Looking for a book, DVD, CD, or other item? Search our catalog!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Thanksgiving Viewing

Thanksgiving is on Thursday, but if you're not traveling or baking up a storm, then you may want to sit back and watch a Thanksgiving movie or two before then.

There are Christmas movies galore, but not many Thanksgiving ones, a fact that is the subject of a New York Times article by Glenn Kenny, "It’s Time to Talk Turkey About Thanksgiving Films." Kenny reverts back to his childhood, and his annual viewing of the classic, King Kong [DVD KIN].

Here are some titles from our collection to watch by yourself, or with your family.

Capturing the Friedmans. [DVD CAP]

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. [J DVD CHA]

Garfield: Holiday Celebrations. [J DVD GAR]

Home for the Holidays. [DVD HOM]

Planes, Trains and Automobiles. [DVD PLA]

A Danish film, Babette's Feast [DVD BAB] although not about our American holiday, is one of the best films ever about people gathering together for a feast. [Note: if you don't do subtitles, this movie is not for you.]

And here's the clip of the dinner toast from Funny People, which Glenn Kenny mentioned in his article:

Friday, November 17, 2017

Poetry Friday--"Thanksgiving Magic"

Here's to the cooks who will be preparing family feasts next Thursday. Rather than cooks, let's call them "magicians."

To celebrate these culinary magicians, Rowena Bastin Bennett has written a little ditty. It is found in both Merrily Comes our Harvest In: Poems for Thanksgiving (selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins) [J 811 MER] and The Random House Book of Poetry for Children (selected by Jack Prelutsky) [J 811.008 RAN].

Thanksgiving Magic

Thanksgiving Day I like to see
Our cook perform her witchery.
She turns a pumpkin into pie
As easily as you or I
Can wave a hand or wink an eye.
She takes leftover bread and muffin
And changes them to turkey stuffin’.
She changes cranberries to sauce
And meats to stews and stews to broths;
And when she mixes gingerbread
It turns into a man instead
With frosting collar ’round his throat
And raisin buttons down his coat.
Oh, some like magic made by wands,
            And some read magic out of books,
And some like fairy spells and charms
            But I like magic made by cooks!

The Poetry Friday Round-Up for this week is hosted by our Canadian neighbor, Raincity Librarian.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Happy Birthday, Diana Krall

Canadian jazz vocalist, Diana Krall, was born on this day in 1964. With her mellow voice, she has become a Great American Songbook star keeping old jazz and big band standards alive. Her latest CD, Turn Up the Quiet [CD JAZZ KRA] is a prime example with her renditions of Cole Porter's "Night and Day," and Rodgers and Hart's "Isn't It Romantic," among others.

She tackles popular songs from a more recent period in Wallflower [CD JAZZ KRA], where she sings a fabulous medley of "California Dreamin'," "Desperado," "Superstar," and "Alone Again (Naturally)," with Michael Bublé.

We have quite a number of Krall's CDs in our collection, as well as individual songs by Krall on many "duet" albums such as Tony Bennett's Playin' with My Friends: Bennett Sings the Blues [CD MALE VOCALIST BEN].

It is nearing the season for Christmas music, so get ready to sing along with Krall's Christmas Songs [CD HOLIDAY CHR].

Here's wishing Diana Krall a great birthday and many more years of songs!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A Season of Eating

We're fortunate to come from an area where food is abundant and readily available. This fact is, sometimes we tend to forget that others may not be able to avail themselves of the abundance. The New Hampshire Food Bank, based in Manchester, has compiled some statistics that may surprise you. Here's one:
Approximately 10% of all men, women and children in the Granite State are food insecure, meaning they do not know where their next meal will come from.
That's one in ten NH citizens. And yes, there are food insecure people living in Windham!

If you want to do something, contact the Shepherd's Pantry on 1 Church Road in Windham to volunteer your time, or, better yet, make a monetary donation.

Rather than prepare more food than you can possibly eat over Thanksgiving weekend, make a bit less and donate the money you would have paid for another two side dishes, or two extra plates of cookies, or whatever your family and friends don't really need.

Make this coming season of eating food, a season of giving food. A donation to a food bank would be a fine gift for someone who doesn't need another coffee mug or a tie or a "favorite teacher" ornament. The NH Food Bank has special holiday cards for your giftees.

To learn more about food insecurity, look for Food: The New Gold by Kathlyn Gay [YA 338.19 GAY] or watch the DVD A Place at the Table [DVD 338.19 PLA].

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Thanksgiving's Coming!

