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    by Evan | Nov 02, 2016
    DNAFuture historians have a great new data source: you.

    And you and you and you, and me.

    Technology and determined genealogists are bringing together millions of family records at the same time high-tech geneticists are laying out human DNA records like a map. If not already, your social family history and your genetic family history will soon be matchable with mine and with that of our mutual cousin in Singapore. 

    I hope it makes people happy.

    Look, I know I'm out of my depth here. If you wonder about this kind of stuff, you owe it to yourself to read Christine Kenneally's 2014 book The Invisible History of the Human Race: How DNA and History Shape Our Identities and Our Futures. Kenneally is an advocate; she loves where these technologies are going and thinks more knowledge about our histories will be good overall for individuals, families and society.

    Overall. With that qualifier, I can agree with her. Individuals can prevent diseases, families can see how long they've been driving each other crazy, societies can come to better grips with such things as racism and adoption. 

    But Kenneally has a lot of her own qualifiers. The biggest and most infamous is the way genealogy got wrapped up with violent racism in such places as the American South and 20th century Germany. Meanwhile DNA science can show you your genetic makeup, but will you read it scientifically or with a head full of fears and prejudices? Should you have the right to keep that information private? Or is such privacy even feasible in the Internet era? 

    Kenneally tells personal history discovery stories -- hers and others' -- that I found mostly distracting. More interesting are nuggets that show how genealogy and DNA science help savvy historians reveal previously unseen currents in the past. For instance, the slave trade not only hit hardest in the wealthiest African regions, but those regions are now among the poorest on that continent. This is partly because slavery fostered so much suspicion in later generations that they haven't been able to rebuild the culture of trust that is required for a thriving economy. 

    At home I have a lot of boxes of family history materials, but I'm barely making a dent in them. It's hard for me to get past the idea that genealogy is ego-driven. Kenneally, however, is trying to push people like me, who are interested in world history, to appreciate how modern genealogy, with its computer networks, can make each of us contributors to the grand story of humanity.

    So, my little ego trip becomes less about me and more about connecting the dots on the big canvas. Add in the potential of DNA science to make its own connections among us, and the history books of the late 21st century might tell a much truer story of the past than the ones we grew up with. (Think Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemmings.)

    OK, but I'll still want to know whether the guy who fell off the Mayflower and survived really was, as I've read, one of my ancestors. That would make me almost famous.

    EvanEvan - Married, three children, two grandchildren, formerly a newspaper journalist, now a public librarian, at all times a board game nut.
    by Allison S | Oct 31, 2016
    Image courtesy of halloweenerrific

    Editor's Note:  Have you checked out The Genealogy Center's monthly E-Zine, Genealogy Gems?  You should!  The content for this post, written by Genealogy Librarian Allison, appeared in the September 30 issue of this year and is the first in a series of articles focusing on holiday customs. 

    Halloween’s background is firmly rooted in the Celtic festival of Samhain, a three-day festival to celebrate the end of the light half of the year beginning on the evening of October 31st.  The Celts split the year into two halves, the light half and the dark half. They observed the end of the dark half on May 1st of each year with Beltane, modern May Day. Two other Celtic seasonal festivals, Imbolc and Lughnasadh, marked the start of spring and fall respectively but were considered less important. Samhain and Beltane carried more significance, since the Celts believed the lines between the living and the dead were blurred at those times. 

    Samhain celebrated the end of the harvest. Animals were slaughtered for provisions for the coming winter. Celebrants lit huge bonfires as rituals to symbolize the holding back of winter. They would carry embers from the communal bonfire to each cold hearth to relight the home fires. Celebrations would acknowledge the importance of the harvest while encouraging raucous behavior from the young men and free-flowing alcohol. Young women would practice divination, often involving apples, to see whom they would marry.

    While Samhain had been around for centuries, it was incorporated into a new holy day by the Catholic Church in 609: “All Saints’ Day,” otherwise known as “All Hallows” or “Hallowmas.” Initially, it was celebrated on May 13th, but by the ninth century it was almost universally celebrated on November 1st. All Saint’s Day began as a commemoration of the martyrs who died for the Church, though later it included all saints, not just martyrs. The following day, November 2nd, was set aside a century later as “All Souls’ Day” to pray for the souls of those in Purgatory. The day before All Saints’ Day was referred to as “All Hallows’ Evening” or “All Hallows’ Eve” (“Hallowe’en” when abbreviated). “Hallowtide” signified all three days together. 

    Several factors led to many of the Halloween traditions as we now know them in the United States. As with any holiday, these traditions have roots in historical events. The Black Death, which terrorized Europe for centuries, brought a morbid fascination with skeletons. With death surrounding the culture, the festival that blurred the lines between the living and the dead found a new home for the obsession of skeletons. Witch hunts, in which thousands of men and women were executed over the centuries, brought fear and added to the dark fascination of light versus dark, good versus evil, and thus became a natural fit with Halloween. 

    Irish and Scottish immigrants brought Halloween to America, which is why no mention of the holiday exists until immigration increased in the 1840s in the wake of the Potato Famine. The Irish brought their custom of the jack-o’-lantern. In the old country, turnips or beets were hollowed out, and a candle was placed inside, mimicking the flashes of light seen in the peat bogs that appeared mysteriously and created suspicion of the supernatural. The name “jack-o’-lantern” refers to a fable about a man named Jack who was left to wander the earth forever after making a deal with the devil. He is Jack of the Lantern. When the American Irish discovered the large pumpkin, they made it the lantern of choice for Halloween. Corn was also incorporated into Halloween based on the large corn crops in America. 

    Another tradition that has roots in the Celtic lore is trick-or-treating. The Celts had two traditions that required people to go door-to-door. The first was “souling.” The poor would go door-to-door, asking for food or money in return for prayers for the dead. Soul cakes became a popular item to give to the poor and leave out for the ghosts. Young adults would also go door-to-door in costumes in a custom called “guising.” They would perform tricks, sing, or tell a story for a sweet treat. 

    In the early twentieth century Halloween became fully adopted by the United States. By 1920, communities had a firm enough grasp on the celebration to make it family-friendly and not a night for boys to terrorize the citizens with pranks. Community Halloween parties and parades began. Trick-or-treating received the endorsement and assistance of local government. It became a holiday for children to have fun and get candy. For youth and adults, it became a night to embrace fear and celebration. People have always had a fascination with things they do not know or understand. Death and the blurred lines between life and death will always have an attraction for the living. Halloween has become the holiday in which it is socially acceptable to celebrate them. 

