Monday, March 25, 2013

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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Pied Piper calls Musicians

Have you ever noticed how many people in the music industry are writing their memoirs these days?  I don’t know if it’s just a coincidence or just the fact that aging rockers are reaching a certain age and it’s now or never for them, but there have been quite a few books lately.  The thing is, people remember these folks and who’s not interested in reading about celebrities so their popularity remains high.

If you recall, getting ahead of the game a number of years ago was the musician Sting.  His memoir, “Broken music”  was an instant success. Perhaps he set the pace for excellence and others are now just beginning to follow the tune.

The 2010 National Book non-fiction award winner was “Just kids.”  This is singer songwriter Patti Smith’s memoir of her and Robert Mapplethorpe’s life on the streets of New York in the 1960s. Readers will love her poetic reading and find fascination with her life.

Don’t forget to take a look at another amazing story, “Life”, by Keith Richards.  This long awaited autobiography of the Rolling Stones guitarist and vocalist is sure to please.  While the book details drug and sexual experiences it also touches on guitar playing and songwriting.  A similar choice would be Steven Tyler’s “Does the noise in my head bother you: a rock ‘n’ roll memoir.”

The most recent items to hit the bookshelves include the following titles:

Rod: the autobiography by Rod Stewart
Kicking and dreaming: a story of heart, soul and rock and roll by Ann Wilson, Nancy Wilson and Charles R. Cross
Who I am by Pete Townshend
Waging heavy peace by Neil Young
A natural woman: a memoir by Carole King
My cross to bear by Gregg Allman

And other recent biographies to look for include:

Bruce by Peter Carlin
Mick Jagger by Philip Norman

Whoever the musician may be, they each have a story to tell.  Their story will be unlike any other person's, but they all have the same passion …following a tune.  Check out a few items @ your Library.

Image courtesy of Google images.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Cool New Teen Books (and a few Children’s books as well)

 I am a fan of YA literature, so I always like to be aware of what books are coming out soon that I might be interested in or are gaining attention in the news.  One such book is Scarlet by Marissa Meyer.  I read her debut novel, Cinder, last year and was such a fan.  The book was something new and fresh in YA literature, so I was ecstatic when Scarlet was released already this year.  Another book that I read last year and thoroughly enjoyed was the False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen.  The next book in the series is to be published in March and I cannot wait!  These books and more are listed below and all look to be great reads!

Recent Releases -Teen
Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter (Heist Society #3)
Catherine by April Lindner (modern retelling of Wuthering Heights- Jane was awesome!)
Prodigy by Marie Lu (Legend #2)
Scarlet by Marissa Meyer (Lunar Chronicles #2, Cinder was amazing!)
Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger (setting based in Victorian England)
Just One Day by Gayle Forman
Also Known As by Robin Benway (sounds intriguing)

Recent Releases -Children’s
Jinx by Sage Blackwood
Never Say Die by Will Hobbs (love his books!)
Sugar & Spice by Lisa Papademetriou (Confectionately Yours #3)
Hokey Pokey by Jerry Spinelli
Shadow Breakers by Daniel Blythe (looks terrifying- I can’t wait to read it)

Coming in March
Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare (Infernal Devices #3)
Spellcaster by Claudia Gray
How to Lead a Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller
The Runaway King by Jennifer Nielsen (Ascendance Trilogy #2, after The False Prince)
Requiem by Lauren Oliver (Delirium #3)

To Be Released in April & Beyond
The Elite by Kiera Cass (Selection #2)
The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen (always popular)
All I Need by Susan Colasanti
Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo (Grisha Trilogy #2, after Shadow and Bone)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Award-winning Books!

Every January, the American Library Association gives awards to the best children’s and young adult books that were printed in the previous year.  The runners-up are given the title “Honor books”.

The Newbery medal, initiated in 1922, is the oldest children’s book award in the world.  Although it is named after an 18th century British bookseller named John Newbery, this award is given to the most distinguished American children’s book of the year.  The 2013 winner is The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate.  The Newbery honor books are BOMB: The race to build and steal the world's most dangerous weapon by Steve Sheinkin and Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage.

Recognizing that the illustrations are as important as the text in a picture book, in 1938 the ALA began awarding the Caldecott medal to the illustrator of the most outstanding picture book published in America.  The award is named after Randolph Caldecott, a 19th century illustrator known for the action and humor of his illustrations, and is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year.  The winner of the 2013 award is This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen.  Caldecott honor recipients are Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds, Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett, Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger, and One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo.

These two time-honored awards have been joined by some more recent ones.  For example, the Theodor Seuss Geisel award has been given to the author and illustrator of the most outstanding Early Reader since 2006.  It is named after Dr. Seuss of course, who believed that even beginning children’s books should be fun.  This year’s winner is Up, Tall and High! by Ethan Long.  The honors award was received by the following books:  Let’s Go For a Drive! by Mo Willems, Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin, and Rabbit & Robot:  The Sleepover by Cece Bell.

