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Thursday, May 25, 2017

In the Arctic

I can't imagine you didn't hear the recent news about the seed storage facility in the Arctic that was flooded by melting permafrost. The seeds, fortunately, were not lost, if they had been then perhaps our future existence on Earth may be jeopardized! If you missed the story, click here.

Permafrost has preserved and protected biological materials, and, it has resulted in scientific discoveries in addition to problems. (Several problems are outlined here.) There are mammoth remains being discovered, which you can read about it in Woolly Mammoth: Life, Death, and Rediscovery by Windsor Chorlton [J 569 CHO]. And, there's the fascinating story of the discovery of the cause of the Great Flu of 1918 that Gina Bari Kolata wrote about in Flu: The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus that Caused It [614.518 KOL].

With continuing climate changes, we're probably in store for more news from the Arctic. We can only hope that the news is good.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Lady with the Lamp

"The Lady with the Lamp" is a name applied to Florence Nightingale (1820-1910), a nurse who devoted her life to caring for and about her patients. The sobriquet is from an article about Nightingale's work in Crimea, which appeared in the British newspaper, The Times.
She is a "ministering angel" without any exaggeration in these hospitals, and as her slender form glides quietly along each corridor, every poor fellow's face softens with gratitude at the sight of her. When all the medical officers have retired for the night and silence and darkness have settled down upon those miles of prostrate sick, she may be observed alone, with a little lamp in her hand, making her solitary rounds.
This rather romantic representation of Nightingale is from an 1891 painting by Henrietta Rae.

Image courtesy Wellcome Collection.


Nightingale's birthday anniversary was on May 12, and a very interesting article about her love for statistics and record-keeping, was published with the title, "Florence Nightingale Was Born 197 Years Ago, and Her Infographics Were Better Than Most of the Internet’s." You can read it, and see what was probably one of the world's first "infographics," by clicking here.

We have many juvenile and teen biographies on Florence Nightingale, as well as the adult biography, Nightingales: The Extraordinary Upbringing and Curious Life of Miss Florence Nightingale by Gillian Gill [B NIG].

Learn more about infographics in Infographics: The Power of Visual Storytelling by Jason Lankow [302.23 LAN].

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Where Are They Now?

Fans of the movie, Love Actually [DVD LOV], will be pleased to know that a sequel of sorts, Love Actually 2, has been filmed and will be shown this Thursday as part of a telephon on NBC.


If you miss the telephon, I imagine the short film will be on YouTube by Friday, but for now, here's the trailer:



Novel writers also fall in love with characters and attempt to write sequels to classic novels. Some are successful, others, not so much! Here are five such attempts:

Aiken, Joan. Eliza's Daughter: A Sequel to Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility. [eBook]

Jeffers, Regina. Christmas at Pemberley: A Pride and Prejudice Holiday Sequel. [eBook]

Kalpakian, Laura. Cosette: The Sequel to Les Miserables. [F KAL]

McKay, Hilary. Wishing for Tomorrow: The Sequel to A Little Princess. [J MCK]

Ripley, Alexandra. Scarlett: The Sequel to Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind. [F RIP]

Monday, May 22, 2017

Hey, You, Banana Tooth!

NPR has reported that scientists at Oklahoma State University determined that the bite of a Tyrannosaurus rex could exert about 8,000 pounds of force on its prey. According to one of the scientists,
That's like setting three small cars on top of the jaws of a T. rex--that's basically what was pushing down.

A T. rex tooth was as long as a banana! Imagine the size of a toothbrush that would have been needed for proper dental care!

Kids have always been fascinated by T. rex and other dinosaurs and this is evident by our extensive collection of dinosaur books in the our children's section. Everything from picture books to musical CDs!


Bailey, Gerry. Tyrannosaurus Rex. [J 567.9129 BAI]

Holtz, Thomas R. Digging for Tyrannosaurus Rex: A Discovery Timeline. [J 567.9129 HOL]

Lennie, Charles. Tyrannosaurus Rex. [J 567.9129 LEN]

McClatchy, Lisa. Dear Tyrannosaurus Rex. [JP MCC]

Nickel, Scott. T. Rex vs Robo-Dog 3000. [J CX NIC]

Sloan, Christopher. Tracking Tyrannosaurs: Meet T. Rex's Fascinating Family, from Tiny Terrors to Feathered Giants. [J 567.912 SLO]

A T-Rex Named Sue. [CD CHILDREN TRE]

Friday, May 19, 2017

Poetry Friday--Flower Fairies

Finally, after what seemed like weeks of clouds and rain, the sun came out! Against a backdrop of bright blue skies, the flowering trees and shrubs are gorgeous. It is time for our fairy village wee folk to come back from their winter hiatus, so look forward to seeing them soon.

In anticipation, and in keeping with the abundance of spring flowers, today we'll take a look at The Complete Book of the Flower Fairies by Cicely Mary Barker [821.912 BAR]. The collection is compiled from the books written and illustrated by Barker and published during the period 1923-1985. It includes poems written by Barker, as well as fairy poems from such writers as Robert Herrick and Walter de la Mare.

Owing to epilepsy, Barker, was homeschooled as a child and spent much time alone. This led her to use her imagination. She was also a self-taught artist. Kate Greenaway was one of her influences, as can be seen from her illustrations.

Here's "The Song of the Apple Blossom Fairies" from A Flower Fairy Alphabet:



Kiesha at Whispers from the Ridge will be rounding up the Poetry Friday links this week!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Happy Birthday, Tina Fey!

Comic actress, Tina Fey, was born on this day in 1970. Tina's full name is Elizabeth Stamatina Fey. "Tina," obviously is a nickname.

Photo by Gage Skidmore, courtesy Wikipedia.

Fey became known for her stint on Saturday Night Live, which she joined in 1998. She left in 2006 to work on other projects (TV 30 Rock and films). She returned as a guest on SNL in 2008 where her impersonation of vice-presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, was a huge success.

Look for these Tina Fey films:

Admission. [DVD ADM]

Man of the Year. [DVD MAN]

This is Where I Leave You. [DVD THI]

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. [DVD WHI]

A multi-talented individual, Fey also wrote the bestselling Bossypants [B FEY, AB/CD B FEY].

Happy birthday, Tina!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Letters about Literature

Each year, the Center for the Book at the New Hampshire State Library participates in the Library of Congress competition, "Letters about Literature," in which children and teens write to the author (living or dead) of a favorite book, poem, or speech about "how that book affected their lives." The New Hampshire winners for 2017 were recently announced and the letter writers now go on to the national judging.


The three authors written to by this year's NH winners are Esther Earl who wrote This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl [YA B EAR, AB/CD B EAR], Jerry Spinelli, author of Stargirl [YA SPI, eBook, eAudio], and Gary Paulsen, writer of Harris and Me: A Summer Remembered [J PAU]. Read the books, and then read the letters and see if they've impacted you in the same way.