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Library News for the week of October 30, 2013

The Washington Post says that NIGHT FILM is “Maniacally clever . . . Dastardly fun . . . You’ll miss your subway stop, let dinner burn and start sleeping with the lights on.” “On a damp October night, beautiful young Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive cult-horror-film director Stanislas Cordova—a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years. For McGrath, another death connected to this seemingly cursed family dynasty seems more than just a coincidence. Though much has been written about Cordova’s dark and unsettling films, very little is known about the man himself. Driven by revenge, curiosity, and a need for the truth, McGrath, with the aid of two strangers, is drawn deeper and deeper into Cordova’s eerie, hypnotic world. The last time he got close to exposing the director, McGrath lost his marriage and his career. This time he might lose even more. Night Film, the gorgeously written, spellbinding new novel by the dazzlingly inventive Marisha Pessl, will hold you in suspense until you turn the final page.”  (Book synopsis from the publisher, Random House Publishing Group. Kirkus Reviews says, “An inventive–if brooding, strange and creepy–adventure in literary terror. Think Edgar Allan Poe and Stephen King meet Guillermo del Toro as channeled by Klaus Kinski. In her sophomore effort, Pessl (Special Topics in Calamity Physics, 2006) hits the scary ground running.”

Kirkus Reviews calls A HOUSE IN THE SKY a “vivid, gut-wrenching, beautifully written, memorable book.” “As a child, Amanda Lindhout escaped a violent household by paging through issues of National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. At the age of nineteen, working as a cocktail waitress in Calgary, Alberta, she began saving her tips so she could travel the globe. Aspiring to understand the world and live a significant life, she backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and emboldened by each adventure, went on to Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a television reporter. And then, in August 2008, she traveled to Somalia—“the most dangerous place on earth.” On her fourth day, she was abducted by a group of masked men along a dusty road. Held hostage for 460 days, Amanda converts to Islam as a survival tactic, receives “wife lessons” from one of her captors, and risks a daring escape. Moved between a series of abandoned houses in the desert, she survives on memory—every lush detail of the world she experienced in her life before captivity—and on strategy, fortitude, and hope. When she is most desperate, she visits a house in the sky, high above the woman kept in chains, in the dark, being tortured. Vivid and suspenseful, as artfully written as the finest novel, A House in the Sky is the searingly intimate story of an intrepid young woman and her search for compassion in the face of unimaginable adversity.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Scribner.) Booklist says, “Writing with immediacy and urgency, Lindhout and Corbett recount the horrific ordeal in crisp, frank, evocative prose. But what readers will walk away with is an admiration for Lindhout’s deep reserves of courage under unimaginable circumstances.”

Before you head over to the nice new Kwik Trip store, buy a Kwik Trip scrip card from the library.  You can use it to buy gas or anything in the store and the library will earn 10% of the value of each card you purchase!  What an easy way to support your library without spending a single extra cent!

Library News for the week of October 23, 2013

Kirkus Reviews calls THE ROSIE PROJECT a “sparkling, laugh-out-loud novel.”  “Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially challenged professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. And so, in the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs the Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.  Rosie Jarman is all these things. She also is strangely beguiling, fiery, and intelligent. And while Don quickly disqualifies her as a candidate for the Wife Project, as a DNA expert Don is particularly suited to help Rosie on her own quest: identifying her biological father. When an unlikely relationship develops as they collaborate on the Father Project, Don is forced to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that, despite your best scientific efforts, you don’t find love, it finds you. Arrestingly endearing and entirely unconventional, Graeme Simsion’s distinctive debut will resonate with anyone who has ever tenaciously gone after life or love in the face of great challenges. The Rosie Project is a rare find: a book that restores our optimism in the power of human connection.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Simon & Schuster.) Booklist says, “Funny, touching, and hard to put down, The Rosie Project is certain to entertain even as readers delve into deep themes. For a book about a logic-based quest for love, it has a lot of heart….[an] immensely enjoyable novel.”