    Shared with permission.  Each issue of Genealogy Gems examines a variety of topics related to family history.  To view previous editions or to subscribe, click here.

    by Marra H | Oct 30, 2016

    • Author Visit:  Matt de la Pena
    • Main Library, Theater
    • November 1, 2016
    • 6:30 pm
    • Free

    Tuesday evening, author Matt de la Pena will be visiting the Allen County Public Library to share his powerful message about the transformative impact books can have on the lives of young people.  Mr. de la Pena writes for teens and children, and was awarded the Newbery Medal in in January of this year for his book Last Stop in Market Street. 

    De la Pena is an incredible speaker, with a moving personal story and true dedication to the potential that words can unlock in young people.  He will be signing books after the event.  There will be a selection of books available to be purchased for this purpose.

    Thank you to the Friends of the Allen County Public Library for this opportunity!


    by Cathy B | Oct 28, 2016
    In addition to all the books you would expect in the Art, Music & Media stacks (Rembrandt, Picasso, musicals, histories of music and dance), you may be surprised to find that there is a section of games and puzzles!  Logic games, math games, video games, crossword puzzles, math puzzles, even magic.  I’ve pulled a small sampling of books that are available and, for good measure, have included photos of the actual stacks for your perusal.


    Kakuro for Dummies by Andrew Heron. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 2005

    I love Kakuro!  I did Sudoku for a while but then a friend introduced me to Kakuro.  KakuroHaven’t turned back.  That said, I don’t really enjoy the really hard levels – I’m just not that competitive.  Also, I do have a ‘cheat sheet’ with all the possible combinations of addends for particular numbers.  Let me try to explain:

    Kakuro is a number version of crossword puzzle.  The skeleton of the puzzle is exactly the same as a crossword skeleton.  Instead of looking for words one looks for possible numbers that add up to the given sum printed outside but next to the beginning of each line of blocks. And then the answers have to fit across and down. And there are certain limitations, like no number over 9 or repeat numbers. Hard to explain.  Perhaps you can google it?

    It’s not really a math puzzle I don’t think because it’s really only addition of small numbers.  It’s just different.  Try it.  You may love it!  (You may not!)

    Most unfortunately some “dummy” (as referenced in the title) has filled in several of the easy puzzles in this book.  Hey, Greg, could we get a new one?

    Virtuosos of Juggling, From the Ming Dynasty to Cirque du Soleil, by Karl-Heinz Ziethen and Alessandro Serena, Renegade Juggling, 2003

    Virtuosos of JugglingAccording to the publishers, Renegade Juggling, this book fills “the void regarding books on the subject of international master jugglers.” It “is the comprehensive historical account of performance jugglers from the past 4,043 years, featuring jugglers who reached the pinnacle of the art-form and captivated audiences in many of the world’s grandest venues.”

    A partial listing of chapter titles can give a brief overview of what is in store:  From Sacred to Profane, The Ring and the Stage, The Myth and the Emulation, Juggling in Russia and China.


    Dumbstruck:  A Cultural K, A Cultural History of Ventriloquism by Steven Connor. Oxford Press, 2000Dumbstruck

    Steven Connor is Professor of Modern Literature and Theory, School of English and Humanities, Birkbeck College, University of London.

    He follows the study of the disembodied voice “from its first recorded beginnings in ancient Israel and Greece.”  “…this is much more than an archaeology of one of the most regularly derided but tenaciously enduring of popular arts. It is also a series of virtuoso philosophical and psychological reflections on the problems and astonishments, the raptures and absurdities of the unhoused voice.”



    A Gardner's Workout, Training the Mind and Entertaining the Spirit by Martin Gardner., AK Peters, Ltd, 2001

    Gardner's WorkoutMr. Gardner wrote the “Mathematical Games” column for Scientific American for 25 years.  A Garner’s Workout in a compilation of 41 pieces written in various academic journals and popular magazines since that time. 

    “Providing the tools to furnish our all-too-sluggish minds with an athletic workout, Gardner’s problems foster an agility of the mind as they entertain.”

    Mr. Gardner covers “a wide range of topics:  games of chance, word ladders and mathematical word play games, tiling puzzles, magic squares, computer and calculator ‘magic’ tricks.”

    A smattering of chapters:  The Opaque Cube, The Propositional Calculus with Directed Graphs, Steiner Trees on a Checkerboard, Six Challenging Dissection Tasks, The Asymmetric Propeller Theorem, The Universe and the Teacup.

    For those among us who do not find ‘mathematical games’ to be an oxymoron this book should be a treat indeed!

    The Art of Evolve by Phil Robb, Insight Editions, 2015, Introduction by Phil Robb & Chris Ashton

     If you are a gamer, particularly one who plays hunting types of games you may be conversant with Evolve.Art of Evolve  You may play Evolve. 

    “A thrilling monster-hunting game unlike any other, Evolve offers groundbreaking multiplayer and epic boss-battle experiences.”

    In this high quality, coffee table book the developers of the game take you from concept pitch through final roll out with concept sketches and full blown artwork along with commentary from the artists and developers. 

    The Art of Evolve is the essential companion to the exhilarating monster-hunting adventure bound to ensnare gamers worldwide.”


    THE PATTERN IN THE CARPET, A PERSONAL HISTORY WITH JIGSAWS, Margaret Drabble, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009

    Pattern in the CarpetMargaret Drabble is a Dame of the British Empire.  She has written seventeen novels as well as biographies.  She also edited the fifth and sixth editions of The Oxford Companion to English Literature.  Her name on this book on jigsaw puzzles was what drew me to investigate further.  It is now on my “to read” list. 

    From the dust jacket:  “Margaret Drabble weaves her own story into a history of games, in particular of jigsaws, which have offered and her and many others “a soothing relief” from melancholy and depression. We learn that jigsaws began as dissected maps used as a teaching tool in the late eighteenth century, that the young Queen Victoria once stayed up until 11:30 p.m. assembling a puzzle with her government ministers; that in American following the 1929 stock market crash there was a boom in puzzle manufacturing…. Drabble shares her thoughts on the importance of childhood play, on art and writing, on aging and memory.  And she does so with her customary intelligence, energy, and wit.  This is a memoir like no other.”

