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    by Emily M | Nov 24, 2017

    holidayscore5 holidayscore4 holidayscore6

    If you’re a holiday music lover, you’ll want to be sure to check out our collection of holiday CDs, as well as the downloadable/streamable music available through ACPL's subscription to Freegal and Hoopla.  But did you know that we also carry holiday music scores? 

    If you play an instrument, now is a great time to explore our large collection of music scores at the Main Library.  Brush off your piano, guitar, violin, flute, etc and perform some holiday tunes for your family and friends.  We also have several non-Holiday scores available featuring classical, jazz, pop, and country, as well as music from popular movies and Broadway shows. 

    EmilyLong before becoming a librarian, Emily was an avid library patron. She enjoys reading fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, biographies, and classic children’s literature. Her favorite book is Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery.


    by Erin | Nov 22, 2017

    When you think of the Newbery Medal, you may not think about graphic novels. After all, when selecting potential books for the award, the committee can only consider illustrations as part of their criteria if the illustrations detract from the story. Otherwise, they must focus solely on the text. Seeing as graphic novels are stories that are told primarily through illustrations, you would think they would be more or less disqualified for this award.


    However, Newbery committee members have been selecting graphic novels in recent years, looking past the illustrations and giving credit to the writing. Both Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson and El Deafo by Cece Bell have gotten Newbery honor awards within the past few years.


    Because of this, we have not just one, but two graphic novels on our current Mock Newbery list: Real Friends by Shannon Hale and All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson.


    Real Friends

    Real Friends
    tells the story of Shannon and Adrienne. The two have been inseparable since Kindergarten, but find themselves being torn apart in middle school due to cliques and popularity. While this is primarily Shannon’s story, readers also get to see what life is like for other characters as well, which does a wonderful job of illustrating the nuances of middle school life.

    All's Faire


    All’s Faire in Middle School also focuses on friendship and popularity, but it adds a Renaissance faire into the mix. In this graphic novel, the main character, Imogene, goes off to middle school and attempts to make new friends while keeping her side job as a performer in a Renaissance faire a secret. She also has to deal with the fact that her family isn’t as rich as some of her classmates, and her younger brother is a bit hyperactive.


    Along with popularity and friendship, each of these stories deal with issues such as bullies, growing up, socio-economic class, and standing up for what you believe in despite what others may think. Those are all pretty serious themes. Will one of these two graphic novels win the coveted Newbery Award? I guess we’ll just have to wait to find out.

    I can't wait to talk about this book at our Mock Newbery discussion which will be held on February 3rd, 2018 at the Main Library in downtown Fort Wayne, IN. Or add your comments below!  We'd love to know what YOU thought of this title.

    Each week, beginning the first week of November 2017 through the last week of January 2018, we will be discussing one (or more) of the titles on our 2018 Mock Newbery list. (The complete list of titles we'll be discussing can be found here.)

    by SM | Nov 20, 2017

    The books listed here are even more new teen fantasy fiction novels to cuddle up to on a cold Fall day or night...


    Scott M
    Scott M, Editor - Scott is known around Shawnee Branch and about town as the “Library Dude” and is kind of squirrelly!  His favorite short story is Leaf by Niggle written by JRR Tolkien and he also works for chocolate brownies and Rice-Crispy treats!


    by Becky C | Nov 20, 2017
    This Beautiful FantasticDVD review:  This Beautiful Fantastic

    Librarian Bella Brown begins each day with the declaration, "Today, I'm going to make a difference."  And by the end of this contemporary fairy tale, she does -- although not by presenting a library member with the right book, at the right time.  As it turns out, someone will lend her the right book, at the right time.  And then she will write her own.

    Bella is an eccentric character.  She keeps the interior of her rented flat in London impeccably neat but has let her garden become a mess.  This annoys her grumpy neighbor Alfie a great deal.  After she falls in a storm, she finds herself on his couch, being tended by a doctor and Alfie's cook, Vernon.  Alfie rants at everyone.  The next morning, Bella's landlord shows up to inspect the property and gives her one month to clean it up or she will be evicted.

    And so it begins.  It's a lovely movie.  Yes, some things were a bit hasty -- I think the Vernon storyline would have been more plausible had we been given the sense that he and Bella encountered each other regularly -- but it really didn't nag me for long.  And I found myself wondering where his extensive legal knowledge came from -- was he a lawyer before he became a cook, or did he just really like reading up on the law?  Did I miss something?  Minor quibbles.  I loved the growth of the relationships among Bella, Alfie, and Vernon. 

    Charming as he was, I felt myself empathizing with the head librarian regarding Bella's love interest, Billy.  When the librarian tells you that eating is not allowed in the library, don't bring a messy sandwich and eat it at a library table, surrounded by several old books.  Sheesh.  And I wish the scene where Billy invites Bella back to his home had been done differently.  That aside, Jessica Brown Findlay (Bella) and Jeremy Irvine (Billy) were adorable together.

    Dry humor is sprinkled throughout the movie and I loved every bit of it.  The librarian in charge of Bella's workplace alternates between spelling out admonishments on a letter board and using the PA system when she's particularly frustrated with people talking in the library.  Alfie, expertly played by Tom Wilkenson, has the best lines.  Vernon, played by Andrew Scott (Moriarty on Sherlock), has the best facial expressions. 

    If you enjoy a good fairy tale every now and then, give this dvd a try.  And, if you like it, please share your favorite Alfie quotes in the comments!

    Becky CBecky likes to read … A LOT. When she’s not reading, she likes to pretend that she can garden. Her favorite books are The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz and The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman..
    by Kay S | Nov 17, 2017
    Yes, it's time for upcoming releases for the months of November 15 to December 14, 2017. Winter's howling around the corner, it's time to get out a warm book and relax. Here are a few I'm hearing good things about. And, remember these dates reflect the release dates not the dates they will hit the library shelves.