New in nonfiction is MINNESOTA TREASURES: STORIES BEHIND THE STATE’S HISTORIC PLACES. “Why should we save the historic buildings in our cities and towns? What makes a building a historic landmark? What can we uncover of Minnesota’s history by studying its historic structures? What do buildings and sites tell us about time and place, experience and memory, people and their needs? Historian Denis P. Gardner beckons us to learn about the profound value of historic buildings and places in this engaging collection of essays. His stories, accompanied by gorgeous color photographs, tell the very human side of our state’s history by showcasing some of the state’s gathering places, houses, commercial hubs, industrial and agricultural properties, and Native American sites that hold our collective history. Read about Guri Endreson, a Norwegian immigrant widow who defiantly returned to the family’s small log cabin near Willmar after her husband and son were killed in the U.S.-Dakota War–and see the evocative photograph of the log structure as it stands today. Or hear of the second-most famous aviator in Minnesota history, Bernard H. Pietenpol, who built airplanes in his garage/workshop in the heart of Cherry Grove, and see one of his prototype airplanes preserved for display. Learn of the wood-framed Classical Hennepin County house of one of Minnesota’s most prominent African Americans, Lena Olive Smith, and hear how Smith, the first African American women licensed to practice law in Minnesota, was a tireless crusader for equal rights. As Richard Moe, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, writes in the foreword to Minnesota Treasures: These places help us understand who we are . . . they constitute a unique family portrait of us. And what a colorful, complex, endlessly fascinating portrait it is. In their remarkable variety, the places in Minnesota Treasures may at first glance appear to be a random collection of unrelated artifacts–but in fact they share one very important trait in common: They are all worth saving. Just as we learn about our fathers and mothers–who they were, what they believed, how they lived–from the buildings they left for us, our children will learn about us in the same way.” (Synopsis from the publisher, Minnesota Historical Society Press.) Charles W. Nelson, Minnesota State Historical Architect says, “What a marvelous book! Gardner’s work has a human, almost spiritual perspective. Anyone whose curiosity has been aroused by an old homestead, a walk through a small town, or a feature on the landscape, quickly realizes that there to be discovered is an essence that transcends mere physical attributes. Minnesota Treasures celebrates these discoveries as the spirit of a heritage that is not only all around us, but is a part of us: a treasure we cannot afford to lose.”

Our annual Pumpkin Carving Workshop will be held on Saturday, October 26th beginning at 12:30pm! Bring your own pumpkin and carving tools. We’ll provide a variety of patterns that you can use. This is a free, very informal workshop for carvers of all ages and levels of experience, but young children must be accompanied by an adult.  Because of time constraints, many have found that it works much better to scrape out their pumpkins before coming to the workshop so that they can get right to work carving. Spooky treats will be served.  Join us!

Library News for the week of October 16, 2013

Library Journal gives C.J. Box’s newest novel A FORCE OF NATURE a starred review and says, ““Absolutely riveting…This is the best Box I’ve ever read, and I’ve read them all.”  “In 1995, Nate Romanowski was in a Special Forces unit abroad when his commander, John Nemecek, did something terrible. Now the high-ranking government official and cold-blooded sociopath is determined to eliminate anyone who knows about it—like Nate, who’s hidden himself away in Wyoming’s Bighorn Mountains. And he knows exactly how Nemecek will do it—by targeting Nate’s friends to draw him out. That includes his friend, game warden Joe Pickett, and Pickett’s entire family. The only way to fight back is outside the law. Nate knows he can do it, but he isn’t sure about his straight-arrow friend. And all their lives could depend on it.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Penguin Group (USA).) New York Times Book Review says, “A rush…an excellent wilderness adventure…a violent, bloody, and quite satisfying thriller.”