    Cruciverbalism, A Crossword Fanatic’s Guide to Life in the Grid, Stanley Newman, Collins, 2006

    Stanley Newman is the crossword editor for Newsday and he holds the world’s record for the fastest Cruciverbalismcompletion of a New York Times crossword.  Some of the topics covered in this little book are:  “Why it’s become a tradition for daily newspaper puzzles to increase in difficulty during the week, common solving mistakes, why you shouldn’t feel guilty about consulting reference works, the hidden rules of the grid that will make you a better clue sleuth”

    “You’ll even discover a philosophy for approaching crosswords that, come to think of it, works pretty well for life, too – and makes it a lot of fun!”

    This is one of several books on crossword puzzles you can find in our stacks.


    Block City, How To Build Incredible Worlds In MINECRAFT, Kirsten Kearney, Abrams, 2015

    Block CityI began looking at this book thinking I would hurry through it – the title is pretty self-explanatory, right?  Wrong.  As I began thumbing through the pages I found I was going to have slow down and get a grasp on this book.  I was even afraid I might end up being pulled into Minecraft world.  (You see, I do on occasion get addicted to a video game – Pokemon Puzzle League, Tetris, Candy Crush {happy to announce I broke free of that one cold turkey the day before Thanksgiving 2015}). 

    Block City is most definitely a how-to book.  Thumbing through the pages I find directions on how to build such things as cities, freighter ship, palaces, holographic signage and Chernobyl, 2015.   Also lamp posts, Andromeda, a gothic cathedral, whole cities and fantasy kingdoms.  But I found a very philosophical bent in the foreword by Julian Gough:

    “In Minecraft we’re in the world of Plato’s essential forms: the sheep are the essence of sheep, the mountains are the essence of mountains.  The human imagination fills in all the details.  Minecraft is in some ways a philosophical world in which everything has been reduced to an essence.  To its simplest form.”

    “Most games re-create, in their virtual worlds, all the stuff we play games to escape. They’re full of people, things, bosses, terror, tasks, fear, status anxiety…But in creative mode, Minecraft lets us feel alive by playing.  Not playing at killing. Playing at playing.”

    In each section we are introduced to the ‘builder’ of the creation at hand and some background.  There are principles of design, tips and detailed instructions for building in general and building specific.  An excellent reference and helper, among the many in the stacks, for anyone interested in getting involved in Minecraft!


    The Rise of the Indian Rope Trick, How a Spectacular Hoax Became History, Peter Lamont, Thunder’s Mouth Press, 2004

    In the Indian rope trick “a rope snakes into the air.  A boy climbs the rope and when he gets to the top – he vanishes.  At once homespun, philosophical, and free of apparent gadgetry, the trick has enthralled Rise of the Indian Rope Trickgenerations of magic lovers in the West.”  But it has never existed.  It was a hoax perpetrated by an amateur magician in 1890 and printed in the Chicago Tribune.  It was later admitted to be false but the legend continued to spread throughout the world and throughout time.  Peter Lamont “explores how easily people will believe stories that are fed to them as truth despite experience, intuition, and the laws of nature.”

    “Peter Lamont, the winner of the Jeremy Dalziel prize in British history, is a research fellow at Edinburgh University specializing in the history, theory, and performance of magic.  He has traveled to India in search of the legendary Indian rope trick, performed as a magician and psychic, and has appeared at the Magic Castle in Hollywood.” (Jacket)  

    These are but a tiny fraction of the books on our shelves that delve into games, magic, puzzles and the popular arts.  Here's a glimpse at some of the rest:

    Game and Puzzle collage

    by Sara P | Oct 26, 2016

    Stephen King discussion titles

    I have been an avid reader from a young age. Visiting the Georgetown Branch Library growing up was always such a thrilling experience for me. Throughout middle school, I would often be the last person in the house up at night as I would stay up late to read long after everyone else had gone to sleep. Stephen King’s short story collection, Night Shift, was probably not the best choice to read that late -- every creak and groan in the house scared me to death. But I was hooked as his writing pulls you in! The tingles of fear and dread are like a book high. A friend of mine in high school saw that I was reading The Stand and had asked breathlessly, “Is it the uncut version?!” Obviously the correct answer was yes, and I’m glad it was true. I honestly didn’t know there had been an edited version which is shunned by many King devotees (or as King would call one: Constant Reader).

    Upon becoming a librarian, I had always dreamed about hosting a Stephen King Book Club. Originally I wasn’t sure if there would be enough fans to make such a club viable; luckily, there are! In 2016, the Stephen King Book Club has been meeting monthly at the Georgetown Branch (where I now work). Everyone is welcome to attend - we have a core group of several adults and have a few teen members also. We assign a title to read each month, but you are more than welcome to come even if you haven’t read (ever or recently) or finished the book - though there will likely be spoilers.

    Most of King’s writing can be classified as horror, but our selection for November is something with wider appeal: 11/22/63. We are meeting on 11/22, so that book was the obvious choice. It tells the story of a man who goes back in time in attempts to prevent John Kennedy’s assassination on that date.

    James Franco starred in a recent miniseries adaptation of 11.22.63 (available on DVD for 7-day checkout) if you prefer to watch your King instead of read. There are a multitude of movie and TV adaptations of King’s works, which usually tend to make their way into our book club discussions as well. We read Misery last month, so there was a lot of talk about Kathy Bates’ Oscar-winning performance as Annie Wilkes.

    We always have a great time at book club. There are so many interconnected characters and and fictional towns in his oeuvre -- it is always fun to try to pick them out. We have members who have read every one of his titles, and new readers just starting out on the King journey. If you know any King fans, please let them know about our meetings. We’d love to see you at the Georgetown Branch Library!

    by Erik M | Oct 25, 2016


    As we entered into our 7th month of operation, the ACPL’s Community Radio Station has continued to hit our marks in the community.  We added a second bay antenna to the mast at IPFW, which improves our signal quality for most areas.  We are not allowed by FCC law to reach more than 25 kilometers (15.5 miles) and we are very, very close to that.  Our next step is to purchase a digital signal processor to further enhance our sound quality.  Jaime Till, chief engineer at Magic 95 has volunteered to “dial it in” once we install it.  It’s another nice example of community coming together to assist in our growth.

    We are now providing audio on demand with two weeks worth of programming (both talk and music) via Radio Free America.  They are hosting this service free of charge to all LPFM stations.  The IT department has provided a link to the WELT page on the ACPL website.  The IT department is still looking into the possibility to store podcasts of the talk programs that we create on the website with more content description.

    Our Programming Committee is slowly coming together.  It will consist of a few community leaders as well as 4 DJs from the talk and music side of WELT-LP.  The purpose of the committee is to evaluate the current programming schedule and see what is or is not working, as well as rearranging the schedule to make the station more marketable.  All of the WELT-LP DJs have been told about this and are on board with the possible changes.