This romanticized version of "The First Thanksgiving, 1621" was painted by Jean-Leon Gerome Ferris around 1915.

If you haven't planned your Thanksgiving meal, you're running out of time!

For inspiration, borrow one of our many cooking and entertaining books:

Drummond, Ree. The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays: 140 Step-by-Step Recipes for Simple, Scrumptious Celebrations. [641.568 DRU]

Garten, Ina. Make It Ahead: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. [641.555 GAR]

Let's Talk Turkey...And All the Trimmings 100 Delicious Holiday Recipes, Tips, and Ideas from America's Top Magazines. [eBook]

Rodgers, Rick. Thanksgiving 101. [eBook]

Sanna, Ellyn. Thanksgiving. [641.568 SAN]

Stewart, Martha. Holidays: Recipes, Gifts, and Decorations, Thanksgiving & Christmas. [641.568 STE]

If you want to get your kids involved, look for The Berenstain Bears' Holiday Cookbook: Cub-Friendly Cooking with an Adult [J 641.568 BER] or My Very Own Thanksgiving: A Book of Cooking and Crafts by Robin West [J 641.568 WES].

Monday, November 13, 2017

Read It before the Movie Comes Out

You have a long time before The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell [F RIN, LP RIN] comes out in theaters, but if you borrow it now you'll be ahead of the curve.

The screenplay is currently being rewritten for the film that will star Keira Knightley. Knightley signed onto the project back in 2013!

From the book's synopsis, though, it sounds like it'll make a great movie:
Confessions are Rose Baker’s job. A typist for the New York City Police Department, she sits in judgment like a high priestess. Criminals come before her to admit their transgressions, and, with a few strokes of the keys before her, she seals their fate. But while she may hear about shootings, knifings, and crimes of passion, as soon as she leaves the room, she reverts to a dignified and proper lady. Until Odalie joins the typing pool.

As Rose quickly falls under the stylish, coquettish Odalie’s spell, she is lured into a sparkling underworld of speakeasies and jazz. And what starts as simple fascination turns into an obsession from which she may never recover.

Let's hope it's worth the wait!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Poetry Friday--Veterans Day

The Library is closed today and tomorrow for the Veterans Day holiday. Not all veterans engaged in a war, however, for those who did the memories linger for a lifetime. I wish all our veterans peace in their lives and memories.

For today I'm sharing a poem by Randall Jarrell from 1944, ironically titled, "A Lullaby":
A Lullaby

For wars his life and half a world away
The soldier sells his family and days.
He learns to fight for freedom and the State;
He sleeps with seven men within six feet.

He picks up matches and he cleans out plates;
Is lied to like a child, cursed like a beast.
They crop his head, his dog tags ring like sheep
As his stiff limbs shift wearily to sleep.

Recalled in dreams or letters, else forgot,
His life is smothered like a grave, with dirt;
And his dull torment mottles like a fly’s
The lying amber of the histories.

Poetry Friday is being hosted this week at Jama's Alphabet Soup.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

Sensory Issues

You may have come across the term "sensory issues" or "sensory integration issues" with regard to children. These issues are recognized as sensory processing disorder or SPD. So what is SPD? WebMD provides this definition:
Sensory processing disorder is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes in through the senses.

Formerly referred to as sensory integration dysfunction, it is not currently recognized a a distinct medical diagnosis.

Some people with sensory processing disorder are oversensitive to things in their environment. Common sounds may be painful or overwhelming. The light touch of a shirt may chafe the skin.

Others with sensory processing disorder may:
  • Be uncoordinated
  • Bump into things
  • Be unable to tell where their limbs are in space
  • Be hard to engage in conversation or play

Sensory processing problems are usually identified in children. But they can also affect adults. Sensory processing problems are commonly seen in developmental conditions like autism spectrum disorder.

Now imagine a parent who would like to offer a sensitive child the opportunity to take part in a typical pre-holiday activity--visiting with Santa. A trip to the mall, with its lights, sounds, crowds, just won't work.

FLOW has joined with the Nesmith Library in trying to make the Santa experience possible. On December 10 we will be having Santa and Mrs. Claus visit the Library before the facility is open to the general public. A parent may reserve a time for a quiet visit with the "Jolly Old Elf." This event is exclusively for children with SPD or other developmental disabilities. Reservations will be taken beginning Tuesday, November 14. Non-Windham residents may sign up, but will be put on a waiting list.

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Adult Coloring

About two years ago, adult coloring was all the rage with adult coloring books topping many bestsellers list. Interest has waned somewhat, but the opportunities for finding unique free coloring pages have multiplied.