Barnes and Noble states that THE NEW MIDWESTERN TABLE “serves both as an inviting heartland food history and the repository of 200 recipes that would taste good in any region of the world.”  “Amy Thielen grew up in rural northern Minnesota, waiting in lines for potluck buffets amid loops of smoked sausages from her uncle’s meat market and in the company of women who could put up jelly without a recipe. She spent years cooking in some of New York City’s best restaurants, but it took moving home in 2008 for her to rediscover the wealth and diversity of the Midwestern table, and to witness its reinvention. The New Midwestern Table reveals all that she’s come to love—and learn—about the foods of her native Midwest, through updated classic recipes and numerous encounters with spirited home cooks and some of the region’s most passionate food producers. With 150 color photographs capturing these fresh-from-the-land dishes and the striking beauty of the terrain, this cookbook will cause any home cook to fall in love with the captivating flavors of the American heartland.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Crown Publishing Group.) Andrew Zimmern says, “Beautifully written, culturally meaningful, and loaded with brilliant cookery, The New Midwestern Table dances on a wire with one foot in the twenty-first century and the other in the nineteenth.”

Join us for our annual Pumpkin Carving Workshop on Saturday, October 26th beginning at 12:30pm and you will be sure to have your pumpkin masterpiece ready for the holiday! Bring your own pumpkin and carving tools and we’ll provide a variety of patterns that you can use. This is a free, very informal workshop for carvers of all ages and levels of experience, but young children must be accompanied by an adult.  Because of time constraints, many have found that it works much better to scrape out their pumpkins before coming to the workshop so that they can get right to work carving.  Intricate carving takes a lot of time! Spooky treats will be served.  Please join us!  It is fun and everyone always walks out with a truly impressive work of pumpkin art!

Library News for the week of October 9, 2013

Kirkus Reviews says that CUCKOO”S CALLING is a “quick, fun read” and that it “works well on every level.” “Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, thelegendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man. You may think you know detectives, but you’ve never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you’ve never seen them under an investigation like this.”  (Book synopsis from the publisher,  Little, Brown & Company.) Library Journal says, “Laden with plenty of twists and distractions, this debut ensures that readers will be puzzled and totally engrossed for quite a spell. Galbraith’s take on contemporary celebrity obsession makes for a grand beach read.” This book is also available in unabridged CD and downloadable audio.

New in nonfiction is THE WITNESS WORE RED. Publishers Weekly says, “Those lulled into a vague tolerance for polygamy as depicted on reality TV will be shocked by the author’s harrowing account of her years growing up in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.” “THE WITNESS WORE RED is a gripping account of one woman’s struggle to escape the perverse embrace of religious fanaticism and sexual slavery, and a courageous story of hope and transformation. Rebecca Musser grew up in fear, concealing her family’s polygamous lifestyle from the ‘dangerous’ outside world. Covered head-to-toe in strict, modest clothing, she received a rigorous education at Alta Academy, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints’ school headed by Warren Jeffs. Always seeking to be an obedient Priesthood girl, in her teens she became the nineteenth wife of her people’s prophet: 85-year-old Rulon Jeffs, Warren’s father. Finally sickened by the abuse she suffered and saw around her, she pulled off a daring escape and sought to build a new life and family. The church, however, had a way of pulling her back in-and by 2007, Rebecca had no choice but to take the witness stand against the new prophet of the FLDS in order to protect her little sisters and other young girls from being forced to marry at shockingly young ages. The following year, Rebecca and the rest of the world watched as a team of Texas Rangers raided the Yearning for Zion Ranch, a stronghold of the FLDS. Rebecca’s subsequent testimony would reveal the horrific secrets taking place behind closed doors of the temple, sending their leaders to prison for years, and Warren Jeffs for life.”  (Book synopsis from the publisher, Grand Central Publishing.) Kirkus Reviews says, “… the book speaks to the ways isolation, fear and secrecy can shelter insidious abuses until someone has the courage to step forward as a witness.”

Do you know about the library’s facebook pages yet?  Look up “Chatfield Public Library” and “Chatfield Public Library Teens” and “Like” us!  You’ll then be among the first to hear about new books, programs, and other good library stuff!