The Michael J. Printz award is given to the best book written for teens.  It is named after a school librarian from Topeka Kansas who had a passion for finding the right book for the right student.  This year’s award went to In Darkness by Nick Lake.  Runners up include:  Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz, Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, and Dodger by Terry Pratchett.

Looking for some great reads? For descriptions of the winners and runners-up of these awards and many others, go to the Assn. for Library Service to Children and the Young Adult Library Services Assn websites.  Great books, audiobooks and videos await you!

Image courtesy of Google images

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

“When life gives you chicken… make soup.”

With the cold winter winds blowing, there is nothing like comfort foods to make you feel warm inside. Now that the bustle of the holidays is behind us, we can settle down into our routines again.  Once again we have a little more time to call our own.  What a perfect opportunity to do some home style cooking.

In her newest cookbook, Martha’s American Food, Martha Stewart celebrates all that is America.  This allows you to travel through America without ever leaving your kitchen.  The book is written according to regions and she has gathered the best recipes to represent foods enjoyed in that region.  A history has been written for each recipe.

I’ve always enjoyed the Cooks Illustrated Magazine with their great recipes and helpful hints.  They do all the work to perfect a recipe and you get the great results.  You can only imagine what their cookbook is like.  The Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook is not only filled with 2,000 recipes from the past 20 years of their magazine history, but it also explains why you have just made the most perfect Snickerdoodles, Farro Risotto, or Chicken Bouillabaise.  Do you like making great meals but don’t like using every pot and pan that you own to make it?  Then you would like The Best One Dish Suppers from Cook’s Illustrated.  Whether cooking for your family or entertaining guests, there are over 180 recipes for simple dinners fit for a king without all the mess.

For meat lovers, Michael Symon’s Carnivore has recipes for every type of domesticated meat (beef, pork, chicken, or lamb) and game meats (venison, pheasant, boar, duck, quail, rabbit, and elk) that you could imagine, as well as side dishes to compliment these dishes.  All the way from Britain, Mark Sargeant shows us in My Kind of Cooking  how to use cheaper cuts of meat and fish to give us results that are as “delicious and tender as prime cuts”.  Cutting back on cost doesn’t mean you have to cut back on flavor.  If you would prefer to concentrate just on fish, you might enjoy Fish: Recipes from the Sea.  A wide range of fish from white, oily, flat, freshwater fish and seafood are covered in this book and are used in 200 Italian home cooked recipes.  There are helpful hints as to how to choose and prepare fish for these simple and authentic recipes.

When you think Italian, one often thinks of pasta.  The cooks from America’s Test Kitchen have updated many standard pasta dishes and made them healthier and easier to make in Pasta Revolution.  Many of the 200 recipes contain only 6 ingredients.  Included in these recipes are ones for Asian noodle dishes.  Speaking of Italian cuisine, have you ever wondered if you could eat all these wonderful Italian dishes and lose weight?  In Now Eat This! Italian, 100 classic Italian recipes such as Cannoli, Mozzarella en Carozza, and Chicken Parmegiana have had their calories reduced, but have maintained their wonderful taste.  There’s nothing worse than when you’re told you have to restrict what you’re eating.  If Chicken Fettucine Alfredo, Sour Cream and Onion Smashed Potatoes, and Red Velvet Cupcakes are on your forbidden list, then you might want to consider Eat More of What You Love.  Each of their 200 recipes for the above mentioned dishes and others are all under 350 calories.

I love to prepare meals using a slow cooker.  Put all of your ingredients together in the morning, go on with the rest of your day, and come home to the smells of a mouth watering meal that’s ready to eat.  It doesn’t get any better than that.  You can either stick with more traditional meals like recipes found in Margaret Fulton Slow Cooking and Fix-It and Forget-It Pink Cookbook or travel the world with recipes from Mediterranean Slow Cooker Cookbook, The French Slow Cooker, The Mexican Slow cooker, and 150 Best Indian, Thai, Vietnamese and More Slow Cooker.

As long as we’re traveling through cooking, it wouldn’t hurt to see what’s new in the line of Jewish cookery.  As with so many other cookbooks these books, The Mile End Cookbook, Helen Nash’s New Kosher Cuisine, and Jerusalem-A Cookbook are a blending of the old with the new to make meals that are both tasty and healthy.  Sprinkled between recipes are tips, memories and traditions.

Up to this point, all of the above mentioned cookbooks have recipes for meat dishes.  We don’t want to forget those who would prefer meatless dishes.  Fix-It and Forget-It Vegetarian Cookbook, The Easy Vegan, Cornelia Guest’s Simple Pleasures, Herbivoracious, and Vegan Indian Cooking contain recipes that won’t disappoint you.  They contain recipes for appetizers, snacks, breakfast dishes, soups, main courses, pasta, salads, and desserts.  They also contain menus and substitution lists. 

For people that are diagnosed with gluten intolerance, cooking can be somewhat of a challenge.  From quick meals to slow cooked meals there are many new cookbooks to help meet this challenge with tasty recipes.  Small Plates and Sweet Treats, Allergy-Friendly Food For Families, The Autism Cookbook, Simply…Gluten-Free Quick Meals, The Gluten Free Table, Everyday Gluten-free Slow Cooking, and The Joy of Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Baking.

