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The Light in the Ruins

November 20th, 2014 · Book Group, Books, City Library, Events, Main Branch

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For the month of November the Brown Bag Book Club will be reading “The Light in the Ruins” by Chris Bohjalian.  As World War II rages, the Rosati family lives quietly in their ancient Tuscan village.  Their solitude is broken when two Axis soldiers request to see the ancient family burial ground, followed by a takeover of their property by Nazi soldiers.  Fast forward ten years, the war is over, and a serial killer begins to target surviving family members.  Critics describe this book as very intense, with beautiful prose and well-rendered characters.  Join us at lunchtime on Tuesday, November 25th, at 12:15 to discuss this suspenseful page turner and perhaps answer the novel’s main question, “Did they have a choice?”  Don’t forget to bring your lunch! For any questions please contact Information Department at 624-6550 ext. 320.

See you at the book discussion!

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Technology Class – Introduction to eBooks

November 17th, 2014 · Book Group, City Library, Computer Classes, E-Books, Events, Main Branch, News, Technology, Teens, Trustees, West Branch

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Got an e-reader and want to learn more about it? On Thursday afternoon we will be offering a technology class on e-readers! Learn how to download eBooks to your device and how to optimize the eBook services that the library has to offer our library card holders. Bring in your e-reader, tablet, or other device and learn how to download books, manage your account, place holds on the popular items and return them early.  Registration is limited to ten people. To register for this class please call 624-6550 at extension #320 or for more information please contact Carlos at 624-6550 ext. 342.

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Closing Early on Wednesday

November 16th, 2014 · 100th Anniversary, City Library, Main Branch

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The main library will be closing at 3:00 PM on Wednesday, November 19th to prepare for our 100th Anniversary Open House.  Our West Branch will be open normal hours: 12:30-8:30 that day. We thank you for your patronage and will re-open on Thursday, November 20th at 9:30 AM.

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200 Years of Pride and Prejudice

November 14th, 2014 · Books, City Library, Main Branch, West Branch

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Our friends at the New York Public Library recently shared this information on their facebook page and we thought some of you might be interested.

“Monday marked the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice — fun fact: the book’s original title was the questionably sounding First Impressions — and the publishing world is awash in versions of the Jane Austen classic with which you might celebrate the monumental event. After all, Austen’s work has been in the public domain for nearly a century. How do you prefer your Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet star-crossed romance? Here’s a selection of covers from years past up through the present; the good, the bad, the jaw-droppingly gorgeous, and a few that pale in comparison to the book’s contents. First impressions are important! Jane Austen memory lane, let’s take a walk down …” (from The Wire).

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Americanah

November 13th, 2014 · Book Group, Books, Events

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For the month of November, the Thursday evening book group will be reading Americanah by by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie,  the award-winning author of Half of a Yellow Sun.  This is a dazzling new novel: a story of love and race centered around a young man and woman from Nigeria who face difficult choices and challenges in the countries they come to call home.  A young woman from Nigeria leaves behind her home and her first love to start a new life in America, only to find her dreams are not all she expected.  Join us on Thursday, November 13 at 7 PM and share your thoughts and opinions about this book.  For more information please contact Sarah at 624-6560.

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

November 5th, 2014 · Books, City Library, Main Branch, West Branch

I know what you’re thinking…” I’ve just started my Halloween candy, how can we be talking about Christmas!” Well, I guess the publishers are anxious, as we’ve received several Christmas stories this week. So if you’re looking for a head start on getting in the Christmas spirit, check out titles by Nancy Thayer, Debbie Macomber, and Elin Hilderbrand. If you’re searching for a mystery, there’s Jane and the Twelve Days of Christmas (for you Jane Austen fans), and The Nightingale before Christmas (for you Meg Langslow fans).  Or if you’re in the mood for a love story, enjoy A Frontier Christmas and This Holiday Magic. Click here for the complete list. While I won’t say “Let it snow” quite yet, I guess it’s cold enough to curl up in front of a delightful fire with a book! (Some are even available as an eBook.)

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New Religious Books for a New Generation

November 1st, 2014 · Books, City Library, Main Branch, West Branch

pics for august 2014 blog on faith based titles

During a speech at the 29th World Youth Day this year in Vatican City, Pope Francis said, “To you young people I especially entrust the task of restoring solidarity to the heart of human culture…faced with old and new forms of poverty…we have the duty to be alert and thoughtful, avoiding the temptation to remain indifferent.”.  Tall order, huh?  Below are just-in-time titles for all faiths to educate and inspire youth who prepare to organize for change from within their mosque, church, or synagogue.  Topics discussed range from being an advocate for the poor, to ways to increase youth membership.  If all this seems like a daunting task Monty Python appears at the end with their humorous take on religion!

 

1.  From Enemy to Friend: Jewish Wisdom and the Pursuit of Peace.  Rabbi Amy Eilberg.  Orbis Books.  2014.

The latest Gallup Poll shows that younger Americans are more open-minded about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  Rabbi Eilberg states in the introduction to her book that it “presents traditional Jewish concepts of peace and conflict as a spiritual practice that can guide the lives of faithful people seeking to contribute to a more peaceful world”.  In a section titled “Strange Commonalities”, Rabbi Eilberg describes participating in the Compassionate Listening project, where she stays in a Palestinian neighborhood.  After a few days, she was able to go from a fear of Palestinians to realizing all she had in common with them.