    We’ve also been working with the League of Women Voters to create information PSAs to educate residents about early voting, what they need for identification and so on. 

    In the coming months, we will be hosting another mixer for the DJs and planning our 1 year anniversary.  Before we signed on, I had anticipated that we would lose 30-40% of our DJs and would start the growth again.  Frankly, we have had a 95% retention rate among the DJs.  It really points to how vital, valuable and viral this service is to the community.  And we’ve only just begun.

    by Becky C | Oct 21, 2016
    You know ACPL's annual Author Fair is just around the corner, right?  Have you ever considered writing as a career?  We've got you covered!  Here's a quick look at some new titles recently added to our collection.  Click on a book cover to check availability — it’s as easy as that!

    Mastering Suspense Structure and Plot
     Story Genius
     Why Write
     Write the Perfect Book Proposal
     Magic Words
     Accidental Life
     Jane Austen Writers Club
     The Kite and the String

    What's especially wonderful is that there are a lot more titles to choose from!  I used a variety of subject searches for this post:  AuthorshipCreative WritingFiction Technique , Journalism, Playwriting, Television Plays Technique.

    Is there a book that you've found particularly helpful?  If so, please share the author and title information in the Comments!

    Becky CBecky likes to read … A LOT. When she’s not reading, she likes to pretend that she can garden. Her thumb has no hint of green whatsoever but luckily her plants are forgiving. Her favorite books are The Shannara series by Terry Brooks.
    by Becky C | Oct 19, 2016
    The RidgeWhy would someone build a lighthouse in the middle of the woods?  A curious landmark for years, given its location in an isolated stretch of eastern Kentucky, the strange, pulsing light in the abandoned mining country hasn’t warranted much attention until recently.  The creation of a large-cat sanctuary nearby changes things, however.  Wyatt French, builder of the lighthouse, is not happy that the sanctuary will bring visitors to his neck of the woods; Audrey Clark, owner of the sanctuary, is not happy that the lighthouse illuminates the area so brightly.  Things come to a head when French places cryptic calls to deputy sheriff Kevin Kimble and local journalist Roy Darmus before committing suicide.  He wants Kimble to investigate his suicide and he wants Darmus to keep the light on.

    LOVED this book!!!  Part ghost story, part mystery, all thriller.  The mystery hooked me – why was the town drunk obsessed with accidents occurring within the vicinity of  Blade Ridge, why was he terrified of the dark, and why did he kill himself when he obviously didn’t want to?  The supernatural feel was perfect – an eerie blue flame that appears to a select few, the reaction of the cats to their new home, the troubled history Darmus discovers as he researches the maps and photos French had pinned up on his unfinished walls.  I could not put this book down.

    What's the spookiest book you've read?  What did you love about it?

    Becky CBecky likes to read … A LOT. When she’s not reading, she likes to pretend that she can garden. Her thumb has no hint of green whatsoever but luckily her plants are forgiving. Her favorite books are The Shannara series by Terry Brooks.
    by Evan | Oct 17, 2016
    GettysburgWith talk of a second American Civil War in the air earlier this year (google "civil war" clinton trump), maybe I just had to read another book about Gettysburg, had to remind myself that our country has been through worse times, had to remember that eventually it pulled itself imperfectly together again. 

    In Gettysburg:The Last Invasion, Allen C. Guelzo superbly blends both details and grand themes from the high drama of 1863. Throughout, his emphasis is on the terrible impact the battle, and the war, had on people who experienced it.

    Among many sobering questions Civil War books arouse in me is whether there was a way slavery could have been quickly eliminated without the war. I still haven't found a convincing answer that it could. Even with emancipation, African Americans were soon reduced to peonage in the South and widespread discrimination in the North. And, after the war, it was the same generation of Americans who soon completed the violent subjugation of the remaining native tribes in the West. 

    Compared to that kind of trauma, Clinton vs. Trump feels tame. Even compared to the economic crisis of the 1930s, all the current noise about jobs and taxes and income disparities and government regulation sounds tinny.  

    Nonetheless, the political divide is stark, the worst in my memory, which includes the 1960s. At that time, there were strong feelings about civil rights and the Vietnam War, but the political center felt much stronger. Now it really does feel as though the country is cracking in half politically, even if that doesn't cause another actual civil war. 

    So it seems to me we need to remember the question that Abraham Lincoln raised in his Gettysburg Address and is movingly recalled by Guelzo: whether a nation whose rulers are chosen by the people can indeed long endure. That means that regardless how the upcoming election turns out, the tens of millions of scared and/or angry American voters -- myself included -- will show their truest patriotism by taking a lot of deep breaths, staying involved with the process and reaching out to those on the other side as much as possible. 

    Easy to say, I know. But a lot better than going back to Cemetery Hill. 

    EvanEvan - Married, three children, two grandchildren, formerly a newspaper journalist, now a public librarian, at all times a board game nut.
    by Kay S | Oct 14, 2016
    Yes, it's time to add more books to that TBR pile - time to make that list of books even longer! Here are a few books due to be released between October 15 and November 16, 2016.
    Historical Romance
     h_maxwell Cathy Maxwell
    A Date at the Altar
    Marrying the Duke series
    October 25
     h_miles Rachael Miles
    Tempting the Earl
    The Muses Salon
    October 25
     h_shupe Joanna Shupe
    The Knickerbocker Club series
    October 25
    Historical Fiction
    hf_benson  Jacquelyn Benson
    The Smoke Hunter
    November 3
    Contemporary Romance/Mainstream Fiction
    Donna Everhart
    The Education of Dixie Dupree
    October 25 
    Debbie Mason
    Mistletoe Cottage
    Harmony Harbor Series
    Contemporary Romance
    October 25
     c_knight Ginger McKnight-Chavers
    In The Heart of Texas
    Contemporary Romance
    October 25
    Mystery/Thriller/Suspense/Romantic Suspense
    m_ashenden  Jackie Ashenden
    In Bed with the Billionaire
    Nine Circles series
    Romantic Suspense
    November 1
     m_barclay Linwood Barclay
    The Twenty-Three
    Promise Falls Trilogy series
    November 1
    Anne Calhoun
    Going Deep
    Alpha Ops series
    November 1
     m_connelly Michael Connelly
    The Wrong Side of Goodbye
    Harry Bosch series
    November 1
    Lena Gregory
    Death at First Sight
    Bay Island Psychic Mystery series
    November 1
     28220762 Iris Johansen
    Roy Johansen
    Night Watch
    Kendra Michaels series
    October 25
     28220732 Hank Phillippi Ryan
    Say No More
    Jayne Ryland series
    November 1
     m_sandford John Sandford
    Escape Clause
    Virgil Flowers series
    October 18
    Paranormal/Science Fiction/Fantasy/Urban Fantasy
    p_brom  Brom
    Lost Gods
    October 25
     p_marillier Juliet Marillier
    Den of Wolves
    Blackthorn and Grim series
    November 1
     p_neumeir Rachel Neumeier
    Mountain of Kept Memory
    November 8
     p_sagara Michelle Sagara
    Cast in Flight
    Chronicles of Elantra
    October 25
     p_singh Nalini Singh
    Archangel's Heart
    Guild Hunter series
    November 1
    Young Adult
    ya_yoon  Nicola Yoon
    The Sun Is Also a Star
    November 1 
     ya_young Suzanne Young
    All in Pieces
    November 8
     32177222 Bettina Davis
    One Valencia Lane
    October 25
    Inspirational Romance/Fiction
     i_carr Patrick W. Carr
    The Shattered Vigil
    Darkwaters Saga series
    November 1 
     i_cossette Connilyn Cossette
    Shadow of the Storm
    October 18
     i_evans Marianne Evans  
    November 1
     i_hern Ruth Logan Herne  
    Home on the Range
    October 18

