30 June 2009

Newsweek promotes reading

Thank you to Newsweek, July 13, 2009, with the headline "What to Read Now" and a multiple article feature on books and reading.
Gladly, the feature on books took precidence over the articles on Michael Jackson.
What to Read Now. And Why

See also their website.

Newsweek's Top 100 Books: The Meta-List

27 June 2009

Sarah Palin = the sexy librarian look

Don't take my word for it. It was in the Weekly World News, so we know it is true.

"what witnesses described as 'a sexy librarian '"

24 June 2009

Cat in the Hat

The Cat in the Hat visited the Mary Lou Johnson Hardin County Library to kick off the Summer Reading Program.

22 June 2009

Open letter to the Governor

Dear Governor Strickland:
I would like you to know how much my family values our local library. In your statement about budget cuts you emphasized that programs that serve the young, the disabled, and the elderly would be the last programs to be cut. Local libraries, unlike other agencies, serve ALL THREE of these populations. On a hot summer day such as this, my public library has children coming in for summer reading, mentally challenged and ill and physically challenged patrons coming to use the computers, and frail senior citizens coming for the air conditioning.
Today I returned a number of phonics books that my son was using to practice learning to read and a book about a chicken that my other children enjoyed having read to them. I also returned two music CD’s and one DVD. If the proposed library budgets cuts go through, these populations will not have the opportunities that they had today, Monday, 22 June 2009, at the public library.
Please know that this Ohio family values our People’s University.

Shawna Woodard

Proposed State Budget Slashes Libraries' Monies by 50%


There are some interesting comments on the DDN website as a follow up to this article.

18 June 2009

Disney Pixar's Up!

I loved the movie Up! and I highly recommend it to audiences of all ages BUT I could not help but cringe when Ellie said she had a picture because she tore it out of a library book! This same picture that she tore out of a library book was stored in her scrapbook for the next 60 or so years.

13 June 2009

good pseudonym

I have not read this series of books and my library doesn't own them, but the titles and description are rather fascinating. Maybe I will get around to reading them someday. They are British. Maybe I can get a certain person I know that works at a Natural History Museum to read them and give a review. This book was featured on today's Books-a-Million calendar (Saturday, June 13, 2009).
I am not certain who the real authors are. One source says McSweeney, but not a first name. Another source says Dave Eggers.

The retro covers add to the mystique.

Authors: Doris Haggis-on-Whey and Benny Haggis-on-Whey.

Series: Haggis-on-Whey World of Unbelievable Brilliance

volume 1. Your Disgusting Head

volume 2. Giraffes? Giraffes!

volume 3. Animals of the Ocean, in Particular the Giant Squid
volume 4. Cold Fusion
One reviewer warns not to let students quote these facts in reports as their veracity is suspect.

08 June 2009

library joke

Heard on Night Court:
Since she had no other weapon, she beat him over the head with an almanac. How resource-ful!

Did they mean what they said with this title?

Here is a book in our collection:
Wedding and Love Fake Book
Are they faking the Wedding or the Love?

03 June 2009

What's on my Desk June 2009

Catch that Cat! by Cari Meister and David Brooks. Ages 2-3. DONE.
The cat demonstrates prepositions. The only words in the book are prepositions, so it is good for learning these words or very basic reading skills. The cover says "Rookie Reader".

The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins by Dr. Seuss. Ages 4-7.

I have checked this out before, but this time it was because it was "literary hat day" at the library.

Drive by Nathan Clement. Ages 2-3. DONE.

This book has simple picture and simple words to show that Daddy goes to work driving a semi-truck. This will definitely appeal to kids who are into vehicles. The truck even looks like Mack from Disney's Cars.

Ballerina Princess (Step into Reading, Step 2, Reading with Help, Disney Princess) by Melissa Lagonegro and Niall Harding. Ages 2-6. DONE.
Large type and short sentences make this easy reading geared toward girls.

Gipsy Smith: An Autobiography by "Gipsy" Rodney Smith. Adult nonfiction.

I was afraid that this work by and about an English evangelist would be preachy and dry, but it moves along very quickly and is rather accessible. Even though it is copyright 1908 and British, I am having no problems with the language. His childhood stories are just about as interesting as Laura Ingalls Wilder's and the like. Growing up as an English Gypsy he has some interesting stories to tell. Maybe he wrote it to be simplistic to reach the most people he could. He says that about 90 % of all English Gypsies are illiterate, so this may be a factor. He talks about learning to read and write after he became a Christian. He doesn't say how old he was, but he was probably 15-16 because he says he started received the call to preach at 17 and he could not read then.

Smith says that his father became a Christian largely because of Pilgrim's Progress. He writes reverantly about John Bunyan. Literature in action! I suppose some day I should read Pilgrim's Progress...

It is heartwarming to have him quote all these classic Methodist hymns that we still sing in church today.

Pinkalicious and Purplicious by Victoria Kann & Elizabeth Kann. Children's Fiction. Kindergarten through 2nd grade. DONE.