    Historical Romance
    Victoria Alexander

    Victoria Alexander
    The Lady Traveler’s Guide to Larceny With a Dashing Stranger
    Lady Travelers Society series
    November 28

    Loretta Chase

    Loretta Chase
    A Duke in Shining Armor
    Difficult Dukes series
    November 28

    Alyssa Cole

    Alyssa Cole
    A Hope Divided
    The Loyal League series
    November 28

    Contemporary Romance/Mainstream Fiction/Women's Fiction

    Alisha Rai
    Wrong to Need You
    Forbidden Hearts series
    Contemporary Romance
    November 28

    Mystery/Thrillers/Romantic Suspense/Suspense

    C.M. Gleason
    Murder in the Lincoln White House
    Lincoln's White House Mystery series
    November 28


    James Rollins
    The Demon Crown

    A Sigma Force Novel series
    December 5


    Joanna Schaffhausen
    The Vanishing Season
    December 5

    Paranormal/Fantasy/Science Fiction/Urban Fantasy
    Lynn Kurland

    Lynn Kurland
    The Dreamer’s Song
    Nine Kingdom's series
    December 5

    Robin Owens

    Robin Owens
    Heart Sight
    A Celta Novel series
    December 5

    kayKay is an avid reader of historical romance books, maybe with a little trip into paranormal land and an occasional journey into mystery world.
    by Dawn Stoops | Nov 16, 2017
    cover image for my first book of patterns
    My First Book of Patterns by Bobby and June George is truly a book for babies of high style and discerning taste. It's not everyday that books for such little ones use words like "Argyle" and "Chevron".

    It is indeed a delightful book. It will engage wee ones with its high contrast picture style and add a little fun for the parents as well. The entire book's design is pretty classy, from the lovely patterns on the cover, to the festive everyday scenes that illustrate each pattern (hello plaid city).

    book image for my first book of patternsbook image for my first book of patterns
    This board book lives with many, many other board books at your library. Grab a bag full today and read to those babies!
    by Audrey Clark | Nov 16, 2017

    New Books November 2017

    The following books are a selection of new arrivals at the Allen County Public Library.

    Fantasy & Science Fiction

    Jade City
    Fonda Lee
    When a powerful new drug emerges that lets anyone—even foreigners—utilize the magical properties of jade, the simmering tension between the Kauls and the rival Ayt family erupts into open violence on the island of Kekon.

    Oathbringer (Stormlight Archive)
    Brandon Sanderson
    Taking refuge from the formidable Everstorm in the tower city of Urithiru, Dalinar and the Alethi forces join the newly raised Knights Radiant to explore the legendary city's mysteries and confront long-lost truths that challenge everything they believe.

    Future Home of the Living God
    Louise Erdrich
    A tale set in a world of reversing evolution and a growing police state follows the efforts of a pregnant woman who investigates her biological family while awaiting the birth of a child who may emerge as a member of a primitive human species.

    Andy Weir
    Augmenting her limited income by smuggling contraband to survive on the moon's wealthy city of Artemis, Jazz agrees to commit what seems to be a perfect, lucrative crime only to find herself embroiled in a conspiracy for control of the city.

    The City of Brass
    S.A. Chakraborty
    A young con artist of unsurpassed talent inadvertently summons a mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, revealing the existence of true magic before the future of a magical Middle Eastern kingdom falls into her hands.

    Into the Drowning Deep
    Mira Grant
    Victoria Stewart and her crew sail to the Mariana Trench in the hopes of discovering the fate of the Atargatis, which, along with its crew, including Victoria's sister, was lost at sea during the crew's attempt to film a mockumentary on ancient sea creatures of legend.

    Weave a Circle Round
    Kari Maaren
    In this love letter to history, legend, and the power of stories that takes inspiration from Norse myth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge—a young woman is catapulted through time and space after she runs afoul of her eccentric neighbors.

    Penric’s Mission (World of the Five Gods)
    Lois McMaster Bujold
    Sorcerer Penric, who is possessed by a clever chaos demon named Desdemona, has his clandestine mission of diplomacy to Cedonia upended when he finds himself gravely injured and imprisoned in the darkest of dungeons.


    General Fiction

    The Quantum Spy: A Thriller
    David Ignatius
    CIA agent Harris Chang uncovers a mole in a top secret, American research lab racing to develop a quantum computer before China does.

    Krysten Ritter
    A young environmental lawyer returns to her small Indiana hometown to investigate pollution by a regional plastics giant--but settling old scores and healing old wounds weigh heavily on her mind.

    Heather, the Totality
    Matthew Weiner
    Mark and Karen Breakstone have constructed the idyllic life of wealth and status they always wanted, made complete by their beautiful and extraordinary daughter Heather. But they are still not quite at the top. When the new owners of the penthouse above them begin construction, an unstable stranger penetrates the security of their comfortable lives and threatens to destroy everything they've created. 

    The Midnight Line (Jack Reacher)
    Lee Child
    Spotting a hard-won women's West Point class ring in a pawn shop, Jack Reacher fights a biker gang and a South Dakota gangster to discover the truth about the ring and why its owner sold it.

    Typoon Fury (Oregon Files)
    Clive Cussler
    When they are hired to track down a valuable art collection, Juan Cabrillo and the crew of the Oregon find themselves sailing into a perfect storm involving a Filipino insurgency, a Japanese developed super-warrior drug, and a South African mercenary.

    Every Breath You Take (Under Suspicion)
    Mary Higgins Clark
    Struggling with the departure of co-host Alex Buckley, television crime-solver Laurie Moran is teamed with a despised Ryan Nichols, who draws her into the cold case of a wealthy widow pushed to her death from the roof of a famous museum.