Earlier in 2017, many libraries and museums banded together to make their public domain (copyright expired) collections accessible to those interested in coloring. Click here for a list of free coloring pages.

I'm going to post a few pages to give you an idea of the variety available:

Michigan State University Libraries.

Newberry Library.

Kansas State University Libraries.

Don't ever feel guilty about coloring! It's a way to relax, and, it is a marketable skill! Look at this catalog entry for a kid's graphic novel--the writer, the illustrator, and the colorist are all given credit. Maybe a new career awaits you!

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Dutch Art

The Boston Globe alerted me to the fact that Harvard University's Fogg Art Museum has been given an outstanding collection of Dutch drawings that date from 1590-1630. With other collections of Dutch art in the area, it seems that Boston is now a mecca for those who have an interest in the golden age of Dutch art. Selections from the Harvard collection, donated by George S. Abrams, is now on exhibit at the Fogg Museum in Cambridge. Read more here.

Dutch art and artists of the golden age period, have, not surprisingly, proven to be great subjects for writers of fiction. Here are three:

Chevalier, Tracy. Girl With a Pearl Earring. [F CHE, AB/CD CHE, DVD GIR]

Smith, Dominic. The Last Painting of Sara de Vos. {F SMI, eBook, eAudio]

Vreeland, Susan. Girl in Hyacinth Blue. [F VRE, eBook]

Monday, November 06, 2017

November 6

On this day in 1860, Abraham Lincoln was elected to his first term as President of the United States. November 6 was also the date a President was elected in:

1888 Benjamin Harrison, his only term.

1900 Theodore Roosevelt, his first term.

1928 Herbert Hoover, his only term.

1956 Dwight D. Eisenhower, his second term.

1984 Ronald Reagan, his second term.

2012 Barack Obama, his second term.

Lots of information on U.S. presidents can be found in this recently published book, Our Country's Presidents: A Complete Encyclopedia of the U.S. Presidency by Ann Bausum [J 973.09 BAU].

What else has happened on this day in history?

1528 Cabeza de Vaca "discovered" Texas (although native peoples would dispute that claim).

1854 John Philip Sousa, known as the "March King," was born.

1917 The Bolsheviks revolted in Russia.

1970 Aerosmith performed their first gig at Nipmuc Regional High School in Mendon, Massachusetts. They are reported to have sold 150 million records since that time.

2006 The first post at Kurious Kitty's Kurio Kabinet! Happy 11th anniversary!

Thursday, November 02, 2017

Poetry Friday--It's National Sandwich Day!

Yes! Time to celebrate the mighty sandwich--once a purely lunchtime staple, but now, something to be enjoyed at every meal. Who doesn't love a bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich for breakfast? Or, for dinner, a Reuben sandwich loaded with corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and dripping with Russian or Thousand Island dressing, served on rye (preferably grilled)? One day a year is not enough time for National Sandwich Day!

Of course there are poems about sandwiches! Here's a delicious little one from Pocket Poems selected by Bobbi Katz and illustrated by Marylin Hafner [J 811 POC]:
by Valerie Worth

They always
End up

The soft

The round

Linda at Teacher Dance is playing hostess for this week's Round-Up.

Mousekin's Golden House

Sometimes readers like to revisit some of the books that remain in their childhood memories. One such book is Mousekin's Golden House by Edna Miller [JP MIL]. The book was first published back in 1964! It is long out of print, but we still have a paperback copy on our shelf.

Why is it so memorable? Because it is a sweet story of a field mouse who could be found anywhere in New England. Mousekin comes across a jack-o-lantern that could make a perfect home.

Being as it's November, and jack-o-lanterns have completed their lives as Halloween decorations, it is fun to imagine Mousekin's little adventure taking place in your backyard today. Here are three of the scenes, which were illustrated by the author:

What are some of the favorite books from your childhood?

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

November is Movember!

Think back to November of last year. Did you notice a number of normally clean-shaven men suddenly start sprouting mustaches? They were probably "Mo Bros," that is, men who grew mustaches as part of the Movember movement. Movember was created to make people aware of, and to raise funds for, men's health issues. The movement is not exclusively for men as women are encouraged to raise money through participation in "Move."
Set a distance goal at the start of the month, and walk, run, cycle, swim or row your way to achieving it. You can raise much needed funds for men’s health while you’re at it.

To learn more, check out the Movember website https://us.movember.com/. The Movember Foundation also has a presence on social media.