Library News for the week of October 2, 2013

Check out Mary Simses’ debut novel THE IRRESISTIBLE BLUEBERRY BAKESHOP & CAFÉKirkus Reviews says, “Simses’ portrait of small-town Maine is enchanting, a place for a reader to linger….”  “A high-powered Manhattan attorney finds love, purpose, and the promise of a simpler life in her grandmother’s hometown. Ellen Branford is going to fulfill her grandmother’s dying wish—to find the hometown boy she once loved, and give him her last letter. Ellen leaves Manhattan and her Kennedy-esque fiance for Beacon, Maine. What should be a one-day trip is quickly complicated when she almost drowns in the chilly bay and is saved by a local carpenter. The rescue turns Ellen into something of a local celebrity, which may or may not help her unravel the past her grandmother labored to keep hidden. As she learns about her grandmother and herself, it becomes clear that a 24-hour visit to Beacon may never be enough. THE IRRESISTIBLE BLUEBERRY BAKESHOP & CAFE is a warm and delicious debut about the power of a simpler life.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Little, Brown & Company.)  Booklist says, “This charming, tender first novel emphasizes the power of simple pleasures, comfort food, and undeniable chemistry…. a delightful beach read.”

Come check out the beautiful and incredibly enticing BEEKMAN 1802 HEIRLOOM DESSERT COOKBOOK. Booklist says, “Organized by seasons, these desserts offer plenty of sweet satisfaction.”  Dr. Brent Ridge and New York Times bestselling author Josh Kilmer-Purcell are not your average couple: The two Manhattanites left their big city lives behind, and found themselves living in bucolic Sharon Springs, New York, where they became “accidental goat farmers.” But what began as a way to reconnect with their own style of modern country living soon exploded into a wildly successful brand, Beekman 1802, named after their historic home. Brent and Josh are now world-renowned for producing everything from magnificent handcrafted goat’s milk soaps to artisanal Blaak cheese, and now, with The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook, they’re bringing their special vintage-modern touch to classic, remarkable recipes bound to become family favorites year after year. The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook will show off the delicious and decadent recipes that the Beekman Boys have collected from across the generations of their family, from Brent’s grandmother’s Fourth of July Fruitcake to Josh’s mother’s Hot Chocolate Dumplings. Each recipe will be accompanied by a personal memory from the authors or a story about how that recipe came to be. With eco-conscious and vintage-oriented food production gaining traction as a major culinary trend, this beautiful package will reel in readers, whether they’re nostalgic for some classic Americana in their kitchen or just hankering for the perfect Blackberry Betty recipe.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Rodale Press, Inc.) Publishers Weekly says, “The Beekman boys have captured the essence of modern country living in these nostalgic heritage desserts.”

Don’t miss our free author and book signing event at the Chatfield Center for the Arts this Thursday, Oct. 3rd at 7:00pm! This exciting event features MN Book Award winning author, Atina Diffley, author of TURN HERE, SWEET CORN: ORGANIC FARMING WORKS. Books will be available for purchase and signing and refreshments will be provided.  This program, hosted by the Chatfield Public Library and Friends, was funded in part or in whole with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.  Go to www.chatfieldpubliclibrary.org for more details.  Please join us!

Library News for the week of September 25, 2013

Publishers Weekly says that Jhumpa Lahiri’s new novel, THE LOWLAND, is a “formidable and beautiful book.”  “From the Pulitzer Prize-winning, best-selling author of The Namesake comes an extraordinary new novel, set in both India and America, that expands the scope and range of one of our most dazzling storytellers: a tale of two brothers bound by tragedy, a fiercely brilliant woman haunted by her past, a country torn by revolution, and a love that lasts long past death. Born just fifteen months apart, Subhash and Udayan Mitra are inseparable brothers, one often mistaken for the other in the Calcutta neighborhood where they grow up.  But they are also opposites, with gravely different futures ahead. It is the 1960s, and Udayan—charismatic and impulsive—finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty; he will give everything, risk all, for what he believes. Subhash, the dutiful son, does not share his brother’s political passion; he leaves home to pursue a life of scientific research in a quiet, coastal corner of America. But when Subhash learns what happened to his brother in the lowland outside their family’s home, he goes back to India, hoping to pick up the pieces of a shattered family, and to heal the wounds Udayan left behind—including those seared in the heart of his brother’s wife. Masterly suspenseful, sweeping, piercingly intimate, The Lowland is a work of great beauty and complex emotion; an engrossing family saga and a story steeped in history that spans generations and geographies with seamless authenticity. It is Jhumpa Lahiri at the height of her considerable powers.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.)  Booklist says, “Renowned for her exquisite prose and penetrating insights, Lahiri attains new heights of artistry—flawless transparency, immersive intimacy with characters and place—in her spellbinding fourth book and second novel, a magnificent, universal, and indelible work of literature. An absolute triumph.…Pulitzer Prize winner Lahiri’s standing increases with each book, and this is her most compelling yet….”