    The Noel Diary
    Richard Paul Evans
    The latest holiday-themed novel by the best-selling author of The Christmas Box follows the experiences of a man who, in the wake of estrangements and losses, is given a chance to rewrite and rediscover his true past.

    In This Moment (Baxter Family)
    Karen Kingsbury
    Risking his job by organizing an after-school bible-study program to combat local crime and gang activity, Indiana high school principal Wendell Quinn is delighted by the program's positive results, until a complaint renders him the subject of media speculation and a controversial lawsuit.

    End Game (Will Robie)
    David Baldacci
    Returning home from an overseas mission to discover that his boss has gone missing in remote Colorado, Will Robie and his sometime partner, Jessica Reel, team up in an increasingly violent small town, where their lives are soon in jeopardy. 

    The Ballad of Black Bart
    Loren D. Estleman
    A rivalry turns into a suspenseful duel of wits between a legendary Wells Fargo chief and a notorious stagecoach robber who between heists poses as an upper-class gentleman.

    The Whispering Room (Jane Hawk)
    Dean Koontz
    Her husband dead and her son in hiding, rogue FBI agent Jane Hawk finds a connection between a schoolteacher's murderous, and ultimately suicidal, rampage; the teacher's secret journal; and a cabal of power players bent on controlling America.  

    Past Perfect
    Danielle Steel
    Leaving their well-ordered Manhattan life to move to San Francisco triggers a collision between the past and present for a successful married couple who during a small earthquake experience visions of their new home's original inhabitants from a century earlier.      

    Tom Clancy Power and Empire (Jack Ryan)
    Marc Cameron
    A newly belligerent Chinese government leaves U.S. President Jack Ryan with only a few desperate options to control a series of attacks designed to sabotage peace negotiations.       


    Historical Fiction

    The Revolution of Marina M.
    Janet Fitch
    A young woman of privilege coming of age in 1916 St. Petersburg finds her life and ambitions violently upended by historical events that find her joining the cause for workers' rights, falling in love with a radical poet and navigating devastating betrayals.

    Deadly Cure
    Lawrence Goldstone
    In 1899 Brooklyn, Dr. Noah Whitestone is accused of prescribing a lethal dose of medicine that killed a 5-year-old boy, prompting him to joining forces with muckraking journalists to clear his name, find the origins of a deadly experimental drug from overseas and root out the real killer. 

    Mrs. Osmond
    John Banville
    Presents a continuation of the story of Isabel Archer, the heroine of Henry James' "The Portrait of a Lady," that finds her receiving an unexpected inheritance and married to a cruel man before returning to her home in Italy at the side of an unexpected companion.

    A Darker Sea
    James L. Haley
    A naval saga by the award-winning author of The Shores of Tripoli chronicles the period leading up to the War of 1812 from the perspective of brig commander Bliven Putnam, who disrupts British merchant shipping before an encounter with an old nemesis leads to a reunion and helps set the stage for one of the war's most infamous battles.

    Secrets of Cavendon
    Barbara Taylor Bradford
    In the summer of 1949, a new generation running Cavendon Hall is torn by scandal, intrigue, and romantic betrayals that force the Inghams and Swanns to protect each other from unimaginable threats.

    A Hope Divided (Loyal League)
    Alyssa Cole
    The Civil War has turned neighbor against neighbor—but for scientist-spy and free black woman Marlie Lynch and philosophical Union soldier she helps to hide, war could bind them together when they must go on the run on the Underground Railroad to escape a common enemy.

    Mystery & Detective

    A Christmas Return
    Anne Perry
    After receiving a strange package that sparks memories of a twenty-year-old murder that shattered a friendship, Mariah travels to Surrey in hopes of reconnecting with her former friend and solving the crime.

    City of Lies
    Victoria Thompson
    Using her guile to relieve so-called respectable men of their ill-gotten gains, Elizabeth Miles hides among a group of privileged women and bonds with an honest man while outmaneuvering a nemesis who blames her for his losses.

    The House of Unexpected Sisters (No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency)
    Alexander McCall Smith
    Investigating the case of a woman wrongfully dismissed from her job, Precious Ramotswe discovers information that causes her to rethink her views about the case before meeting a local nurse who shares her unusual surname.

    Hardcore Twenty-Four (Stephanie Plum)
    Janet Evanovich
    Reluctantly agreeing to babysit a professional grave robber's pet boa constrictor, Stephanie Plum is embroiled in a bizarre series of crimes that escalate from the violation of stolen corpses to the murder of a homeless man, a case that is complicated by the return of the hunky but reckless Diesel.

    Count to Ten: A Private Novel
    James Patterson
    Summoned by the head of the world's top investigation agency to join a new office in Delhi, former Private India head Santosh Wagh struggles to set aside his personal demons before tackling a case involving murderously corrupt authorities and human remains found at a government site.

    Sleep No More: Six Murderous Tales
    P.D. James
    An anthology of six previously uncollected stories by the author of Death Comes to Pemberley explores the memories, emotional machinations, rationalizations, dreams and desires of people who get away with the perfect murder or who help keep information about a killing secret.

    The People vs. Alex Cross
    James Patterson
    Charged with gunning down followers of his nemesis Gary Soneji in cold blood, Alex Cross is wrongly portrayed as a trigger-happy corrupt cop while he struggles to prove to a skeptical jury and dwindling supporters that his actions were in self-defense. 

    The Man in the Crooked Hat
    Harry Dolan
    Having spent two years searching for the man he believes murdered his wife, private investigator Jack Pellum follows a bewildering message to a winding trail of unsolved murders and a philosophical man with a dark and secret past.