    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 Craig B | Oct 12, 2016

    cover of Bernard Malamud's 1966 novel, The FixerBook Review:  The Fixer by Bernard Malamud

    "People are sitting at a table having dinner, that's all, but at the same time … their lives are being torn apart."

                -Anton Chekov

    Something has broken, is being “torn apart” in this book, this 1967 Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Bernard Malamud, The Fixer.  As in Chekov’s plays, things are falling apart (in Malamud’s story it is specifically czarist Russia that is falling apart) and Yakov Bok, a.k.a Yakov Shepsovitch, a.k.a. The Fixer, (also as in Chekhov our character has at least three names) finds himself at the dread center of it all with a bag of tools unfitted to the task.  Yakov wonders (almost endlessly) if it’s his luck, his mistakes, but what becomes more and more clear as the novel winds on is that, though something is indeed broken, it is not with our main character.  There’s something in the system, and not just the political system of Russia, it’s bigger than that; it’s the brutality of man to man, the lies we tell ourselves, human brokenness that lives on the inside and there’s nothing The Fixer with his awls and wood saw can do.

    Through the story of one man, Yakov Bok/The Fixer, Malamud’s novel casts the pogroms of Russia in a historical and metaphorical light that is startling.  In The Fixer there lives a telling of the suffering of the Jewish people in Russia permeated with a seeming foreknowledge of the Holocaust, not to mention, the metaphorical connections of one persecuted Jewish carpenter to another.  The world is broken, things are falling apart; a somewhat common literary theme, but unlike in many stories (i.e. Chekov or even Malamud’s first book, that most-American of novels, The Natural, boasting a film adaptation starring Robert Redford) … there’s very little dinner. 

    by Craig B | Oct 07, 2016

    album cover for Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam's I Had a Dream That You Were MineI picked I Had a Dream That You Were Mine to listen to from the “Must List” pages of Entertainment Weekly (available at your local library) and then immediately downloaded it from Hoopla (available at your local library) and then wrote this blog post to share my immensely pleasant surprise at the nature of the album (blog also available at your local library … but you know that, you’re reading it) with its prickly lo-fi production and daring dynamism (listen to the first track, “A 1000 Times,” I think you’ll see what I mean) that wormed its way into my heart and made me glow a little.  But then I like Vampire Weekend (also available at your local library) of which Rostam was once a part.  What else was to be expected?

    Suggested Use: Cooking for someone else?  Consider chopping vegetables and caramelizing onions to this album.  With its delicate nuances and disregard for decorum it seems like just the thing for a Saturday afternoon spent brandishing a knife and indulging in an early glass of the 2009 Burgundy you bought to go with dinner (not available at your local library).

    by Becky C | Oct 03, 2016
    Ever wonder what library staff like to read?  Wonder no more!  Here's a quick look at some books we've enjoyed this month.  Click on a book cover to check availability — it’s as easy as that!

    Three Weeks to Say Goodbye
     The Big Picture
     Isaacs Storm
     H is for Hawk
     The Swarm
     The Seascape Tattoo
     The Killer Angels
     Underground Railroad
     Reclaiming Conversation  Cutting for Stone
     Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
     In a Dark Dark Wood
     The Woman in Cabin 10
     Symphony for the City of the Dead
     It Wasnt Always Like This
     The Great American Whatever
     Most Dangerous
     Devoted  Hidden
       Whispers in the Mist

    Becky CBecky likes to read … A LOT. When she’s not reading, she likes to pretend that she can garden. Her thumb has no hint of green whatsoever but luckily her plants are forgiving. Her favorite books are The Shannara series by Terry Brooks.
    by Kay S | Sep 30, 2016
    "Well, we dig dig dig
    Well, we dig in our mine the whole day through...
    Heigh-ho, heigh-ho
    It's off to work we go
    We keep on singing all day long
    - Snow White, Disney

    Once upon a time Mary Jo Putney wrote one of my alllll time favorite books - The Rake -Mary Jo Putney
    with one of my allll time favorite heroes, Reginald Davenport. Hence, it always saddens me when one of my old faithful authors of one of the bestessst books ever presents me with a book which is not up to her standards. Or, at least what I expect from her/him. Once a Soldier is the first book in Mary Jo Putney's Rogues Redeemed series.

    Plain speaking. I had a hard time finishing this book. It started out promising. There is the requisite set-up for future books in the series. We get to meet a number of men who just scream "hero." They are in a prison awaiting execution set for the next day. While imprisoned, they have a "I would do this if I were to live" moment. Well, as luck would have it, our intrepid hero Will Masterson finds a way out of the prison, and they all escape. They separate, but vow to always keep in contact with each other. I enjoyed this set-up and I was very much interested in reading Will's story - but it went downhill from there.