 

Thanks to some very generous donations and excellent suggestions from Kelly Poshusta, our library is collecting quite an extensive collection of beekeeping and honey-related books!  Come check them out!  “In THE BACKYARD BEEKEEPER’S HONEY HANDBOOK, seasoned expert, Kim Flottum explains the process of moving honey from beehive to honey house and how to reveal and extract it so none of the finer aromas, tastes, or colors are bruised, burned, or broken.  You’ll learn which crops produce the best tasting honey and which to avoid. It also provides instructions for careful, considerate storing, and focuses on the best ways to produce, harvest, and use the honey. Unlike the harsh industrial methods used by beekeepers who harvest a season’s blend just once a year, The Backyard Beekeeper’s Honey Handbook is idea for those who want to follow a simpler path to create an unforgettable product. You’ll be introduced to the amazing varieties of honey and be provided with a detailed illustrated guide to honey plants along with their bloom dates and honey flows. The full-color, stunning photographs illustrate and exalt the process. This book will help you create an amazing honey crop. You’ll find dozens of delicious, healthy recipes featuring artisan and varietal honey for both sweet and savory dishes. The recipes range from dips to dressings to salads and vegetables to entrees and desserts featuring your own honey.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, MBI Publishing Company.) Ariel Tilson, from The Herb Companion says, “From extracting and storing to selling and cooking, Kim Flottum gives detailed and beautifully illustrated directions that will help you produce the best honey possible. Flottum’s honey-infused recipes are equally as inspiring as his invaluable advice….”
Library News for the week of September 18, 2013

Discover mystery writer Louise Penny and her Armand Gamache series.  Check out HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN today!  Publishers Weekly says, “Complex characterizations and sophisticated plotting distinguish Agatha-winner Penny’s masterful ninth novel.”  “Christmas is approaching, and in Québec it’s a time of dazzling snowfalls, bright lights, and gatherings with friends in front of blazing hearths. But shadows are falling on the usually festive season for Chief Inspector Armand Gamache. Most of his best agents have left the Homicide Department, his old friend and lieutenant Jean-Guy Beauvoir hasn’t spoken to him in months, and hostile forces are lining up against him. When Gamache receives a message from Myrna Landers that a longtime friend has failed to arrive for Christmas in the village of Three Pines, he welcomes the chance to get away from the city. Mystified by Myrna’s reluctance to reveal her friend’s name, Gamache soon discovers the missing woman was once one of the most famous people not just in North America, but in the world, and now goes unrecognized by virtually everyone except the mad, brilliant poet Ruth Zardo. As events come to a head, Gamache is drawn ever deeper into the world of Three Pines. Increasingly, he is not only investigating the disappearance of Myrna’s friend but also seeking a safe place for himself and his still-loyal colleagues. Is there peace to be found even in Three Pines, and at what cost to Gamache and the people he holds dear?” (Book synopsis from the publisher, St. Martin’s Press.) Booklist says, “Another bravura performance from an author who has reinvented the village mystery as profoundly as Dashiell Hammett transformed the detective novel.”