    Lies Jane Austen Told Me

    Julie Wright
    A fan of Jane Austen's novels, Emma Pierce is ready to fall in love with her Mr. Darcy. But then she falls in love with her ex-boyfriend's brother and learns that maybe romance isn't quite as easy Jane promised her it would be.

    Blue Ridge Sunrise
    Denise Hunter
    Former free spirit Zoe Collins swore she'd never again set foot in Copper Creek or speak to the man who broke her heart. But return she must when her beloved granny dies, leaving the family legacy to Zoe---a peach orchard nestled at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

    American Drifter
    Heather Graham
    A young U.S. Army veteran suffering from PTSD drifts around Brazil, struggling to make peace with the world's illogical elements before fatefully falling in love with a gangster's mistress.

    Refuge Cove
    Janet Dailey
    A bride on the run from her would-be husband becomes stranded in the Alaska wilderness before accepting help from a rugged bush pilot who would reconnect with his estranged son.



    The Inner Life of Animals: Love, Grief, and Compassion—Surprising Observations of a Hidden World
    Peter Wohlleben
    The best-selling author of The Hidden Life of Trees presents a revelatory exploration of the diverse emotional intelligence of animals as demonstrated in vibrant stories about loving pigs, cheating magpies, scheming roosters and more. 

    Obama: An Intimate Portrait
    Pete Souza
    A visual biography of Barack Obama's historic presidency, captured in unprecedented detail by his White House photographer, includes images documenting the most consequential hours of the Obama administration as well as the 44th President's encounters with world leaders, cultural figures and family members.

    It’s All Relative: Adventures Up and Down the World’s Family Tree
    A.J. Jacobs
    The best-selling author of The Year of Living Biblically traces his three-year investigation into what constitutes family, describing how after receiving an e-mail from a stranger who claimed to be a distant cousin, he embarked on an effort to build the biggest family tree in history.

    Dollars and Sense: How We Misthink Money and How to Spend Smarter
    Dan Ariely
    Blending humor and behavioral economics, the New York Times bestselling author delves into the truly illogical world of personal finance to help people better understand why they make bad financial decisions, and gives them the knowledge they need to make better ones.

    You Can't Spell America Without Me: The Really Tremendous Inside Story of My Fantastic First Year as President Donald J. Trump (a So-Called Parody)
    Alec Baldwin
    A satirical memoir written in the style of Donald Trump shares lampooning insights into the 45th President's election, disdain for the press, backroom strategy sessions with White House advisers and world-changing decisions.

    The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State
    Nadia Murad
    A human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize nominee traces the harrowing and ultimately inspiring story of her captivity by the Islamic State, describing how militants massacred the people of her Iraqi farming village, killing most of her family members and forcing her into prostitution before she escaped and became an advocate for human rights.

    What Unites Us: Reflections on Patriotism
    Dan Rather
    In a collection of essays, the venerated television journalist celebrates our shared values, reminds us of what matters most in our great country, and shows us what patriotism looks like.

    Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose
    Joe Biden
    The former vice-president of the United States chronicles the difficult final year of his son's battle with cancer, his efforts to balance his responsibilities to the country and his family, and the lessons he learned.

    Higher Is Waiting
    Tyler Perry
    The cinematic innovator behind Tyler Perry Studios traces his youth in New Orleans through his successful career, in an uplifting account of his spiritual awakening that explains how his faith has enriched his life and sustained him in hard times.

    Fat for Fuel Ketogenic Cookbook
    Joseph Mercola and Pete Evans
    Natural-health expert Dr. Joseph Mercola and superstar Australian chef Pete Evans join forces in this companion to the best-selling Fat for Fuel.

    Breaking Free: How I Escaped Polygamy, the FLDS Cult, and My Father, Warren Jeffs
    Rachel Jeffs
    The daughter of the self-proclaimed prophet of the FLDS Church describes the abusive patriarchal culture in which she was raised by sister wives and dominating men and discusses how her father remains a powerful influence on his followers.

    Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World
    Timothy Ferriss
    Life-changing wisdom from 130 of the world’s highest achievers in short, action-packed pieces, featuring inspiring quotes, life lessons, career guidance, personal anecdotes, and other advice.


    Teen Books

    Marissa Meyer
    In a ruined world where humans with extraordinary abilities have become the world's champions of justice, a vengeance-seeking girl and a justice-seeking boy team up against a villain who has the power to destroy everything they have worked to protect.

    War of Cards
    Colleen Oakes
    The conclusion to the Queen of Hearts series that reimagines the story of the infamous Wonderland queen.

    Follow Me
    Sara Shepard
    The second book in The Amateurs series about four teen detectives.

    Fierce: How Competing for Myself Changed Everything
    Aly Raisman
    The true story of the gold-medal-winning gymnast who has competed in two Olympics.

    No Saints In Kansas
    Amy Brashear
    A fictional retelling of the murders that inspired Truman Capote’s “In Cold Blood.”

    Children’s Books

    Mosquitoes Don’t Bite Me
    Pendred Noyce
    Mosquitoes don't bite Nala Simiyu. It's part of who she is, like being a half-Kenyan seventh-grader whose mother is in a wheelchair. But when a schoolmate's father--who happens to head up a large drug company--learns of Nala's special power, the excitement begins.

    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Getaway
    Jeff Kinney
    Book twelve in the popular series about Greg Heffley.

    Supergirl: Age of Atlantis
    Jo Whittemore
    An all-new Supergirl story based on the television series.

    Jimmy Cajoleas
    Perfect for fans of The Girl Who Drank the Moon and The Thickety, this spellbinding story follows a young girl named Goldeline on an adventure through a fairy tale forest filled with dark and wondrous magic.

    Becoming Kareem: Growing Up On and Off the Court
    Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
    Written especially for young readers, the basketball legend focuses on the relationships he had with his father and his basketball coaches.


