Blogs

Books on Tap - May Follow Up

One way or another, I will keep sneaking science fiction into Books on Tap meetings! The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern, explored the world of fantasy science fiction. Many people were intrigued by the descriptive qualities of the book. Morgenstern has a way with words that bring the images of the circus to life. Overall, people enjoyed the book and were interested by the fact that this was Morgenstern's first book. We discussed the connections between this work and the works of William Shakespeare, as well as how it was different from other books in the manner in which the storyline switched around in time. 

Come to Jimmy's on June 9th at 6:30pm to discuss Yes Please by Amy Poehler.

Hoopla adds comics and ebooks!

Hoopla just got even better.  In addition to great new music, audiobooks, TV series and movies, you can now check out eBooks and eComics, all from the Hoopla app.  The eComic selection is huge and has great titles for kids, teens and adults.  If you haven't yet tried Hoopla click here to get started.

It's New Music Tuesday on Hoopla!

Here's what's dropping today on Hoopla:

 

 

 

 

 

 

In case you missed it, here's what dropped last week:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Releases

May 19:

  • Twenty One Pilots - Blurryface
  • Paul Weller - Saturns Pattern
  • Brandon Flowers - The Desired Effect
  • Jeff Beck - Live +
  • Brnatley Gilbert - Just As I am Platinum Edition
  • The Milk Carton Kids - Monterey
  • Silverstein - I am Alive In Everything I Touch
  • Madisen Ward And The Mama Bear - Skeleton Crew

May 26:

  • Boosie Badazz - Touch Down 2 Cause Hell
  • Alesso - Forever
  • The Oak Ridge Boys - Rock Of Ages Hymns And Gospel Favorites
  • Dizzy Wright - The Growing Process
  • Joshua Redman - & The Bad Plus - The Bad Plus Joshua Redman
  • Snarky Puppy & Metropole Orkest - Sylva
  • Larry Hernandez - Vete Acostumbrando

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Outlander is a story of time travel, love, and includes elements of history. The main character, Claire Randall (who is from England) time travels to 18th century Scotland. The story starts out taking place in 1947. While in Scotland, Claire must try to blend in with the people and marries a Scottish man named Jamie. The author describes and helps readers visualize historical battles form the war between Scotland and England. The author does a great job of explaining the events in 18th century Scotland and describing the life that Jamie and Claire share together. In the back of Claire's mind there is always the thought of returning home to 1940s England. What I liked most about the book was the elements of adventure. One minute Jamie and Claire were in peril, trying to get out of a bad situation and the next minute all of their problems are resolved. Claire is a doctor and uses her 20th century skills to help people in Scotland and tries hard to conceal the extent of her knowledge so that people do not become suspicious of her. 

This popular series has now spawned a TV series on Starz.  Season 1 part 1 is available at ELPL.

The Last Kind Words Saloon by Larry McMurtry

This was my first Larry McMurtry novel and I picked it up and I was pleasantly surprised. It is a light read that jumps time and place about the Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday and other characters from the Tombstone era. This is not an in-depth book, but it felt like a light, off the top-of-the head, oral history of their friendship and some places and characters they meet. As a fan of Wyatt Earp books and novels, I felt this was light reading but it put a different spin on Wyatt and Doc as real people rather than the heroic, mythological characters they are built up to be. If you want a light read about some Westerns heroes this is the book for you!

Elephant - White Stripes

Whenever I hear the opening phrase of Seven Nation Army by the White Stripes, I am immediately taken back to the year 2006 when I visited Italy during their run up to the World Cup win. All throughout the streets, you would hear crowds of people chanting the beat of the song because it was the favorite of one of the Italian players. It just puts me in a happy spot!

I hadn't listened to the remainder of the album Elephant in some time, and I had forgotten how truly magical it is. It starts strong with Seven Nation Army and takes you on a wonderful listening journey between more hard songs, to soft ballads as only Jack White can sing them, to good old fashioned rock songs. If you've taken a little break from the White Stripes and feel like getting back into them, start with Elephant. Pay particular attention to Jack's cover of Dusty Springfield's I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself - it truly is a fantastic version of the classic song.

Hoopla has lots of great stuff from the White Stripes.  Haven't tried Hoopla yet?  What are you waiting for?     

 

How to Train Your Dragon

How to Train Your Dragon is a wonderful tale of bravery and friendship. Hiccup, a tiny viking, tries to prove himself to his father by slaying a dragon. He succeeds in capturing him, but in the end can't bring himself to kill him. They end up being the best of friends and Hiccup names the dragon Toothless. I have to say, I love this movie a lot. Toothless is an incredibly lovable character and pretty much makes the movie. I can't think of anything that I disliked about this film. It's a kids movie, so there's nothing bad (depending on your definition), the animation is spectacular, the voice actors do a great job with each of their characters, and even the music is great.  This is a great movie the whole family will love, I definitely recommend seeing it. 