Have fun with your kids this Movember by making fake mustaches out of paper! Watch the classic I Love Lucy episode, "The Moustache" found on I love Lucy: The Complete Series [DVD TV SERIES I]. You can also borrow one of these from the Library:

Heos, Bridget. Mustache Baby. [JP HEO]

Palatini, Margie. Moosetache. [JP PAL] (Also look for Mooseltoe by the same author.)

Van Draanen, Wendelin. Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary. [J MYS VAN, eBook, eAudio]

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

After the Storm!

Due to the power outage following Sunday/Monday's storm, we were closed all day yesterday. We are open once again with lights, public computers, and WiFi. And, of course, all of our other offerings like books, magazines, musical CDs, etc.

As you can imagine, most of our phone calls this morning run like this, "Are you open?" "Yes." "Do you have power?" "Yes." "Do you have internet???" "YES!"

Many are coming in to use the internet and to charge their devices. We have a dedicated charging station that is free for anyone to use.

If you can't visit us, where else might you find WiFi? Here's an article that may help with your search.

Please stop by!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Celebrating Cats!

Yesterday, September 29, was National Cat Day. Since I don't post on Sundays, we'll celebrate today with these recently published cat picture books for kids:

Bauer, Marion Dane. Little Cat's Luck. [JP BAU]

Bogart, Jo Ellen. The White Cat and the Monk: A Retelling of the Poem "Pangur Bán." [JP BOG]

Cole, Henry. Spot, the Cat. [JP COL]

Cooper, Elisha. Big Cat, Little Cat. [JP COO]

Donaldson, Julia. The Further Adventures of the Owl and the Pussy-Cat. [JP DON]

Grant, Jacob. Cat Knit. [JP GRA]

Kang, A. N. The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon. [JP KAN]

McDonnell, Patrick. The Little Red Cat: Who Ran Away from Home and Learned His ABC's (The Hard Way). [JP MCD]

Vere, Ed. Max at Night. [JP VER]

Wenzel, Brendan. They All Saw a Cat. [JP WEN, eBook]

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Poetry Friday--Sing a Song of Bones

Next Tuesday is Halloween, and one of the big symbols of the holiday is the skeleton. The reason for that is simple: Halloween is the eve of All Hallows Day. All Hallows Day, All Saints Day, All Souls Day, Day of the Dead, and Samhain, all occur on November 1 or 2, and, no matter what tradition they come from, all revolve around the veneration or remembrance of the dead. Once a body has died, the skeletal stage follows closely behind!

We have a number of books about skeletons in our Halloween collection, and quite a few of them are poetry. One skeleton book, which we have as an eBook, is Halloween Forest by Marion Dane Bauer. Rather than rhyming couplets or another metered form, this colorful book about bones is written in unmetered rhyme. It is still highly rhythmic through its use of repetition and playful language. Here's an example:
And hanging from
the branches
are bat bones,
Climbing the trunks
are cat bones.
Snarled in the roots
are rat bones.
The illustrations by John Shelley are visually striking and present a unique view of skeletons and bones. And, in case you haven't read a picture book on a device, let me assure you, you get the same "wow" effect, just in a smaller package:

Happy Halloween!

Join Brenda at Friendly Fairy Tales for this week's Round-Up of poetry links.

The Erie Canal

On this day in 1825 the Erie Canal was officially completed and was opened to shipping. The canal was begun on July 4, 1817. It covered 363 miles from Lake Erie in Buffalo to the Hudson River in Albany. It is second to the Grand Canal in China for its length.

Photo circa 1900, courtesy Library of Congress.

The Erie Canal was an important shipping lane before the rise of the railroads and more than a century before automotive trucking, and the interstate highway system, were developed.

The story of the Erie Canal is found in these books for chldren:

Harness, Cheryl. The Amazing Impossible Erie Canal. [J 977.1 HAR]

Murray, Julie. Erie Canal. [J 974.796 MUR]

Thompson, Linda. The Erie Canal. [J 386.48 THO]

Wednesday, October 25, 2017


On the evening of November 16, the Museum of Science in Boston will be holding a forum titled, "Outbreak: Fighting Disease in a Changing World." This is how it is described:
Human health is connected to the health of the environment and the animals inhabiting it. Viruses that originate in wildlife, such as HIV, Zika, Ebola, and influenza, can infect humans and our livestock and spread rapidly around the globe. Influenza and HIV have killed tens of millions of people every year. What is our role in preventing the next pandemic? How can society work toward reducing our risk? As we approach the 100th anniversary of the Spanish influenza pandemic, what have we learned?