    Picture Books

    It’s Shoe Time
    Bryan Collier
    An early reader that turns the closet on its heel and redefines what it means to be a pair.

    Before She Was Harriet
    Lesa Cline-Ransome
    The story of Harriet Tubman told in beautiful verse and gorgeous images.

    Read the Book, Lemmings!
    Ame Dyckman
    Aboard the S.S. Cliff, First Mate Foxy reads an interesting fact: "Lemmings don't jump off cliffs." But Foxy can't get the lemmings on the Cliff to read his book, too. They're too busy jumping off.

    Inky’s Great Escape
    Casey Lyall
    Based on a true story, this tale follows a daring, Houdini-esque octopus as he performs his greatest escape act yet.

    The Boy and the Whale 
    Mordicai Gerstein
    A boy and his father discover a whale tangled in their only fishing net.

    by Craig B | Nov 15, 2017

    cover for Alex Haley's novel, RootsBook Review: Alex Haley's winner of the 1977 Special Pulitzer Prize, Roots

    I may have to go back and read a Kenneth Roberts book evidently.

    See, though Roots is the first single novel to receive a “Special Pulitzer,” 20 years before Alex Haley took his prize in 1977, Kenneth Roberts was awarded a “Special Pulitzer” for a body of historical novels that “have long contributed to the creation of greater interest in our early American history.”  Sure, sure, there were other Special Pulitzers before and after Kenneth Roberts, but most of them went to newspapermen or newspapers or works of history and the like and since I’m in the business of reading Pulitzer novels and not newspapers or histories or entire bodies of work (I’m saving that for the Nobels when I read them) I haven’t had to worry too much about “Special Pulitzers” until now.  That said, I really do feel like my journey won’t be complete until I read at least one Kenneth Roberts novel, but maybe that can be a very good bridge over to the Nobels …

    More to the point, Roots is magnificent.  Yes, yes there has been controversy over some of the “factual” details of the story, but the real point is that this story happened, in whole, in part, in a variety of pieces to millions of people over the course of two or three centuries.  As we read the novel, as we consider Haley’s use of the term “faction,” and as we look at our lives today, we should keep that in mind. 

    Roots is quite a long book, and you probably know how I feel about that, but I can say with confidence, even if you can’t commit to the whole 899 pages you should definitely try to get through the first 83 chapters comprising the story arc of Kunta Kinte.  I think you’ll find it well-written enough to be absolutely worth your time.  And now for that Kenneth Roberts novel.  Anyone got a suggestion?

    by Teresa Walls | Nov 14, 2017

    book cover Patina by Jason Reynolds

    Patina by Jason Reynolds
    Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2017
    233 pages

    Patina, nickname Patty, is the main character in this second book of Jason Reynold's Track series, described on the inside book cover as an explosive series about "a fast but fiery group of kids who have a shot at the Junior Olympics, but have a lot to prove first -- to one another, and to themselves." A book in a series can be a bit tricky when thinking about the Mock Newbery because the book should be able to stand alone as a distinguished book. No problem with this novel; it does stand on its own.

    Patty and her sister are living with their aunt and uncle since their mother has many health complications due to diabetes. Throughout the book, Patty struggles with fitting in with the "hair flippers" at her new school. Her little sister is at the school too, but as Patty says about her sister, Maddy:

    she loves it, but that's because this is the only school she's ever been at. She's never been in a school where you didn't have to wear pleated paper bags. She never went to a school with boys, and yes, boys make school really, really annoying sometimes, but they also can make it pretty fun. Or at least funny. Maddy never went to a school with mostly black kids either. She's only known life as a "raisin in milk," as my Ma puts it. (p. 29)

    Patty's is a strong voice. She is also a strong runner. I am not a runner, but Reynold's description of the races and being on a track team seem spot-on to me. Reynolds dedicates the novel "For those who've been passed the baton too young." Patty is passed the baton literally and figuratively; her story is well worth reading.

    I can't wait to talk about this book at our Mock Newbery discussion which will be held on February 3rd, 2018 at the Main Library in downtown Fort Wayne, IN. Or add your comments below!  We'd love to know what YOU thought of this title.

    Each week, beginning the first week of November 2017 through the last week of January 2018, we will be discussing one (or more) of the titles on our 2018 Mock Newbery list. (The complete list of titles we'll be discussing can be found here.)

    by Evan | Nov 13, 2017
    Ex Libris

    Ex Libris is a new board game by Adam P. McIver in which you build your own library. In a fantasy town. With hundreds of punny book titles. ("Conjury to Avoid Jury Duty") Where you have to master a simple backward version of the Dewey Decimal system. Could anything be geekier?

    The game itself can be straightforward or tricky, depending on how much you care about tactics. But you can just have fun with the concept, enjoying the humor and building a library collection to please everyone -- especially the town authorities, who do not like banned books. You can also unleash your inner fussiness, because if you're going to win, you have to make sure your books are properly organized on your shelves. 

    (The phrase "ex libris" is a little mysterious. It traditionally appears on bookplates that show who owns the book. Internet searches suggest it means "from the books of" or "from books," but our Latin-English dictionary doesn't have the word "libris" at all. If you are a bit of a Latin scholar and can comment about this, please do so.) 

    Meanwhile, if you and your friends love books, humor and fantasy -- and have maybe just a little OCD -- Ex Libris may be a good game for you. 

    EvanEvan - Married, three children, two grandchildren, formerly a newspaper journalist, now a public librarian, at all times a board game nut.
    by Audio Reading Service | Nov 10, 2017


    Vicki Eber has been working with individuals to manage pain and stress for over a decade.

    Pyramid…Seated half-moon…Warrior poses… Audio Reading Service listeners can now build their core strength and flexibility from their head to their toes. Each Monday and Thursday morning at 8:00 am, we broadcast Gentle Yoga and Movement with Vicki Eber. Our listeners are guided through postures that are centering and grounding, with an emphasis on breath and alignment while listening to the body’s wisdom.