What are you eating?

Have you ever sat down and wondered where your food comes from? Food, Inc. is a documentary that shows how our food comes from the farm to the table. This film is based on the book by the same title edited by Karl Weber. And it presents some unsettling views of the food industry. While this is only one side of the story, the filmmakers present many ideas that should be taken into account in how we choose what we eat.

This film focuses primarily on the production of meat (mainly beef, pork, and chicken). Just as a heads up - not all scenes are for the faint of heart. This film shows some graphic images of meat preparation, so I wouldn't recommend watching after a meal! They discuss how the production of meat for mass consumption has evolved as the consumers needs and wants have changed over time. It tells of how we, as a country, create the demand for a product and the industry attempts to fulfill that demand in a cost-effective way. This process affects agriculture (most of the feed for the animals is a corn-based diet) as well as consumerism (paying less for potentially sub-par product as opposed to organic items). 

The filmmakers do leave the viewer with some tips on how to help change the food industry. They give many suggestions but there are two that I took to heart: buy locally and plant your own garden. Supporting your local community usually leads to having better quality products and helps to ensure a sustainable environment. One easy way to do this is to shop at your local farmer's market.

 

As an amateur gardener myself, I have a vegetable garden that has become my pride and joy! The great thing about gardening is that you can make it specific to your wants a needs. Do you love tomatoes? Plant them! Do you love eggplant? Plant them! Want to try something new? Every year, I try a new plant. Last year was celery. This year - I'm going for brussel sprouts! It's such a rewarding process to see a garden through and be able to literally eat the fruits of your labor! These are pictures of my garden from last year. This haul was just the first of many! While it does take time and a commitment, it is totally worth it in the long run!

 

Kroger Community Rewards

If you shop at Kroger, you can support the library while doing your grocery shopping!  Just take a minute to complete these steps online and the library will receive a percentage of what you spend quarterly at Kroger!  The more people we have that designate us, the more rewards we receive!

  • Register online at krogercommunityrewards.com
  • If you are a new online customer, click SIGN UP TODAY in the ‘New Customer’ box.
  • Sign up for a Kroger Rewards Account by entering your zip code, clicking on favorite store, entering your email address, creating a password, and agreeing to the terms and conditions.
  • You will then get a message to check your email inbox and click on the link in the email.
  • Click on My Account and use your email address and password to proceed to the next step.
  • Click on Edit Kroger Community Rewards information and input your Kroger Plus card number.  If you don’t have a Kroger Plus card, pick one up at the customer service desk at your Kroger.
  • Update or confirm your information.
  • Enter NPO number – 98968 – or select East Lansing Public Library and click on confirm.
  • To verify you are enrolled correctly, you will see ELPL on the right side of your information page.

Donate, Renovate, Innovate...A Renewed East Lansing Public Library

I am excited to share with the community that East Lansing Public Library (ELPL) received an incredibly generous donation from an anonymous donor on April 10, 2015. The donation is in the amount of $1,500,000.

This is truly wonderful for ELPL and the entire community. It provides the opportunity to inspire and innovate a re-imagined East Lansing Public Library.

What does this mean for ELPL?

The donation will allow for a partial renovation of the library. We will be able to move some things around and to re-purpose some spaces. The teen area will be larger; the maker studio will be larger; the children's area will be engaging; a cyber cafe with vending machines will be added; and the floor plan will be opened up. We will also incorporate new furniture and shelving in parts of the library.

While $1.5 million is huge and by far the largest donation the library, and probably the city, has ever gotten, unfortunately, it does not get us a full renovation of the library nor does it get us a much needed expansion. ELPL does need to be expanded because we are approximately 20,000 square feet too small for the size of population we serve. In addition, it will not allow for any parking lot repairs or additions.

This is why we are asking for the community to match the gift or to even exceed the donation. Our goal is to raise an additional $1.5 to $2 million by May 2016. However to do an expansion and renovation like we need, it will cost $11,000,000. The Donate, Renovate, Innovate...A Renewed East Lansing Public Library Capital Campaign kicked off on April 17.

It is important to note, the gift ELPL received is restricted. It can only be used for renovations to the current library building. It cannot be used for operations. Our operations budget continues to be tight as we juggle the cost of staff, materials and technology needs.

If things progress well, the renovations will start in September/October 2015 and will take approximately nine months to complete. This means our Meeting Room, the North Foyer Art Gallery, the Storytime Room and other areas will not be available to use. Things will be displaced and dust will fly, however, the end result will be a re-imagined East Lansing Public Library where the possibilities will be unlimited.

Coming very soon, we will display a "book-o-meter" to show the progress of our Donate, Renovate, Innovate…A Renewed East Lansing Public Library Capital Campaign and architect renderings of the renovation plans.

This is a great time for the community. With your help we can make the East Lansing Public Library the stellar library the community deserves.

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