Monday, October 26, 2009

Count Down to Halloween

Halloween will be here soon! For last minute craft and decor ideas check out our collection of Halloween books. There is also a CD with spooky sounds. Find out about Halloween's ancient roots from Ireland and Rome to the United States by clicking here. See our program calendar for special children events this week (some require registration). Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Good 100

The GOOD 100 is a compendium of people, ideas, and programs attempting to change our planet for the better. Put together by GOOD magazine, the list ranges from cities racing to become the most electric-vehicle friendly to gardeners illegally fertilizing with human waste, neighbors banding together to change the economics of solar power to scholars pressing for new approaches to international aid. Visit the site and find 100 ways to get inspired.

Eat Better; Eat Together!

October is Eat Better; Eat Together month. The following books will give you tips, ideas, and recipes. Why not try out a new recipe or explore foods from different countries?

Starting this month, try to eat better, but also eat together, and enjoy mealtime family conversations.

Monday, October 19, 2009

National Book Award Finalists

The finalists for the 2009 National Book Awards have been announced. The winners will be revealed on November 18, 2009 at the 60th anniversary celebration of the National Book Foundation in New York City.

The finalists for fiction are: Bonnie Jo Campell for "American Salvage", Colum McCann for "Let the Great World Spin", Daniyal Mueenuddin for "In Other Rooms, Other Wonders", Jayne Anne Phillips for "Lark and Termite", and Marcel Theroux for "Far North".

The finalists for non-fiction are: David M. Carroll for "Following the Water: A Hydroromancer's Notebook", Sean B. Carroll for "Remarkable Creatures: Epic Adventures in the Search for the Origins of Species", Greg Grandin for "Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford's Forgotten Jungle City", Adrienne Mayor for "The Poison King: The Life and Legend of Mithradates, Rome's Deadliest Enemy", and T.J. Stiles for "The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt".

The finalists for poetry are: Rae Armantrout for "Versed", Ann Lauterbach for "Or to Begin Again", Carl Phillips for "Speak Low", Lyrae Van Clief-Stefanon for "Open Interval", and Keith Waldrop for "Transcendental Studies: A Triology".

The finalists for young people's literature are: Deborah Heiligman for "Charles and Emma: The Darwins' Leap of Faith", Phillip Hoose for "Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice", David Small for "Stitches", Laini Taylor for "Lips Touch: Three Times", and Rita Williams-Garcia for "Jumped".

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Herta Müller Nobel Prize for Literature

Herta Müller became the 12th woman in 108 years to win the Nobel Prize for Literature last week. She was born in Romania in 1953, but writes in German. She emigrated to Germany in 1987.
Several of her novels have been translated into English.
For more information, see the article by Alison Flood in THE GUARDIAN. There is also a series of 11 pictures on Herta Müller.
Martin Chalmers writes: "It's not a comfortable vision that Müller presents in her novels and essays, but few other contemporary writers can match her understanding of the totality and corrupting effect of dictatorship - and still fewer are able to do so in words that are at once so poetic, that get under the skin and lodge in the mind of the reader."

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The World of Watteau

The artwork of the great 18th century French painter Jean-Antoine Watteau (1684-1721) is presently featured in an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City (Sept. 22, 2009 - Nov. 29, 2009).
Our library recently acquired two books on Watteau and his world: The highly recommended and acclaimed book by art critic Jed Perl "Antoine's Alphabet: Watteau and his World" and the book by Iris Lauterbach "Antoine Watteau: 1684-1721". Watteau is considered an influential pioneer, although he died young at age 36.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

The 2009 Man Booker Prize for Fiction goes to British author Hilary Mantel for her novel WOLF HALL. The book takes place during the reign of King Henry VIII. Its main protagonist is Thomas Cromwell, advisor to Henry VIII. For more information, see the article by Motoko Rich published in today's New York Times or read the book review by Janet Maslin.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

National Parks

If you've missed any of Ken Burns' series on The National Parks, you can watch them online now through October 9th. Visit the PBS series' web site to learn more about our great American natural treasures.

You'll be able to check out the series from the library once it becomes available on DVD!

October Literary Birthdays

 Poets and playwrights make a strong showing in October, including e.e. cummings, Sylvia Plath, Arthur Rimbaud, and one-time Connecticut residents Wallace Stevens, Eugene O'Neill, and Arthur Miller .

October 2 - Wallace Stevens (1879 -1955)
October 2 - Graham Greene (1904-1991)
October 3 - Gore Vidal (1925-)
October 3 - James Harriot (1916-1995)
October 4 - Anne Rice (1941 - )
October 10 - Harold Pinter (1930 - )
October 10 - Elmore Leonard (1930 - )
October 14 - e.e. cummings (1894-1962)
October 16 - Eugene O'Neill (1888 - 1953)
October 16 - Günter Grass (1927 - )
October 16 - Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900)
October 17 - Arthur Miller (1915-2005)
October 18 - Wendy Wasserstein (1950-2006)
October 20 - Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891)
October 20 -Robert Pinsky (1940 -)
October 21 - Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772 - 1834)
October 21 - Ursula K. Le Guin (1929 - )
October 22 - Doris Lessing (1919 - )
October 25 - Anne Tyler (1941 - )
October 27 - Dylan Thomas (1914-1953)
October 27 - Sylvia Plath (1932-1963)
October 30 - Ezra Pound (1885 - 1972)
October 30 - Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821 - 1881)
October 31 - John Keats (1795 - 1821)