    From massage to yoga and meditation, certified wellness coach Vicki Eber enjoys seeking solutions from every aspect of the individual, and utilizing every tool she’s obtained in her education and experience to help others carve out their path to wellness. It is Vicki’s belief that anyone can achieve a balanced life, no matter where they are in their journey.  

    by Craig B | Nov 10, 2017
    cover for The Killers' album, Wonderful WonderfulMaybe a five minute opener for The Killers’ new album, Wonderful Wonderful, wasn’t such a good idea, although I appreciate the musical exploration.  I’m a little uncomfortable with the bald self-promotion of the second track, but goodness gracious, it is catchy.  That aside, the best track on this album for me was “Tyson vs Douglas.”  What a funny, appropriate metaphor for the loss of innocence (that’s what it’s about, right?); the sort of song that makes listening to an entire album out of curiosity mostly worth it.  One great song is all it takes, or at least that’s what the final track on Wonderful Wonderful would have us believe, that “just … one (is needed) to get through to (us).”  Well, for now, The Killers are correct.  They got through.  And it took just one.  I mean, I’m writing this mostly-positive blog post, right?

    Suggested Use: This album is not for sharing.  At least not in its entirety.  It might be good to sample from for a playlist, but its real utility lies in its encouragement of you getting some alone time.  The New Wave New Wave quality of Wonderful Wonderful is just too confusing for groups of friends.  Besides you don’t want anyone around when you tear up to “Tyson vs. Douglas,” right?

    by Dawn Stoops | Nov 09, 2017
    Can you guess the book characters? Move your mouse over each picture to see who it is.
    hidden picture of Lola hidden picture of Yoko hidden picture of brother and sister bear
    hidden picture of Junie b jones hidden picture of pete the cat hidden picture of buster and arthur
    hidden picture of fancy nancy hidden picture of piggie hidden picture of bob the builder
    Thanks for playing!
    by Mary Voors | Nov 08, 2017

    Cover of book Wishtree

    by Katherine Applegate
    A Feiwel and Friends Book, 2017
    215 pages

    The summary offered by the publisher in our library's catalog is: "A red oak tree and a crow help their human neighbors work out their differences." This summary does not begin to express the complexity and thoughtfulness of this book.

    Wishtree begins simply enough with a comment from Red, the main character: "It's hard to talk to trees. We're not big on chitchat."

    The story revolves around Red, an oak tree who is "two hundred and sixteen rings old" and his friend, Bongo, a crow. Red watches over the neighborhood while protecting the natural community which takes shelter among its leaves and branches and hollows of its trunk. He also watches over the people in his neighborhood.

    While I am not normally a reader who enjoys "talking animals" stories, I totally fell for this book; a story which can be read on many levels. It will serve well as a read-aloud to primary level children about the importance and value of friendship. At the same time, its beautiful metaphors make it an amazing parable about welcoming and embracing diversity, not judging others before getting to know them, and recognizing that difference can bring strength.

    I can't wait to talk about this book at our Mock Newbery discussion which will be held on February 3rd, 2018 at the Main Library in downtown Fort Wayne, IN. Or add your comments below!  We'd love to know what YOU thought of this title.

    Each week, beginning the first week of November 2017 through the last week of January 2018, we will be discussing one (or more) of the titles on our 2018 Mock Newbery list. (The complete list of titles we'll be discussing can be found here.)

    by Emily M | Nov 08, 2017
    Looking for a book recommendation?  Look no further!  Here are a few good books I've enjoyed recently.

    TheKitchenDaughterBook Review: The Kitchen Daughter by Jael McHenry

    Twenty-six year old Ginny Selvaggio has undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome and leads a protected life, living at home with her parents who provide for her, while she spends her time surfing the internet and perfecting her cooking skills. When Ginny’s parents die in a freak accident, Ginny finds herself struggling under the weight of her grief, while clashing with her sister, Amanda.  Amanda believes they should sell their parents’ house and Ginny should move in with Amanda and her husband and children.  Ginny, on the other hand, is determined that she can continue to live alone in her parents’ home. 

    The themes of grief and family conflict are hardly original in fiction, but The Kitchen Daughter is unique in that it mixes in a touch of magical realism.  After her parents’ funeral, Ginny discovers that if she cooks the hand-written recipe of someone who has passed on, their ghost will appear to her.  Clues shared by these ghosts, along with old family mementos Ginny discovers while cleaning out the house, will unveil family secrets that are not what they seem.   

    hownottohateyourhusbandafterkidsBook Review: How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids by Jancee Dunn

    Jancee Dunn’s How Not to Hate Your Husband after Kids is laugh-out-loud funny, full of relatable, real-life anecdotes, and the advice is both practical and helpful. 

    Many couples have strong, healthy marriages before having children, but develop struggles after children enter the picture.  Dunn, a free-lance writer living in New York City with her husband and six-year-old daughter, felt her marriage fit this category and wanted to do something about it.  While Dunn openly admitted she could sometimes turn into a screaming harpy, she felt justified in her anger considering she did the majority of the childcare and housework, despite the fact that she and her husband both worked.  Dunn spent months doing research, interviewing family and friends, and going to various counselors with her husband.  What she found was that her situation was one shared by many women, and one that often wreaks havoc on marriages. 