Join us behind the scenes as we develop a forum that will be used in museums and libraries across the country and beyond. Learn about infectious diseases that affect millions of people all over the world and consider how we can apply lessons from diseases we've managed to eradicate. Discuss your ideas with other participants and help the Museum of Science improve this forum.

This program is presented in collaboration with the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History.

Yesterday we looked at World Polio Day. There are many such days each year to make us aware of the wide-spread problem of diseases and their control.

Here are some books you may be interested in reading on the subject of diseases and epidemics:

Barnard, Bryn. Outbreak: Plagues that Changed History. [eBook]

Biddle, Wayne. A Field Guide to Germs. [616.01 BID]

Hays, J. N. Epidemics and Pandemics: Their Impacts on Human History. [614.49 HAY]

Jarrow, Gail. Bubonic Panic: When Plague Invaded America. [YA 614.5732 JAR]

Koontz, Robin Michal. The Science of a Pandemic. [J 614.4 KOO]

McNeil, Donald G., Jr. Zika: The Emerging Epidemic. [eAudio]

Shah, Sonia. Pandemic: Tracking Contagions, from Cholera to Ebola and Beyond. [eAudio]

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Today is World Polio Day

People who were born after the 1950s probably have no idea of how scary a disease poliomyelitis was in the first half of the 20th century. In the 1950s it reached epidemic proportions. Back then parents kept their children at home, afraid of contracting the illness at a pool or other public gathering spot. And, contracting the disease might have meant a shortened life lived out in a gigantic iron lung, or bound up in steel braces.

Photo by Carol M. Highsmith, courtesy Library of Congress.

There was much rejoicing in 1955 when Jonas Salk introduced the first polio (injected) vaccine, and again in 1961, when Albert Sabin introduced the first oral (taken by mouth) polio vaccine.

So, October 24, World Polio Day, is an annual day to raise awareness that the disease still exists, but it can be eliminated.

To learn more, look for the DVD, A Paralyzing Fear: The Story of Polio in America [DVD 614.549 PAR]. Or Polio: An American Story by David M. Oshinsky [614.549 OSH].

Monday, October 23, 2017

Change of Plans

I expected to begin posting again today, but a number of staff members are at a regional conference, and we are a little short-staffed. Plus, I have hundreds of emails in my inbox, which, at the very least must be gone through to see if they will require a response. At this point I can't say when things will be back to normal! Check back in a few days!

For now, I will leave you with this: today is National Boston Cream Pie Day!

Photo (with recipe) from King Arthur Flour.

Monday, October 16, 2017

See You in a Week!

Kurious Kitty is taking a week off from posting in order to attend a multi-day workshop. Look for posts to begin again on Monday, October 23.

In the meantime, here's a little public service video from 1953 on "Getting the Facts." In today's atmosphere of "alternative facts," "fake news," and other hot topics, it's fun to see how things were done 60 years ago. Enjoy!

Friday, October 13, 2017

Poetry Friday--Mites to Mastodons

Mites to Mastodons is a book of poems by the late Maxine Kumin [J 811.54 KUM]. Kumin, a long time resident of New Hampshire, passed away in 2014 at the age of 88.

Kumin served a term (1982-1984) as United States Poet Laureate (when the position was still called "Consultant in Poetry"). She wrote many books of adult poetry, as well as fiction and poetry for children.

Mites to Mastodons is illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski and her wildly colorful and playful art is a fine companion to Kumin's poetry.

This is one of my favorites from the collection:

This fellow's feelings will not be hurt
    if dinner is served without dessert.

Nobody has to tell him to finish
    his beans, asparagus, peas, or spinach.

Nobody needs to wait while he eats
    his Brussels sprouts or cabbage or beets.

And when they ask him he always says yes
    to seconds of turnips or watercress.

Today the Poetry Friday Round-Up is being held at Live Your Poem. Stop by!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Pet Cemeteries

Have you ever driven on route 213 heading toward 495 and noticed a cemetery on the right with tiny headstones? This is the Hillside Acre Animal Cemetery. It is part of the MSPCA--Nevins Farm facility and has been in operation for more than a century! It sounds like a long time. Who would have thought that people of the period prior to World War I would have considered opening a graveyard exclusively for animals? It sounds like a 21st century indulgence for obsessive pet people.

It seems that people have been honoring their pets for even more than 100 years. A recent discovery in Egypt unearthed a pet cemetery dating back to 75-150 AD!

Human nature being what it is, the memory of our pets will probably be honored for hundreds of years to come!

And, Stephen King being who he is, wrote a rather horrific book about a pet cemetery titled, Pet Sematary [F KIN].