Library Journal says that LEAN IN is a “lively book on a topic relevant to all working women as well as the men they work with (and for).”  “Thirty years after women became 50 percent of the college graduates in the United States, men still hold the vast majority of leadership positions in government and industry. This means that women’s voices are still not heard equally in the decisions that most affect our lives. In Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg examines why women’s progress in achieving leadership roles has stalled, explains the root causes, and offers compelling, commonsense solutions that can empower women to achieve their full potential. Sandberg is the chief operating officer of Facebook and is ranked on Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business and as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World. In 2010, she gave an electrifying TEDTalk in which she described how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. Her talk, which became a phenomenon and has been viewed more than two million times, encouraged women to ‘sit at the table,’ seek challenges, take risks, and pursue their goals with gusto. In Lean In, Sandberg digs deeper into these issues, combining personal anecdotes, hard data, and compelling research to cut through the layers of ambiguity and bias surrounding the lives and choices of working women. She recounts her own decisions, mistakes, and daily struggles to make the right choices for herself, her career, and her family. She provides practical advice on negotiation techniques, mentorship, and building a satisfying career, urging women to set boundaries and to abandon the myth of ‘having it all.’  She describes specific steps women can take to combine professional achievement with personal fulfillment and demonstrates how men can benefit by supporting women in the workplace and at home. Written with both humor and wisdom, Sandberg’s book is an inspiring call to action and a blueprint for individual growth. Lean In is destined to change the conversation from what women can’t do to what they can.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.) Condoleezza Rice says, “I nodded my head in agreement and laughed out loud as I read these pages. Lean In is a superb, witty, candid, and meaningful read for women (and men) of all generations.”

Library News for the week of September 11, 2013

The Boston Globe declares that SEATING ARRANGEMENTS is “one of those rare debut novels that neither forsakes plot for language nor language for plot. It is gratifying on every scale.” “The Van Meters have gathered at their family retreat on the island of Waskeke to celebrate the marriage of daughter Daphne to the impeccably appropriate Greyson Duff. The weekend is full of champagne, salt air and practiced bonhomie, but long-buried discontent and simmering lust stir beneath the surface. Winn Van Meter, father of the bride, is not having a good time. Barred from the exclusive social club he’s been eyeing since birth, he’s also tormented by an inappropriate crush on Daphne’s beguiling bridesmaid, Agatha, and the fear that his daughter, Livia—recently heartbroken by the son of his greatest rival—is a too-ready target for the wiles of Greyson’s best man. When old resentments, a beached whale and an escaped lobster are added to the mix, the wedding that should have gone off with military precision threatens to become a spectacle of misbehavior.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.) The Washington Post calls this book a “sophisticated summer romp…Shipstead’s weave of wit and observation continually delights.”

Booklist  describes THE WORLD’S STRONGEST LIBRARIAN as an “excellent and uplifting story on accepting and coping with lifelong disabilities.” “Josh Hanagarne couldn’t be invisible if he tried. Although he wouldn’t officially be diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome until his freshman year of high school, Josh was six years old and onstage in a school Thanksgiving play when he first began exhibiting symptoms. By the time he was twenty, the young Mormon had reached his towering adult height of 6’7” when—while serving on a mission for the Church of Latter Day Saints—his Tourette’s tics escalated to nightmarish levels. Determined to conquer his affliction, Josh underwent everything from quack remedies to lethargy-inducing drug regimes to Botox injections that paralyzed his vocal cords and left him voiceless for three years. Undeterred, Josh persevered to marry and earn a degree in Library Science. At last, an eccentric, autistic strongman—and former Air Force Tech Sergeant and guard at an Iraqi prison—taught Josh how to ‘throttle’ his tics into submission through strength-training. Today, Josh is a librarian in the main branch of Salt Lake City’s public library and founder of a popular blog about books and weight lifting—and the proud father of four-year-old Max, who has already started to show his own symptoms of Tourette’s. The World’s Strongest Librarian illuminates the mysteries of this little-understood disorder, as well as the very different worlds of strongman training and modern libraries. With humor and candor, this unlikely hero traces his journey to overcome his disability— and navigate his wavering Mormon faith—to find love and create a life worth living.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Gotham Books.) Barnes and Noble says, ”Hanagarne’s account of how he bravely overcame his embarrassing Tourette’s tics with strength-training will be the draw for many readers, but with all its entertaining stories, this memoir is far more than just an inspirational tome.”

