Read and Reread all the Harry Potter books? Have no fear... Your Library is here...to recommend...
Janet, Erica, and I had the happiest of experiences attending the National Book Festival in Washington D.C. on Saturday. The annual festival, now in its eighth year, is a day-long event and is a friendly and fun attraction for individuals and families. Despite the oppressive and threatening weather, thousands showed up on the Mall. We had a chance to talk with publishers, publicists, and authors. We chatted with Brad Meltzer (who'd been here to speak at the Library just a few days before), Pauline Frommer, and Philippa Gregory. We were also, as you can see, thisclose to Tiki Barber and Janet asked him a question during the press event.
It was a terrific event...unmarred...though may I say one more thing about the weather? See the photos below? I want to know how Philippa, Erica, and Brad appear untouched by the ravages of the awful, sticky day!
When New York Times reporter Lily Koppel came into possession of a crumbling 75 year old diary rescued from an Upper West Side dumpster, little did she know that it would change her life. The Red Leather Diary: Reclaiming a Life Through the Pages of a Lost Journal is a remarkable story in many ways and Lily will be here at the Library this Thursday, October 2nd at 7 p.m. to talk about it.
The diary is one that was kept by Florence Wolfson during the years 1929-34...5 years in the life of a privileged young woman (beginning at age 14). Through the pages of the diary, Lily became acquainted with a New York City of another time, and of even greater significance, she "met" Florence. The entries are filled with sophisticated musings, cultural observations, teenage crushes, love affairs...literary and emotional adventures and journeys. It's candid and frank, as a diary should be and what would be the chances of locating the author of the diary??? Well, Lily hired a private detective, reunited diary and diarist, and she emerges with a beautiful and full story, and a friend. Through her intimate conversations with Florence, at age 90, the brief diary entries spring to life.
Personal photographs are included, and the young woman in the pictures is unmistakably the modern, adventurous girl from the diary.
Come and join us Thursday evening and meet Lily Koppel and learn more about The Red Leather Diary. A book signing will follow the presentation and books will be available for purchase.
Refreshments will be served.
Hope to see you there! In the meantime, to listen to a brief interview with the author, click here.
We are so excited.
Brad Meltzer, the author of The Book of Lies will be here on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. It's the same day that his new book debuts at #2 on The New York Times bestseller list (so we know he'll be in a good mood). We've read the book. We've heard him speak. We cannot express more urgently how much we know you'll enjoy this program.
In The Book of Lies, Meltzer poses the question: What does Cain, the world’s first villain, and Superman, the world’s first superhero have in common?
Definitely, a discussion-starter.
This thriller expertly melds the story of the murder of Superman-creator Jerry Siegler's father with a dangerous present-day race to find the world's first murder weapon – that which was used by Cain to kill Abel. It's a bold book; it challenges assumptions about Cain killing Abel, heroes and villains, and Meltzer brings into the story a real murder, that of Mitchell Siegel, the father of Jerry Siegel, who created Superman and these stories are woven together in a fast-paced, fascinating, code-breaking drama. After all, explains Meltzer, it was the murder of his father in a store robbery that led the young Jerry to create a bullet-proof man called Superman.
Janet and I had the chance to talk to Brad last week and it was immediately apparent that he has the ability to engage right away and his enthusiasm is contagious . You can listen to a podcast of that conversation right here. You'll certainly want to hear more, so please join us on Sunday (promptly at 5:30 p.m.) for what's sure to be a memorable event.
There will be a reception and book signing following the presentation and books will be available for purchase.
See you on Sunday!
This shirt (left) is made from corn! Really. And it's really soft.
Starre Vartan, the author of The Eco Chick Guide to Life: How to Be Fabulously Green, was here last night and talked to us about green living. It was a fabulous presentation with many surprises! The self-proclaimed "Eco-Fashionista" really does earn her title. She described the difference between cotton and organic cotton, wool and organic wool, and displayed items made of natural materials such as corn, soy, and bamboo. She also had items to show us which were made from reused materials, including a tote bag made from an old billboard(!) (shown at right).
Starre's done the research and it's all in her new book. It really is a must for anyone looking to make even the smallest eco-friendly change in their personal habits, be it at home, in fashion, or globally.
Brightening up our night tomorrow night, Starre Vartan, the author of The Eco Chick Guide to Life: How to Live Fabulously Green will be here at 7 p.m. to talk about her book.
We know this is going to be a great program. Janet and I spoke with Starre last week, and not only is she knowledgable, she's also interesting, entertaining, and fun.
Please come and join us tomorrow night!
Refreshments will be served.
As summer seems like a distant memory and a new school year begins, I was thinking about the books I read over the past couple of months. Two books stand out so strongly in my mind. They weren't beach reads, but they opened this mother of fours' eyes on the old saying that any child can make a bad choice. The story of Nic's fall into drug addiction - one told from a father's perspective and one from Nic himself - speaks volumes to parents of all teens - those involved in drugs or not. The books are wonderfully written and touched my soul. As one reader said, "a testimonial to the parent/child bond." I, personally, think they are must reads for every parent. Beautiful Boy: a father's journey through his son's meth addiction by David Sheff and Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines by Nic Sheff.