When a little boy's pet dies, and he persuades his parents to bury it in an old Indian cemetary, reputed by legend to house restless spirits, a nightmare of death and destruction begins as deceased animals come back to life...

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Today Is National Fossil Day!

Today, October 11, is designated by the National Park Service as National Fossil Day! You might ask, "why celebrate fossils?" Simply put, to learn where we came from and how we, as one of many creatures on Earth, have evolved. The National Park Service states the day is
...held to highlight the scientific and educational value of paleontology and the importance of preserving fossils for future generations.

Children are often fascinated by fossils and may envision a life as a paleontologist. The NPS has a Junior Paleontologist Program that you can learn about here.

Your children may want to learn even more about paleontology and fossils. These will help them get started:

Goodhue, Thomas W. Curious Bones: Mary Anning and the Birth of Paleontology. [J B ANN]

Holtz, Thomas R. Digging for Brachiosaurus. (And other titles in "Smithsonian: Dinosaur Discovery Timelines" series.) [J 567.913 HOL]

Lacovara, Kenneth. Why Dinosaurs Matter. [eBook]

Larson, Peter L. Bones Rock!: Everything You Need to Know to Be a Paleontologist. [J 560 LAR]

Morgan, Ben. Rock & Fossil Hunter. [J 552 MOR]

Romaine, Garret. Geology Lab for Kids: 52 Projects to Explore Rocks, Gems, Geodes, Crystals, Fossils, and Other Wonders of the Earth's Surface. [on order]

VanVoorst, Jenny Fretland. Fossils. [J 560 VAN]

We have plenty more!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Back in Business

Our recarpeting project has been completed and we've installed some new display shelving. Things are back in order for the most part and we hope you'll visit us soon to see the changes.

As we try out new shelving arrangements you may find items are not where they used to be. Please ask if you can't find what you are looking for.

The new shelves allow us to display more of the recent additions to the DVD collection, including these ten movies added in September and October:

Band Aid. [DVD BAN]

Beatriz at Dinner. [DVD BEA]

The Book of Henry. [DVD BOO]

Chronically Metropolitan. [DVD CHR]

Fun Mom Dinner. [DVD FUN]

A Ghost Story. [DVD GHO]

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. [DVD IMM]

Paris Can Wait. [DVD PAR]

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Lies. [DVD PIR]

The Wizard of Lies. [DVD WIZ]

Friday, October 06, 2017

Poetry Friday--Teacher Resource

I have been using the clipart resource of Florida Center for Instructional Technology, College of Education, University of South Florida for many years. I also recently discovered they have a literature component titled, Lit2Go.
Lit2Go is a free online collection of stories and poems in Mp3 (audiobook) format. An abstract, citation, playing time, and word count are given for each of the passages. Many of the passages also have a related reading strategy identified. Each reading passage can also be downloaded as a PDF and printed for use as a read-along or as supplemental reading material for your classroom.
This resource uses literature in the public domain, that is, writing that was published prior to 1923 and is no longer covered by copyright. However, use of Lit2Go is subject to certain restrictions that are found here.

What I think would be particularly useful for teachers is that one can browse the collection of materials by "Readablility," thus allowing the teacher to quickly determine if a piece might be appropriate for the readers at a particular grade level. Teachers may also find that browsing by "Collection" can lead to some interesting finds. For example, the seasons have just changed and Lit2Go has a collection Autumn in Verse to help find the perfect fall poem!

Head over to Violet Nesdoly | Poems for the Poetry Friday Round-Up, where I'm sure you'll find many more poems about fall.

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Antarctica and More

Writer and cartoonist, Karen Romano Young, has been keeping an illustrated log of interesting features of Antarctica, a place she has been lucky enough to visit.

Here is a sample of one of her log entries:

Here first entry was logged on June 8, 2017, so, if you wish to learn more, or to follow along, click here. There is also a science comics contest for kids in grades 5-12.

Here is a sampling of Karen's books that we have in our collection:

Across the Wide Ocean: The Why, How, and Where of Navigation for Humans and Animals at Sea. [J 623.89 YOU]

Doodlebug: A Novel in Doodles
. [J YOU]

Hundred Percent
. [J YOU]

Science Fair Winners: Crime Scene Science: 20 Projects and Experiments about Clues, Crimes, Criminals, and Other Mysterious Things. [J 507.8 YOU]

Wednesday, October 04, 2017


Monday, by all measures, was a horrific day of nonstop reporting of the massacre in Las Vegas. Later in the day came reports of the death of rock star, Tom Petty. Both of those events had a common thread--music. I hope music will be able to help heal our troubled nation.