For this blog I wanted to list all of our new cookbooks.  As I was working on this I realized that I would not be able to do this.  So this is just a starter list.  You will have to come in and check out all the great new books that we have.  
Happy reading, happy cooking, and bon app├ętit!

***Pictures courtesy of Google images

Friday, December 28, 2012

Abraham Lincoln

Why is Lincoln so popular today?  Of all the books on the Library’s shelves, the one person with the most titles has got to be Abraham Lincoln.  Everyone knows the story of how Lincoln grew up in a log cabin and went on to become perhaps the greatest president. The appeal is universal. Thus anything new, written or recorded about him is guaranteed to be popular.

Take Bill O’Reilly’s book, Killing Lincoln: the shocking assassination that changed America forever. This book came out over a year ago. It’s still on the bestseller’s list and still has Library holds on it.  While it may not be the best book on Lincoln, people still want to read the story.  Steven Spielberg’s new movie, Lincoln, which came out last month, has been attracting large audiences too. I can say I too saw that one. Even President Obama, a Lincoln fan himself, got in the act by hosting a pre-screening of Spielberg’s movie at the White House. Again, the appeal factor is the man himself and his steadfast ideas.

Abraham Lincoln was born February 12, 1809 in one room log cabin in Kentucky.  According to Wikipedia, Lincoln’s father Thomas enjoyed considerable status in Kentucky until he lost all of his land, two 600 acre farms in Kentucky, because of faulty property titles.  The family then moved north across the Ohio River to Perry County which is now Spencer County, Indiana.  Lincoln’s mother Nancy died of milk sickness when he was just nine.  Sarah, Lincoln’s sister, took over the care of him.  Thomas Lincoln remarried a widow, Sarah Bush Johnston, who had three children.  Lincoln became very close to his stepmother.  Life in the frontier was difficult.  Lincoln had little education.  He was mostly self educated and was quite an avid reader.

Fearing a milk sickness outbreak in 1830, the family again moved west where they settled on public land in Macon County, Illinois. Lincoln was at the age when he longed for a better life for himself so he went off to New Salem, IL.  He was hired by a businessman to take goods on a flatboat down to New Orleans.  Here he experienced slavery first hand.  In 1832 he and a partner bought a general store in New Salem.  After a struggle he sold his share of the business.  He began his first political campaign for a seat in the Illinois General Assembly.  He lost that election probably because of his lack of education, powerful friends and money.  In 1834 he won election to the state legislature. He moved to Springfield, IL and went on to study law and became a lawyer.  Lincoln served four successive terms in the Illinois House of Representatives.  In 1846 Lincoln was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for one two-year term and then continued practicing law in Springfield.

In the 1850’s slavery was still legal in the southern states and Lincoln returned to politics opposing the pro-slavery Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854.  Lincoln ran as a Whig for the U.S. Senate seat from Illinois. After leading in the opening rounds his support dwindled. In 1858 he battled Stephen Douglas for a seat in the U.S. Senate, but it turned out be a bitter loss for Lincoln. In 1860 Lincoln was nominated and elected the 16th President of the United States and re-elected in 1864.  Lincoln was married to Mary Todd Lincoln and had four sons. Lincoln died on April 15, 1865.

Look for these new and exciting titles about Lincoln
Lincoln on war edited by Harold Holzer
Abraham Lincoln and Horace Greeley by Gregory A. Borchard
The dogs of war, 1861 by Emory M. Thomas
Presidental avenger:  Boston Corbett by Robert K. Lieding, Sr.

In novels
The Lincoln conspiracy: a novel by Timothy L. O’Brien


Children’s books
Abraham Lincoln by Marion Dane Bauer
Abraham Lincoln by Mary Pope Osborne

Select more titles about Lincoln @your Library.

Picture courtesy of Google images

Monday, December 17, 2012

The Ins and Outs of Holiday Entertaining

The holiday season is here which means you might be entertaining house guests from out of town or throwing a party for friends, family or coworkers.  If you are looking for some ideas on themes, foods or simple tips on making your party successful, look no further than the Frank L. Weyenberg Library.  We carry plenty of entertaining books, cookbooks and so on to make your Holiday Season successful and hopefully stress free.

Entertaining can be both fun and sometimes stressful.  However, with the right direction, it is possible to minimize the stress and enjoy just enjoy the time with friends and family.  Check out these books for tips and tricks:

It seems like this time of year everyone is looking for that perfect recipe to make the holidays great.  Whether it is just a desert or a full course meal, playing with new recipes can be fun and rewarding.  Check out these Cook Books to try something new at your Holiday gathering:

Sometimes entertaining includes providing activities for your guests.  If you are looking to entertain your guests over a weekend you might be interested in borrowing these holiday movies taken from one of our earlier blog posts:
A Charlie Brown Christmas
A Christmas Story
Frosty the Snowman
Home Alone
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
It’s a Wonderful Life
Miracle on 34th Street
The Muppet Christmas Carol
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
The Polar Express
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
A White Christmas

**Image courtesy of Google Images.