    Dunn’s honest and self-deprecating portrayal of herself within her marriage was both entertaining and insightful.  The many stories shared, both from her own marriage and from friends and family, illustrated perfectly what she found to be true in the academic research.  Perhaps most important of all, the advice shared in the book can easily be put into practice.  While simple, it is also effective.  “Your spouse can’t read your mind.  Tell them clearly what you want” and “Say thank you often” are just a few of the gems Dunn shares with her readers.  While the title indicates this is a book for women with children, it’s actually great for both men and women, as well as couples who don’t have kids. 

    thetwofamilyhouseBook Review: The Two-Family House by Lynda Cohen Loigman

    In New York City in the 1940s, two brothers live intertwined lives, despite being vastly different in temperament, interests, skills, and personality.  Together, the two brothers run the cardboard box factory left to them by their father.  And together with their wives and children, the brothers live in the same house, one family in the upstairs apartment and one family in the downstairs apartment.

    At first glance, this is a scene of domestic bliss: a successful family business, sisters-in-law who are the best of friends, and cousins who can play together every day.  Underneath the lovely façade, however, fissures of discontent will lead to a shocking choice wrapped in secrets and lies.  In The Two-Family House, Loigman explores themes of family, friendship, loss, and betrayal with subtlety and grace. 

    What about you?  What good books have you read lately?

    EmilyLong before becoming a librarian, Emily was an avid library patron. She enjoys reading fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, biographies, and classic children’s literature. Her favorite book is Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery.


    by Becky C | Nov 06, 2017
    Editor's Note:  Becky is one of our roaming librarians.  She works at each of the Ask Here desks as needed.  The variety of questions keeps her on her toes and that's one of her favorite things about working at ACPL!

    Business and Technology

    Business, Science & Technology is located on the second floor of the Main Library.  If you've called 260-421-1200, there's an excellent chance you've spoken with the librarians in our department.  All calls to ACPL's general number are routed here first -- however, if both of our lines are busy, the calls are routed to Readers' Services -- another helpful group of folks!   

    As you enter the department, you'll notice the Ask Here desk to the left.  Make sure you stop by!  We have more than a few tips and tricks up our sleeves for making the most of your visit. 

    You'll also notice that we have a large, comfortable seating area beneath the circular window.  Our legal reference collection lines the wall -- you know we have an extensive legal collection, right?  While the reference sets must be used inside the department, we also have several self-help legal titles within the regular stacks that you can check out.  You'll want to note that while we can help you figure out the various indexes involved, we cannot tell you which form you may need for your situation.  That would take us over the line from helpful librarian to someone attempting to practice law without a license.  If you have questions about what form you may need, we can show you options but the decision remains yours.  We have a handout at the desk with numbers you may call for limited legal advice.

    The shelves across from the Ask Here desk feature new titles added to our collection.  Popular topics shelved in our department include Astronomy, Cookbooks, Do It Yourself Manuals, Finance, Gardening, Health & Drug Information, Job Search, Legal Guides, Pet Care, and Repair Manuals.  We also have display shelving to highlight timely titles we think you may be interested in -- please feel free to check them out!

    As you browse the shelves, you may notice that we have a collection of catalogs available for checkout.  I love these!  We also have a unique map collection -- contour maps of Indiana, Ohio and Michigan, divided into quadrangles at a 1:24,000 scale.  

    While we cover several subjects within our department, Business, Science and Technology is one of six specialized departments within the Main Library.  Topics we may only touch aspects of will be more fully represented in either Art, Music & Media; Childrens'; Genealogy; Readers' Services, or Teens(Look for posts about each of those departments in the weeks to come)

    We have 13 regular use and 2 Express (15 minute use) computers in our department.  Business, Science & Technology, Art, Music & Media, and Readers' Services all provide computers for general public use.  To use our computers,  you need to bring your library card -- if you have the ACPL app on your phone, you can use it to scan your bar code to sign up.  Printing is available -- we charge 10 cents a page for a black/white copy and 25 cents a page for a color copy.  You'll want to bring dollar bills with you -- the machines we use to load money on your library card to pay for the printouts only work with paper money -- they don't accept change and they don't provide change.  Any money you load onto your library card remains on there until you deduct it for copies. 

    Finally, we have one study room available on a first come/first served basis.  It's popular!

    Whew!  I hope you enjoyed this "tour" of the department!  If you did, and if you're interested in follow-up posts about specific features, please leave a comment.  I'd love to hear from you! 

    Perhaps you'd like to contact the Business, Science & Technology Department directly?  We can be reached at 260-421-1215

    Becky CBecky likes to read … A LOT. When she’s not reading, she likes to pretend that she can garden. Her favorite books are The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz and The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman..
    by Dawn Stoops | Nov 03, 2017
    cover image for building amazing creations

    For all those lovers of LEGO Bricks, there's a new book you've got to see!

    Sean Kenney, a renown LEGO Brick artist, is the author of Building Amazing Creations. This isn't Sean's first book about LEGOs but it is the first one to show his studio, give lots of details about his work and exhibits, and have hundreds of pictures of his cool creations. It truly is a feast for the eyes with so many brightly colored sculptures. 

    The book is broken down into 13 chapters like 'Animals', 'Robots', and 'Behind the Scenes'. I loved learning that the mama polar bear is his largest sculpture and weighs 625 pounds with more than 125,000 bricks. I also found his studio photos interesting with drawers and tubs and boxes of bricks all sorted by size, shape, and color. Building Amazing Creations is 382 pages of fascinating facts, glorious LEGO sculptures, and information about the life of an artist. All ages of LEGO fans will find something to love in this new book!

    Curious about Sean's other books?
    Check one, or five, out at your local library!

    cover image for totally cool creations
    cover image for cool city
     cover image for cool cars and trucks
    cover image for cool robots
    cover image for cool castles
    cover image for cool creations in 101 pieces
      cover image for cool creations in 35 pieces  

    by Kayla W | Nov 03, 2017


    What is NaNoWriMo?  It is a writing marathon that asks its participants to try their hand at writing the rough draft of a long form writing project throughout the month of November. The website which the program calls its home base got its start and continues forward with one major goal in mind – to hopefully begin and end a writing project in the space of thirty days.  To be more specific, the original goal of the San Francisco-based program was to propel novel writers to burn through the projected word count of a typical novel – fifty-thousand words – beginning on the first official minute of November first, and ending as soon as midnight strikes for the first day of December.