    Napoleon has just been sent to Elba and the war seems to be over. The troops are returning to their homelands, hoping that everything hasn't been destroyed in the process of Napoleon's march to conquer all. Major Lord Will Masterson, our hero, wants to return home; but before he can, he is sent on a mission by one of the guys from the prison. He is assigned a regiment of soldiers from the little kingdom of San Gabriel. He is to return with them to their country and report on the conditions of San Gabriel. It seems that Great Britain will help out this little country if it has been devastated by Napoleon's trampling through. I guess Great Britain wouldn't have its own financial problems at the time and they could help restore little San Gabriel. Anyway, Will leads San Gabriel's sons back home - at least some of them. When he arrives in San Gabriel he finds destruction, he also finds that the ruling monarch and the monarch's heir have been taken captive or killed or something. Anyway, the king and his son are missing, and they have left the throne in the arms of a regent with Alzheimer’s and an underage princess. But do not fear my little Petunia's, for you see San Gabriel has been saved by the amazonian illegitimate English woman - Athena Markham. Athena has been Princess Sophia's friend and advisor for a long time - Amazon Athena is also our heroine.

    Well, Will and Amazon Athena are attracted to each other right away, but before they can really connect there must be the traditional San Gabriel welcome home feast and celebration with music, cheese and Sangria. The Sangria is the best in all Europe, made right here in little San Gabriel. Their wine is better!

    Will and Athena wiggle their eyebrows at each other, but before they can go any further Will must call a city council meeting and listen to boring talks on  how to rebuild San Gabriel. He must ponder Great Britain's role in rebuilding San Gabriel - and there is the wine to consider.

    Will and Athena gaze into each others eyes, then because Will was an engineer he goes off to the town's waterwheel and with the help of the ex-soldier's they rebuild it. While they are there they have a look at the river - you just never know when you may need to widen a river. After-all you may need to ship wine up/down that river.

    Will and Athena touch each other, then they talk about the production of wine. Athena tells Will she saved allllll of the town's wine by putting it in some caves and then sealing the caves. Will must look at the caves, he is an engineer after all.

    Will and Athena smile at each other, but then Will decides to rebuild the bridge. Will and the ex-soldiers of San Gabriel rebuild the town's bridge, then they celebrate with wine and cheese. Will's hairs on the back of his neck are twitching.

    Will looks at the destroyed vineyards. Why, he has a friend whose family owns vineyards, just over in the next country, over the hills, over the mountains, over the rivers. He sends for his friend Justin. Justin brings saplings. Justin gazes at Princess Sophia, Sophia gazes at Justin - oh dear it's the Princess falling for a commoner plot. It's also a secondary romance thrown in at a time when the main romance isn't working. Why isn't it working? Because it's time for Will to plant some saplings. Will's neck is still twitching.

    Justin mentions Will is a lord. Athena throws a hissy fit because she hatessssss all nobles. She goes off in a huff, they reconcile. But Athena knows she is not good enough for Will. Will's neck says something is wrong. Athena and Will have some wine and cheese - San Gabriel's wine is the bestest.

    Will and Athena talk. Will and Amazon Athena blow up the sealed caves. The wine is saved!!! Now, the little town can prosper!! But first let's have some wine and cheese. Hey, let's go on a picnic!! And let's take some wine and cheese. Wait a minute, Will's having that pesky hair/neck problem again! And, it's not from all the wine and cheese - it's from some remnants of the French army. After a brief kerfuffle with some renegade French soldiers we find out there's a plan afoot to invade San Gabriel. The evilllll French commander plans to  marry Princess Sophia and get the wine - not necessarily in that order. Will, Athena, Justin and Sophia must come up with a plan to stop hundreds of French soldiers from invading their little city. Picnic over!

    Will and Athena do the whankee-roo. Farewell my love, I must be off to blow up the mountain and stop the invading French. I must gather the townsfolk and do some more talking. Even being outnumbered a gazillion to one, Will defeats the nefarious French wine pilferer.

    There is more celebration! Break out the wine and cheese!! Welcome the missing king and heir back!!! More wine!! More cheese!!! Justin gets the thumbs up to court the Princess becausssseeee he can make wine!!! Will overcomes Athena's "I can't marry you" routine. They all have some wine and cheese. The end.

    Sign. I could not connect with this story. After reading page after page of lessons on "how to rebuild a city destroyed by war," I could feel my eyes glazing over. There wasn't any chemistry between Will and Athena. Too much of the storytelling was spent on other things and not on the romance. This could have been a travelogue book on wine country. Big disappointment.

    Time/Place: After the first defeat of Napoleon, San Gabriel (it doesn't exist)

    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 Evan | Sep 26, 2016
    Evans Recommendations

    Whether you like your popular science books "dry"or "wet," there are plenty of good ones to choose from these days. By dry, I mean a book that mostly tries to explain a difficult subject; by wet, I mean one that gives a lot of attention to the living, human side of the science. My preference is dry, but I've been working my way through four pop sci books this month, and I'll start with the decidedly wet one I already finished.

    Janna Levin's very human Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space is maybe 10 percent about black holes science and 90 percent about quirky, brilliant black hole scientists. Working through one adversity after another -- theoretical, technical, financial and, especially, emotional -- they put together over 30 years an amazing pair of gigantic devices that last year reportedly heard the unfathomably faint and brief sound ripple from the collision of two black holes in a galaxy far, far away. Levin herself is a black hole scientist, but in this project she writes little about how the universe works and much about how imperfect human beings try to understand it. 

    Jane Goodall's Seeds of Hope: Wisdom and Wonder from the World of Plants is a very personal plea by a famous zoologist who dearly loves botany. She urges people to appreciate plants on both emotional and practical levels. Like many scientists, she warns that we are rapidly destroying plant species at the possibly imminent peril of our own. 

    Somewhere between wet and dry is Frans de Waal's Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? The renowned primatologist's latest book is full of the recent findings about animal intelligence, but it's also full of stories about scientists believing a lot of stupid things in regard to animals' abilities.

    One of my favorites is that scientists said elephants were too dumb to get bananas that were too high to reach with their trunks. This ruling was based on the fact the elephants would not use a stick to reach them as some other animals do. But an intelligent human realized that holding sticks confuses elephants' sensory perception. When sturdy blocks were put in the elephants' reach, they pushed them to spots underneath the bananas, raised themselves by putting their forelegs on the blocks, and got their reward. Plenty smart.

    My current favorite, however, is Sean Carroll's The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself. Monty Python's Meaning of Life this is not. Even with hardly any math, it is a big book on the big stuff, and I'm admittedly taking a lot of time to work through it. I'm thinking about actually buying it, which, for this life-long library addict, is high praise.

    Carroll is a physicist, but he demonstrates a deep understanding of many other challenging subjects, including philosophy and brain science. Ultimately, though, the book is less about the knowledge he conveys and more an explanation of why the scientific process itself -- for all its uncertainties -- is our best hope to understand our universe, our world and ourselves. 