Tom Petty's music will live on. Look for his work in his solo albums, and his albums with Mudcrutch [CD ROCK MUD], the Heartbreakers [CD ROCK] , and the Traveling Wilburys [CD ROCK TRA].

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

October is Squirrel Awareness and Appreciation Month

One of the most exasperating creatures on earth is the squirrel (if you have a birdfeeder). I also think, it is one of the cutest and most fascinating.

I'm not sure how anyone who lives in New England could be unaware of squirrels, but if you've not come across the creatures, there is a month especially devoted to them, “Squirrel Awareness and Appreciation Month,” which is held annually in October. The month is sponsored by The Squirrel Lover's Club.

We have a good number of nonfiction books on squirrels (and outwitting them), but did you know squirrels also are a favorite character in children's fiction and picture books? Here are a few:

DiCamillo, Kate. Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures. [J DIC, J AB/CD DIC, eBook]

Hall, Pamela. Miss You Like Crazy. [JP HAL]

Hill, Chris. Lucky. [J HIL]

Kasza, Keiko. Finders Keepers. [JP KAS]

Meisel, Paul. Good Night, Bat! Good Morning, Squirrel! [JP MEI]

Ohi, Debbie Ridpath. Where Are My Books? [JP OHI]

Ray, J. Hamilton. Squirrels on Skis. [E RAY]

Rose, Nancy. The Secret Life of Squirrels. [JP ROS]

Vande Velde, Vivian. Squirrel in the House. [J VAN]

Watt, Mélanie. Scaredy Squirrel. [JP WAT]

Monday, October 02, 2017

Sorry--The Library is Closed Today!

The Library is closed today to complete the carpeting project begun on September 22. 12,000 square feet is a lot of area to redo. With luck, everything will be finished today, and, furniture and equipment will be returned to their spaces, with some new display areas installed by the end of the week. We thank you for your patience and cooperation!

Here are some photos of the project:

Photos courtesy Maria Schroeter.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Poetry Friday--Coffee (and Biscotti)

Photo by Zh.B.

Guess what? Friday, September 29 is International Coffee Day, and, if that's not reason enough to celebrate, it's also National Biscotti Day!

Did you know that biscotti is plural. One of the delicious dunkers is a biscotto! However, nobody can eat just one!

Here's a coffee poem from the December 1947 issue of Poetry magazine:

[Back issues of Poetry magazine can be found here.]

My favorite coffee song is "Black Coffee" by Peggy Lee, found on the CD titled Black Coffee [CD FEMALE VOCALIST LEE].

Laura is hosting this week's Poetry Friday Round-Up at Writing the World for Kids.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

It's Almost Halloween Time!

We're heading into October and those kids who aren't already thinking about Halloween are few and far between.

We probably own more Halloween children's picture books than ones for any other holiday! So, if you're looking for something besides the old favorites The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything by Linda Williams [JP WIL] or The Berenstain Bears and the Spooky Old Tree [E BER], we have a number of titles that were published within the past few years including these:

Boynton, Sandra. EEK! Halloween! [BB BOY]

Bruel, Nick. Bad Kitty, Scaredy-Cat. [JP BRU]

The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot about...Halloween! [J DVD CAT]

DiTerlizzi, Angela. Seeking a Witch. [BB DIT]

Gallion, Sue Lowell. Pug & Pig Trick-or-Treat. [JP GAL]

Kimmelman, Leslie. Trick ARRR Treat: A Pirate Halloween. [JP KIM]

Lester, Helen. Tacky and the Haunted Igloo. [JP LES]

Long, Ethan. Fright Club. [JP LON]

Patricelli, Leslie. Boo! [BB PAT]

Pound Puppies. Halloween at Shelter 17. [J DVD POU]

And crafty parents, here's one for you!

Sew a Modern Halloween: Make 15 Spooky Projects for Your Home. [eBook]

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Recarpeting Project Begins

Just a reminder: the Library is being recarpeted in all public areas. In order to achieve the desired results without health and safety risks to the public, the Library will be closed 9/22, open 9/23-24, closed 9/25, open 9/26-10/1, and closed 10/2. Those times the Library will be open, services will be curtailed as there will be no seating, no access to the public computers, and book shelves may be covered with protective plastic.

It is our expectation that the Library will be back to normal by October 3, however, unexpected delays may take place.