We just received a really lovely donation of a large amount of gently used children’s DVDs from a generous community member!  Do you have DVDs that are in good shape, and still in their cases, that you no longer want?  Consider sharing them with the whole community by donating them to the library!

Library News for the week of September 4, 2013

Publishers Weekly calls Gail Godwin’s novel FLORA a ”stirring and wondrous novel.”  “Ten-year-old Helen and her summer guardian, Flora, are isolated together in Helen’s decaying family house while her father is doing secret war work in Oak Ridge during the final months of World War II. At three, Helen lost her mother, and the beloved grandmother who raised her has just died. A fiercely imaginative child, Helen is desperate to keep her house intact with all its ghosts and stories. Flora, her late mother’s twenty-two-year-old first cousin, who cries at the drop of a hat, is ardently determined to do her best for Helen. Their relationship and its fallout, played against a backdrop of a lost America, will haunt Helen for the rest of her life. This darkly beautiful novel about a child and a caretaker in isolation evokes shades of The Turn of the Screw and also harks back to Godwin’s memorable novel of growing up The Finishing School. With a house on top of a mountain and a child who may be a bomb that will one day go off, Flora tells a story of love, regret, and the things we can’t undo.” (Book synopsis from the publisher, Bloomsbury USA.)  Library Journal says, “A superbly crafted, stunning novel by three-time National Book Award award finalist Godwin (A Mother and Two Daughters), this is an unforgettable, heartbreaking tale of disappointment, love, and tragedy. Highly recommended.”

Kirkus Reviews says TURN HERE SWEET CORN: ORGANIC FARMING WORKS is an “education on organic farming and its importance, as well as a heartfelt love letter to the land.” “When the hail starts to fall, Atina Diffley doesn’t compare it to golf balls. She’s a farmer. It’s ‘as big as a B-size potato.’ As her bombarded land turns white, she and her husband Martin huddle under a blanket and reminisce: the one-hundred-mile-per-hour winds; the eleven-inch rainfall (‘that broccoli turned out gorgeous’); the hail disaster of 1977. The romance of farming washed away a long time ago, but the love? Never. In telling her story of working the land, coaxing good food from the fertile soil, Atina Diffley reminds us of an ultimate truth: we live in relationships—with the earth, plants and animals, families and communities. A memoir of making these essential relationships work in the face of challenges as natural as weather and as unnatural as corporate politics, her book is a firsthand history of getting in at the ‘ground level’ of organic farming. One of the first certified organic produce farms in the Midwest, the Diffleys’ Gardens of Eagan helped to usher in a new kind of green revolution in the heart of America’s farmland, supplying their roadside stand and a growing number of local food co-ops. This is a story of a world transformed—and reclaimed—one square acre at a time. And yet, after surviving punishing storms and the devastating loss of fifth-generation Diffley family land to suburban development, the Diffleys faced the ultimate challenge: the threat of eminent domain for a crude oil pipeline proposed by one of the largest privately owned companies in the world, notorious polluters Koch Industries. As Atina Diffley tells her David-versus-Goliath tale, she gives readers everything from expert instruction in organic farming to an entrepreneur’s manual on how to grow a business to a legal thriller about battling corporate arrogance to a love story about a single mother falling for a good, big-hearted man.” Publishers Weekly says, “Equal parts anecdote and practical organic farming guide, this book is a powerful testament to the Diffleys’ passion for their work and a terrific guide to the trials and tribulations of sticking to the land, sticking to the Man, and going organic.”  Atina Diffley won the Minnesota Book Award for Memoir & Creative Nonfiction with this book. Come hear her speak at the Chatfield Center for the Arts on Oct. 3rd at 7pm.  We feel fortunate to bring you this special program thanks to funding from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund. Mark your calendar today!

If you are headed to Kwik Trip, don’t forget to buy your Kwik Trip cards at the library!  Kwik Trip donates 10% back to the library. You’ll be giving a gift to the library and it won’t cost you anything!

 

 

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