    EvanEvan - Married, three children, two grandchildren, formerly a newspaper journalist, now a public librarian, at all times a board game nut.
    by Kay Spears | Sep 23, 2016
    What a nice read! In A Gentleman Never Tells, Eloisa James presents us with a charming short story. For those of you following along, this one is loosely connected to the Essex sisters, and I do mean loosely - so don't go wracking your brains trying to Eloisa Jamesremember. Just sit back and enjoy.

     I am always impressed with an author when they can come up with a good short story and Ms. James as given us a full, well-written tale with characters who seem to be fully developed. On top of that, the romance part of the book made me smile. This story was a delight.

    We have Oliver Berwick, a bachelor who has inherited an outrageous niece. His brain-think while his niece is nattering on was pretty funny. I'm hoping we will see more of this funny teenager in the future. Anyway, Oliver and his niece have been "invited" to a house party. At the house party he becomes immediately interested in Lizzie, Lady Trout. Lizzie is a widow and she wants to stay that way. She has hidden herself away from people; her protection is her books. In her books she finds a place where she belongs and there isn't anyone there to humiliate or degrade her.

    Lizzie has not had very good luck in the man department. Her husband died in his mistress' arms. Now while that's bad enough, from the very beginning of her marriage her husband made it very clear that he wanted nothing to do with her. He even blamed Lizzie for his deficiency in the Mr. Toad department. So, in this case we have a legitimate virgin widow. Needless to say, Lizzie viewed herself as a failure. Hurt and dejected, she returned to her father for support. Her father's reply was also rejection, telling her she had to return to her cheese-wad husband. So, Lizzie returned to live with her husband, who in turn lived with his mistress. Not only did he return to his mistress, he was very public about it. It is not at all surprising that Lizzie has become absorbed into the world which books can create. It is also this Lizzie who Oliver falls in love with and presides to help Lizzie see herself as she actually is.

    I adored Oliver and Lizzie. They brought out the best in each other. There was plenty of humor throughout this short story. Oliver had a wonderful sense of humor, he was kind and any woman would easily fall in love with him. Lizzie had more angst in her life and was pretty down on herself in the beginning. But under Oliver's gentle hand, she blossoms. She turns into a woman who knows what she wants, knows she has more to offer people and decides on her own that Oliver is the right person for her. Ms. James as created a very memorable couple in just a few short pages. Best of all there's not enough space for a prolonged "I can't marry you because..."

    The secondary characters are also fun. Lizzie's sister Cat had a very strong personality. I do admit there were times when Cat almost journeyed into overbearing territory. But I think Cat was desperately worried about her sister and was trying to help in the only way she knew how. Once again I think it helped that Cat's aggressive behavior was in a short story and not a full-length novel. If she had been given a longer time, she probably would have become an unlikable character. The most enjoyable secondary character in the book was Oliver's niece Hattie. Hattie has quite a personality. She's talkative, funny, witty but also wily. Hattie seems to have a underhanded way of getting what she wants and I hope we see more of her in future books.

    Overall - I highly recommend this little gem. It was a fast read, nothing was overdone and the couple hit just the right chord with me.

    Time/Place: England 1826

    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 Craig B | Sep 19, 2016

    cover for Katherine Anne Porter's book, Collected StoriesBook Review:  The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter

    Born in Texas as Callie Russel Porter in 1894, Porter adopted her grandmother’s name (though in alternative spellings) after her first divorce.  As a distant descendant of Daniel Boone and O. Henry (who’s actual last name was indeed Porter) it’s not too hard to see qualities of the intrepid frontiersman and the curious wit in Porter’s writing.  Only moderately educated and first married at sixteen, Porter worked at acting and singing, then journalism and eventually fiction writing.  She went on to a celebrated literary life, teaching at several high profile universities (i.e. Stanford) and winning the National Book Award along with her Pulitzer.  The titular book of this post has become her legacy and in many ways the unofficial memoir of one of the more interesting people of the 20th century.

    I love that in the middle of this 1966 Pulitzer Prize winner, The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter, there is a funny little trilogy of short novels (not funny ha ha, believe me) ostensibly written as a reaction to the authoress’ narrow survival of a flu epidemic in 1918.  The first short novel in this reactionary trilogy, “Old Mortality”, makes sense as a response to surviving sickness thematically and mood-wise, the last in the trilogy “Pale Horse, Pale Rider” could almost be a retelling of what Porter’s survival experience might have been, but the middle story (also the story at the very middle of the book (13 stories before and 13 after)) makes almost no sense at all.  As is my wont, I did not conclude that this abstruseness was due to a slippage of competence in the writer, but an effort to communicate something beyond thematicism, romanticization, and even allegory.  Yes, I think perhaps Porter is trying to tell us something.  So, if I was going to reread this book, I think I would begin with that middle short novel, “Noon Wine”, (or maybe end with it) because I think it perhaps tells us the most about Porter and her values as a writer and/or human and how her work should be read.  Perhaps, however, the important point here, the takeaway, is that I would consider rereading Porter’s book, I thought it was that good.

    On that note, having read 50 years of Pulitzers, I believe it is time for me to start shopping for a cardigan sweater to go along with 1967, our Pulitzer Anniversary Year.