 

2.  Faith-Rooted Organizing: Mobilizing the Church in Service to the World.  Rev. Alexia Salvatierra and Peter Heltzel.  IVP Books.  2014.

Are you serious about organizing for change in your town but would like the organizing to center around your faith?  This book will show you how, as you learn such terms as “power mapping”, “moral dialogue”, “The Divine Pitchfork”, and “the other species dynamic”.  Discusses unintended leadership and the concept that all generations need to be included in the change.  This fascinating read also gives creative examples of organizing through jazz, poetry and  liturgies.

 

3.  Hope Rising: How Christians Can End Extreme Poverty in This Generation.  Scott C. Todd Ph.D. Thomas Nelson.  2014.

Todd, the V.P. of Global Advocacy at Compassion International was inspired to write about how to end poverty by his work in helping those suffering from AIDS in Tanzania.  Todd discusses how the various sectors (religious, public, social, business, and Mom’s) can get organized to end poverty.  The book is an inspiring, philosophical plea to all to basically go for it relative to whatever change you wish to see in the world.  He gives example after example of things the next generation is currently doing.  For instance, Todd writes, “…Stephanie was 16 when she worked two jobs cleaning hotel rooms…to…sponsor two children with Compassion [International, the organization founded by Todd].”.

 

4.  Got Religion?: How Churches, Mosques, and Synagogues Can Bring Young People Back.  Naomi Schaefer Riley.  Templeton Press.  2014

Riley describes creative ways in which Jewish, Mormon, Catholic, Evangelical, and Muslim groups can bring millennials (those reaching adulthood after the year 2000) back to these institutions.  Millennials, Riley argues, are turned off from institutions in general, yet are looking for a sense of community.   Different ways faith-based institutions can give more responsibility to those in their 30’s who are prolonging starting a family are discussed.

And finally, Monty Python.  Because, really, any blog about any subject could, in theory, end with some sort of reference to Monty Python (and probably should).  The latest title about the beloved British comedy troupe proves this, as it is called (here goes)….

5.  Everything I Ever Needed to Know About _____* I Learned from Monty Python: *History, Art, Poetry, Communism, Philosophy, the Media, Birth, Death, Religion, Literature, Latin, Transvestites, Botany, the French, Class Systems, Mythology, Fish Slapping, and Many More!  Brian Cogan and Jeff Massey.  Thomas Dunn Books.  2014.

The book is part biography of Monty Python, their influences and background.  It also patiently explains several of those skits you thought you understood.  However for the purposes of this blog, we shall focus on Monty Python’s *unique* treatment of religion.  “Monty Python has long been obsessed with religion” so begins the  Theology/Organized Religion section.  We learn that their religious-themed film,  Life of Brian “is not about Jesus Christ or his teachings”..  According to the authors Cogan and Massey, “They are attacking mindless obedience to any kind of system.”.  So, as you boldly take on the world through faith-based organizing, don’t forget to lighten up with Monty Python’s new book – a thoroughly entertaining and surprisingly educational read.  “Ni!”.

–Amy H

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Halloween Happenings!

October 27th, 2014 · Ages 0-2, Ages 2-3, Ages 4-5, Ages 6-13, Children, City Library, Events, Grades 3-5, Grades K-2, Main Branch, News, West Branch

We will be celebrating Halloween by offering two neat Halloween parties for children.

The West Branch will be celebrating On Wednesday, October 29th at 6:30 PM.  This Halloween Party features a performance by Magic By George packed with fun-filled thrills & spooky magic.  Dress in you Halloween costume and enjoy light refreshments after the show.  All ages are welcome. Please call Sarah at 624-6560 for more information.

The Main Branch Children can celebrate with us on Thursday, October 30th at 6:00 PM.  Children and parents should come in costume and we will be having our annual Halloween Parade!  During the costume parade, we will be trick-or-treating through the library.  Bring a bag for your goodies! Entertainment and refreshments will follow the parade.  This year’s party marks the return of Toe Jam Puppet Band.  Come trick or treat with Toe Jam’s all original Halloween songs & puppets.  You may ask, ‘What Can I be for Halloween?’ ..well…Toe Jam will dress up the kids in kooky Halloween gear and dance some spooky dances like ‘Do the Frankie! (as in Frankenstein).  The show is full of Toe Jammy Monsters and silly string too.  Boo to You!  All ages are welcome.  For more information, please call 624-6550 ext. 328

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Crayon Rocks!

October 27th, 2014 · Ages 6-13, Children, City Library, Grades 3-5, Main Branch

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Our science afternoons continue on Wednesday, October 29th at 4 PM, when we will be working with Crayon Rocks. Come join us as we explore the cycle of rock formation using our crayons as the subjects for our experiments.  We will learn about sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rock formation.  So plan to put on your lab coats and explore the world of geology with us.  We will do some simple experiments and we may also have an Halloween surprise in store.  This program is best for children in grades 1-5.  Registration is required as space is limited.  For more information and to register, please call David at 624-6550 ext. 328.

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Introduction to Microsoft Word 2010

October 25th, 2014 · City Library, Computer Classes, Events, Main Branch

thLearn the basics of Microsoft Word 2010 an essential school or employment skill.  We will create and save a file, learn basic functions such as copy/paste, tabbing and setting margins and have fun with enhancements (bold, italic, font size, and font color) - seating is limited to 12, so sign up is requested.  Join us on Tuesday, October 28, 2014 in the Winchell Room for this fun, hands on class. For more information contact Amy Hanmer at 624-6550 x 346.

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