo), a Christmas tree, planters, coat hooks, and even a purse. Amazing! Now if I could just learn to quilt in order to finish off the look…