    by Kay S | Sep 16, 2016
    Yes sir my little cowpokes, it's time for a few of those upcoming books. These upcoming releases are scheduled to hit the books stores between September 15 and October 14, 2016. So mark you calendars or keep an eye out, 'cause they're headin' down the trail for you.
    Historical Romance
    Tessa Dare
    Tessa Dare
    Do You Want to Start a Scandal
    Spindle Cove series
    September 27
    S Enoch Suzanne Enoch
    Hero in the Highlands
    No Ordinary Hero series
    October 4
    Hannah Howell
    Hannah Howell
    Highland Chieftain
    The Murrays
    September 27
    Eloisa James Eloisa James
    A Gentleman Never Tells
    Essex sisters short story
    Already out
    Historical Fiction
    Elizabeth Chadwick Elizabeth Chadwick
    The Autumn Throne
    Eleanor of Aquitaine series
    October 4
    Contemporary Romance/Mainstream Fiction
    Colgan Jenny Colgan
    The Bookshop on the Corner
    Contemporary Romance
    September 20
    Sonali Devi Sonali Dev
    A Change of Heart
    Bollywood series
    Contemporary Romance
    September 27
    Nyhan Loretta Nyhan
    All the Good Parts
    September 20
    Jennifer Ryan Jennifer Ryan
    Her Renegade Rancher
    Montana Men series
    Contemporary Romance
    September 20
    Mystery/Thrillers/Suspense/Romantic Suspense
    Heather Graham Heather Graham
    Darkest Journey
    Krewe of Hunters series
    Romantic Suspense
    September 27
    OConnell Carol O’Connell
    Blind Sight
    Kathleen Mallory series
    September 20
    cherie priest Cherie Priest
    The Family Plot
    September 20
    Karin Slaughter Karin Slaughter
    The Kept Woman
    Will Trent series
    September 20
    Anna Snoekstra Anna Snoekstra
    Only Daughter
    September 20
    Joyce Tremel Joyce Tremel
    Tangled Up in Brew
    Brewing Trouble Mystery series
    October 4
    Rebecca Zanetta Rebecca Zanetti
    Deadly Silence
    Blood Brothers
    Romantic Suspense
    October 4
    Paranormal Romance/Fantasy/Science Fiction/Urban Fantasy
    anthology John Joseph Adams, editor
    What the #@&% Is That?: The Saga Anthology of the Monstrous and the Macabre
    September 20
    Andrews Ilona Andrews
    Magic Binds
    Kate Daniels series
    Urban Fantasy
    September 20
    Deborah Blake Deborah Blake
    Dangerously Charming
    Broken Riders series
    Paranormal Romance
    October 4
    Asa Bradley Asa Maria Bradley
    Viking Warrior Rebel
    Viking Warriors series
    Paranormal Romance
    October 4

    J. Lincoln Fenn J. Lincoln Fenn
    Dead Souls
    September 20
    Lynn Kurland Lynn Kurland
    The White Spell
    Nine Kingdoms series
    October 4
    Chris Roberson Chris Roberson
    Urban Fantasy
    October 18
    Diana Rowland Diana Rowland
    Legacy of the Demon
    Kara Gillian
    Urban Fantasy
    October 4
    Blake Kendare Blake
    Three Dark Crowns
    Three Dark Crowns series
    September 20

    Kristin Cast Kristin Cast
    P.C. Cast
    The Scent of Salt and Sand
    An Escaped novella
    October 11

    Bree Despain Bree Despain
    The Immortal Throne
    Into the Dark
    October 1
    Jennifer Niven Jennifer Niven
    Holding up the Universe
    October 4
    Lauren Oliver Lauren Oliver
    Replica series
    October 4

    Scott Westerfeld Scott Westerfeld
    Margo Lanagan
    Deborah Biancotti
    Zeroes series
    Christina Lauren Christina Lauren
    Beautiful series
    October 4
    Inspirational Romance/Inspirational Fiction
    Johnnie Alexander Johnnie Alexander
    When Love Arrives
    Misty Willows series
    September 20
    Jan Drexler Jan Drexler
    Mattie’s Pledge
    The Journey to Pleasant Valley series
    September 20
    Sarah Ello Sara Ella
    October 11
    Michelle Griep Michelle Griep
    The Captive Heart
    October 1
    Charles Martin Charles Martin
    Long Way Gone
    October 4
    Michael Phillips Michael Phillips The Cottage
    Secret of the Shetlands series
    October 4

    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 Craig B | Sep 14, 2016

    cover for Jake Owen's album, American LoveThe newest offering from Jake Owen, American Love, has a lot to do with drinking for ostensibly being about “love.”  Other than that slightly snarky observance I would say that the album innovates pretty comfortably within its own wheelhouse and brings some strong wit to familiar lyrical territory.  Admirable, really.

    Suggested Use: Do your own mechanical work?  Nothing like finishing up a brake job or an oil change to the strains of Jake Owen.  Turns out muttering to yourself and casting around for the half-inch drive ratchet becomes a lot more interesting when the music you’re listening to reminds you of the Friday night football game and a weekend spent driving around in your VW van.

    by Georgean Johnson-Coffey, Manager, Audio Reading Service | Sep 12, 2016
    Bruce  Haines and Cat in the Hat

    In this month’s  Allen County Reads, Bruce Haines, president and general manager of PBS39, shares how libraries have influenced him over the years.  As part of ACPL’s volunteer team, Bruce reads the Sunday  Journal Gazette as it is broadcast live at the Audio Reading Service for those who are print and reading impaired. As libraries have helped Bruce, he now helps our community with his service through the library.  – Georgean Johnson-Coffey, manager, Audio Reading Service

    My mother worked in my elementary school library. It was at a time when, more than books, libraries were moving to multi-service facilities. The room housed film strip projectors, opaque projectors, audio cassette players, slide strips and records, overhead projectors, microfilm. A number of student and teacher needs were addressed on any given day. Of course, the technology has certainly changed and, as the library evolved into a media center, the name has changed, too. Through the years, however, the school’s needs to provide a connection to sources of information, education, inspiration and entertainment remained constant. The library as a community’s “connector” for individual growth and the public good holds true over time.

    In college, I learned that beyond the resources of any one library lies a fraternity of libraries that could loan for your use the book you thought you’d never find. I discovered that it was also OK to know what you didn’t know about finding materials and that asking questions was expected and encouraged. In doing so, you become familiar with not just what you were looking for but also with the organization involved in helping you find that information in the first place. With that understanding, the library has become a source for answers and assistance and not for anxiety. Moving from the written word to music, movies, and now family genealogy, my library experiences are often as multifaceted as the library’s offerings!

    In the research of topics assigned to me for Fort Wayne Quest Club papers over the years, I am impressed by how much material is now available in digital form. Books and documents that would have been difficult to acquire by their age or their origin are now accessible in a most practical and useful format. It improves the ability to examine sources directly rather than depend on a review of that same source by another writer. The information connections available online to us through our library and countless others expand the scope of what can be obtained and extend the value of such original materials, all from the comfort of any computer!

    As a birthday present, my daughter Hannah gave me a copy of Rough Riders: Theodore Roosevelt, His Cowboy Regiment, and the Immortal Charge Up San Juan Hill by Mark Lee Gardner. This book increased my interest in T. Roosevelt, which has now led me to begin reading The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism by Doris Kearns Goodwin. Having read her work on Abraham Lincoln (Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln) I look forward to the immersive journey ahead into this phase of American history!

    Bruce has been the general manager of PBS39 for more than 8 years. PBS39 operates four public television channels and carries Audio Reading Service programming on an audio sub-channel of PBS39-4.