We all know why it is good to read to children under 5 - it helps lay the groundwork for a successful experience in school (and life!). In order for young children to be strong readers, they need to be read to. As kids get older (and busier) it is harder and harder to find time to read those looooooong chapter books. There are a great many benefits to continuing to read to your older children! It contiunes to build their vocubalary, it strengthens their listening skills and most importantly, it provides time for you to bond with your children.
Here are some titles from our collection to help you get started. Remember, everyone has different personal values and your children's maturity levels vary, so we recommend that you read the books yourself before sharing them with your children.
For recommendations of books to read to your baby, toddler or preschooler please go to our First Five Years section for book lists.
Books for School-Age Listeners:
Harold the dog shares a true story of the mysterious happenings in the Monroe household since the arrival of an unusual rabbit named Bunnicula. The Monroes' cat, Chester, who has quite an active imagination, is convinced that the harmless looking bunny is a vampire. Chester observes Bunnicula rousing only at night to get sustenance from vegetables by draining their juices with his tiny fangs! Initially, Harold helps Chester warn the family that the strange white vegetables in their refrigerator are caused by a vampire bunny. Later though, Harold comes to Bunnicula's aid when he discovers that Chester is using garlic to starve his new fluffy friend. The story ends happily when Bunnicula goes on a liquid diet and the Monroes' vegetables are safe.
While sorting through difficulties in her friendship with her neighbor Margaret, eight-year-old Clementine gains several unique hairstyles while also helping her father in his efforts to banish pigeons from the front of their apartment building. This is a funny story of a girl who can't seem to avoid trouble and both bpys and girls will apprecitae the humor. An added bonus - the grownups in this book are actually cool! Follow this up with The Talented Clementine and Clementine's Letter.
After Chester, a cricket, arrives in the Times Square subway station from his native Connecticut via a picnic basket, he takes up residence in the Bellinis' newsstand. There tiny Chester is lucky enough to find three good friends; a little boy named Mario whose parents run the unsuccessful newsstand; a fast-talking Broadway mouse called Tucker; and Tucker's pal, Harry Cat. Between escapades in New York City, the four somehow manage tobring success to the almost bankrupt newsstand.
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. Always a hit with elementary school kids, this book also has some good talking points! Check out the discussion guide on Simon & Shuster's website for some questions and activities to do with your kids.
Mr. Popper, a house painter who dreams of the Polar region, receives a large crate containing a penguin. This is a silly book written in 1938, but a classic and an award winner. Even your younger listeners in Preschool would like this book! Follow it up with an exploration about penguins and their habitats. We've got 63 other books about penguins in our Children's Room! You can also find out more about penguins on Zoobooks - a online animal encyclopedia for kids.
"Boy!" said Ralph to himself, his whiskers quivering with excitement. "Boy, oh boy!" Feeling that this was an important moment in his life, he took hold of the handgrips. They felt good and solid beneath his paws. Yes, this motorcycle was a good machine all right.
A reckless young mouse named Ralph makes friends with a boy in room 215 of the Mountain View Inn and discovers the joys of motorcycling. Follow this up with the Cleary's book Ralph S. Mouse.
Sarah, Plain and Tall is an award winning tale set in the late 19th century. It is about Jacob, a widowed midwestern farmer, and his two children, Anna and Caleb. Jacob has advertised for a wife, but when Sarah arrives, she is homesick for Maine, especially for the ocean which she misses greatly. The children fear that she will not stay, and when she goes off to town alone, young Caleb, whose mother died during childbirth, is stricken with the fear that she has gone for good. But she returns with colored pencils to illustrate for them the beauty of Maine, and to explain that, though she misses her home, "the truth of it is I would miss you more." The tale gently explores themes of abandonment, loss and love.
The adventures of Desperaux Tilling, a small mouse of unusual talents, the princess that he loves, the servant girl who longs to be a princess, and a devious rat determined to bring them all to ruin. A modern fairy tale that is sure to delight listeners of all ages. Already read this one? Try another book by this author. Kate DiCamillo is a favorite author of kids and children's librarians alike!
The Tuck family is confronted with an agonizing situation when they discover that a ten-year-old girl and a malicious stranger now share their secret about a spring whose water prevents one from ever growing any older. The story is historical fiction taking place in the 1880s blended with fantasy. Check out the Reading Guide on Scholastic's website for some good questions to ask your kids after you've finished.
Read these Nutmeg books in 2008 and vote in January 2009. Each book is slightly different, so it's like a great big Nutmeg soup with carrots, and peas, oh wait-- I mean fantasy, historical fiction, and mystery, and more! Vote at the Darien Library or in school. Go to the Nutmeg website to learn more.
|Blood on the River by Elisa Carbone||Close Encounters of a Third World Kind by Jennifer J. Stewart|
|Eager by Helen Fox||Free Baseball by Sue Corbett|
|Golden and Grey by Louise Arnold||Gossamer by Lois Lowry Also on Audio|
|MVP by Douglas Evans|
|Three Good Deeds by Vivian Vande Velde|