In the meantime, if you're not aware of our eBook and eAudiobook service, now is the time to explore this option for reading and listening. Through the GMILCS consortium we have access to CloudLibrary titles, and, through a statewide program, we have access to Overdrive titles. These titles may be downloaded to your device or desktop. Click here to get started. Some recently added eBooks include these:

Looking for magazines? We have popular titles through Zinio, our eMagazine service. Click here to sign up for eMagazines.

Most importantly, if you need a physical book or magazine, your valid Nesmith Library card may be used in any library that is part of the GMILCS consortium. Included are Salem, Kelley Library and the Derry Public Library--both are just a short ride from Nesmith Library.

This will be the last post until next Thursday, but please check our website or Facebook page for updates on the recarpeting project. We look forward to seeing you!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Upcoming Movies Based on Books

Here's where you get to read the books BEFORE the movie/tv mini-series are available. These adaptations have all been completed and have release dates within the next 9 months. A number of them will be coming out before the holidays, so borrow the book now! (We will get them for our DVD collection once they are released on DVD.)

Atwood, Margaret. Alias Grace. [F ATW]

Cline, Ernest. Ready Player One. [SF CLI, AB/CD CLI, eBook]

Jordan, Hillary. Mudbound. [F JOR, eBook]

Matthews, Jason. Red Sparrow. [F MAT]

Patchett, Ann. Bel Canto. [F PAT]

Selznick, Brian. Wonderstruck. [J SEL]

Semple, Maria. Where'd You Go, Bernadette. [F SEM, AB/CD SEM, eBook]

Shaffer, Mary Ann. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. [F SHA, LP SHA, AB/CD SHA, eBook]

If you belong to a book discussion group, several of the above titles should be familiar to you as they were "hot" items for book groups. It generally means that the books were more than a bit of escapist reading. With any luck, the treatment of issues in the filmed versions will be thoughtfully dealt with. (It has been reported that The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was not even filmed on Guernsey, so you have to wonder about authenticity!)

Alias Grace will be a six-part mini-series available in November on Netflix:

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

More Books Recently Made into Movies

It seems that many film projects are now based on books, both fiction and nonfiction. Yesterday I listed five DVDs that have been added to our collection in 2017 that started off as books.

Here are five more:

Eggers, Dave. The Circle. [F EGG, eBook, DVD CIR]

Grann, David. The Lost City of Z. [918.11 GRA, eBook, DVD LOS]

Rowling, J. K. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. [J ROW, eBook, DVD FAN]

Shetterly, Margot Lee. Hidden Figures. [629.4 SHE, AB/CD 629.4072 SHE, eBook, DVD HID]

Yoon, Nicola. Everything, Everything. [YA YOO, DVD EVE, eBook]

And here are two that are now showing in theaters:

King, Stephen. It. [F KIN, AB/CD KIN, eBook, and an earlier movie adaptation: DVD IT]

Walls, Jeanette. The Glass Castle. [B WAL, AB/CD B WAL, eBook]

Let us know what you think--which is better, the book or the movie?

Monday, September 18, 2017

Which Is Better?

Generally speaking, people fall on the side of the book when comparing the book and its movie. There is only one movie that I personally think is equal to the book, and that may be because it is the only movie I know that follows the book practically word for word. The book and movie twins are A Room With a View by E. M. Forster, film by Merchant Ivory Prodeuctions, [F FOR, AB/CD FOR, DVD ROO].

In the case of children's books turned into film, the movie often can't be compared, since, in most cases, an enormous amount of additional subplots, special effects, etc. has to be added to make it fit into an approximately 90-minute-long feature. The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg went from a 32-page picture book to a 100-minute film directed by Robert Zemeckis [JP VAN, DVD POL]. There is no comparing the two formats. The story has been completely transformed into something unrecognizable.

I discovered the other day that my nephew and his friend have created a "Book vs. Movie" program that shows how the ratings on a book/film compare (ratings gathered from Goodreads and IMDB). Check it out here.

Here are five movies released on DVD in 2017 that are book based:

Ackerman, Diane. The Zookeeper's Wife. [940.5318 ACK, AB/CD 940.5318 ACK, eBook, DVD ZOO]

Fountain, Ben. Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk. [F FOU, LP FOU, eBook, DVD BIL]

Hawkins, Paula. The Girl on the Train. [F HAW, AB/CD HAW, LP HAW, eBook, CHINESE F HAW, DVD GIR]

Ness, Patrick. A Monster Calls. [YA NES, eBook, DVD MON]

Skloot, Rebecca. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. [616.0277 SKL, AB/CD 616.0277 SKL, eBook, DVD IMM]

Read the book then watch the movie and let us know which one you think is better.