The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins by Dr. Seuss. Children's Fiction. 2nd or 3rd grade reading level. DONE.

The Bug in the Jug Wants a Hug by Brian P. Cleary and Jason Miskimins. for the beginning reader. DONE.

The cover says "a short vowel sounds book" and "sounds like reading, book one". This series of books isn't really novel/chapter-type books at all, but more like fun reading worksheets. They aren't textbooks, but they act like them. The series has rhyming words and funny pictures, so it serves its purpose of making reading fun, but there is no PLOT at all. Each page is its own world. I think it will help kids learn to read, but I hope this kind of book doesn't became too popular. We need books with plots! I hope the illustrator has a fine career. He does a good job with this series. The target audience for these books is narrow - beginning readers, but a very, very important library patronage. If our little patrons don't become readers, they won't be using and supporting the library in the future.

Stop, Drop, and Flop in the Slop, A Short Vowel Sounds Book with Consonant Blends, Sounds Like Reading, Book Two. by Brian P. Cleary and Jason Miskimins. for the beginning reader. DONE.

Nice Mice in the Rice, A Long Vowel Sounds Book, Sounds Like Reading, Book Three. by Brian P. Cleary and Jason Miskimins. for the beginning reader. DONE.

Frail Snail on the Trail, A Long Vowel Sounds Book with Consonant Blends, Sounds Like Reading, Book Four by Brian P. Cleary and Jason Miskimins. for the beginning reader. DONE.
The Thing on the Wing Can Sing, A Short Vowel Sounds Book with Consonant Digraphs, Sounds Like Reading, Book Five. by Brian P. Cleary and Jason Miskimins. for the beginning reader. DONE.
See above for comments on series.
The 6-year-old that is reading these with me keeps asking questions about these one sentence long stories. I will have to encourage him to make up (as Paul Harvey said) the rest of the story.

Tillie Lays an Egg by Terry Golson and Ben Fink. Ages 3-7. DONE.

This is a good book for the most conservative patrons (Mennonites, Amish, Brethren, Hassidic, Muslim, etc) because the hens do what hens do - no personification or anthropomorphizing. They don't talk. They just eat and lay their eggs. That being said, this is an entertaining book for all young audiences with excellent photography utilizing the author's antique toy collection, other collectibles, and a classic Chevy truck. Tillie the hen doesn't lay her eggs in the hen house where she should. That's the whole plot, but don't take my word for it, check it out!

http://www.hencam.com/index.php See the author's chickens!

Where's Spot? by Eric Hill. Children's Fiction, ages 1-3. DONE.

This isn't particularly original. The whole plot is that the mother is looking for her puppy, but it is simply and attractively illustrated and humourous, which explains its lasting appeal. My audience smiled and laughed at what dog mother, Sally, found. The cover gives it the subtitle "the original lift-the-flap book". This book launched a series of Spot books and videos as well.

Disney Princess My Best Friend Is Ariel by Lisa Ann Marsoli. Grades 1-3. DONE.

Fancy Nancy by Jane O'Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser. Ages 4-8. DONE.

Kipper's Snowy Day by Mick Inkpen. Ages 3-5. DONE.
Phonics Friends Amy's Big Race The Sound of Long A by Cecilia Minden and Joanne Meier. Beginning Reader (ages 4-6). DONE.
This series of books has plots. In this one Amy is having a foot race. Will she win? The illustrations are photographs of real girls running. If it didn't say so on the cover, I would not have guessed that this was a phonics book. The story progressed naturally.
Telex from Cuba by Rachel Kushner. Adult fiction. DONE
The author's mother lived in Cuba as a child and this inspired Rachel to write this tale, weaving together the lives of the Americans living in Cuba in the 1950's.

01 June 2009

Rifftrax on libraries

My family downloaded the Rifftrax for "Battlefield Earth" and watched and listened to the commentary this week.

It is an awful movie, but those MST3K guys make it bearable.

There is a part where the aliens show the enslaved human the Colorado Public Library, but they tell him there is nothing that will help him there.

The Rifftrax commentators then go on and on about which novels might be useful in rebuilding human civilization from its post apocalyptic state. They list Danielle Steel and some others as great American novelists. Throughout the movie they discuss L. Ron Hubbard's contributions to literature and religion.


If I can figure out my MP3 recorder, I may post an audio clip on this blog, otherwise you will have to pay your $3.99 to get this laugh.

How Librarians Retire


What should librarians do when they retire?
Become advocates for the library's archives and use the knowledge obtained during that time to educate the local citizenry!
Here Leon Bey, after retiring with more than 30 years at the Dayton Metro Library, has started a walking tour and uses stories and images he encountered at the library's archives to enhance his walks.

We wish you success, Leon. Keep up the good work.
See how they credit the library for the images.

Now I don't know if it was intentional or not, but before I viewed this clip, they showed a commerical for the Greene County Public Library.
I don't know how long the video will be on the Channel 2 website, but the Gem City Walking Tours Website should still be up.