    National Novel Writing Month, or as it is oftentimes known as NaNoWriMo, has been a “thing”, mainly in the U.S, for the past eighteen years. Yes, this year the month-long writing marathon is old enough to drink alcohol, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than to encourage Allen County writers to give it the old college try.  I, myself, haven’t participated in what amounts to a writer’s version of a triathlon for years.  This year, I am returning.  I hope to entice a few others to join me and the local community of writers to give Allen County some pride, in the form of a raise in this years’ shared wordcount.

    Sound like your sort of masochistic fun?  Then your first step would be to check out the site for yourself, and see if it’s something that you would like to do.  If you do it off-site and without any writing buddies, it’s an endurance test that you may hopefully reap the rewards of in the coming year or years. Well worth a shot, if you ask me! If you participate, the main area of attention has always been the forums, where you can find writers and the writing curious hanging out in one place for one magical month.  There, you can expect to ask and answer some questions that have been gnawing at the back of your mind and find some of the finest procrastination during the month where you really shouldn’t be doing just that. 

    Yes, it's already started, but there's nothing stopping you from jumping in - I'm sure with just a few extra hours of hardcore writing, you'll catch right up!

    As far as I know, the NaNo-ers have had a meet-up at one of the ACPL branches not too long ago, but I don't know if there happen to be any more regional meet-ups in the works.  If there are, I would encourage first timers especially to check in, whether it's a mini pep rally over coffees, or it's a friendly write-in.  If you're interested in joining or hosting a meet-up, I would recommend checking into the regional forum of your choice and checking to see what's already planned.   If you want to write or talk writing in person, that's great!  To me, NaNoWriMo is all about writers coming out of their work spaces and joining in conversation about the craft that is so often a lonesome prospect.

    If you find yourself in need of inspiration, I would recommend borrowing one of the ACPL's copies of the creator of NaNoWriMo's ode to writing, No Plot? No Problem! 

    If you’re interested in joining us, then there’s just one thing I want to say, and that is: gentlefolk, get ready to start your engines!

    Kayla loves all things weird, wonderful, and macabre.  Her soul’s in writing, and her hobbies include gaming, watching movies and television shows, and reading anything and everything. Her black cat’s TOTALLY, 100%, not evil.

    by Nancy | Nov 01, 2017
    Poldark cast image via BBC

    So, the third season of Poldark on PBS is airing now.  It’s so nice to have that Sunday evening treat each week.  I was smitten with Ross Poldark and Demelza right out of the gate with season 1.  After it aired, I read all of Winston Graham’s Poldark books (12 in all!) in quick succession.  I even tried to watch the 1970’s version of Poldark, but despite all the raves, I couldn’t get into it.  I also tried other Winston Graham books to tide me over (because, of course, the new season took a long time coming), but alas, they didn’t hold a candle to the Poldark clan.  Maybe one day I’ll try his other books again, though probably not before re-reading these.

    The Poldark books, or, more properly, the Novels of Cornwall, made me think about the human condition.  I could connect with the characters’ flaws so well.  Yes, even George Warleggan (perhaps a little too much for comfort).  Elizabeth too.  Even though I know what is coming, I love seeing these actors play it out.  Graham set his stories in a particular time (late 1700s and early 1800s) and place (Cornwall, England) and his research bleeds into the story.  The books had me tracking down information online about steam engines, Napoleon, and other historical facts included in the novels.  I found myself trying to figure out where names like Demelza and Clowance came from (they are places in Cornwall).  But mostly, I just wanted to find out what happened to Ross, Demelza, Morwenna, George, Valentine…. I know there is so much to come!  The current season is covering books 5 & 6, The Black Moon and The Four Swans.  So they are moving right along. 

    But reading the books, as is usually the case, made me a bit disappointed in the casting.  I have one major change I would make.  There are two female leads that I feel would have been a better match to the books had they just switched roles.  Can you guess which two female actors I would have swapped?

    How about you?  Are you a fan of the series?  Are you reading the books?  I’d love to connect with you!

    PS: If you like Poldark, I think you would like season 1 of Victoria too.  Lord Melbourne--swoon!  Again, so much history and human flaws!  Of course, watching it had me reading Daisy Goodwin’s book and a biography of Lord Melbourne by Lord Cecil which I can highly recommend.  Fascinating man.  Season 2 of Victoria in January will hopefully keep me going after season 3 of Poldark ends and the long wait returns.

    by Dawn S | Nov 01, 2017
    winter book sale ad

    Join us for our first annual Winter Book Sale! Every branch of the library will be hosting a book sale this winter, sponsored by the Friends of the Allen County Public Library.

    Paperbacks $0.50

    Hardbacks $1.00

    Oversize $2.00

    Media $3.00

    New Haven
    Tuesday January 2
    10:00 am - 9:00 pm

    Little Turtle
    Saturday December 9
    12:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    Thursday January 11 and Friday January 12
    10:00 am -12:00 pm & 1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

    Monday January 15
    10:00 am - 9:00 pm

    Monday January 15
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm

    Monday January 15
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm

    Wednesday January 17
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm

    Wednesday January 17
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm

    Thursday January 18
    12:00 pm - 9:00 pm

    Thursday January 18
    12:00 pm - 5:00 pm & 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

    Saturday January 20
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Monday January 22
    10:00 am - 9:00 pm

    Hessen Cassel
    Thursday January 25
    10:00 am - 9:00 pm

    Saturday January 27
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm