Wednesday Reads January 10th, 2018

Jan 10 '18

These are the books that the staff members of the South Sioux City Public Library are reading.

Throne of the Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed- The Crescent Moon Kingdoms, home to djenn and ghuls, holy warriors and heretics, are at the boiling point of a power struggle between the iron-fisted Khalif and the mysterious master thief known as the Falcon Prince. In the midst of this brewing rebellion a series of brutal supernatural murders strikes at the heart of the Kingdoms. But these killings are only the earliest signs of a plot for the Throne of the Crescent Moon that threatens to turn the great city of Dhamsawwaat, and the world itself, into a blood-soaked ruin.

Tortilla Curtain by T.C. Boyle- The lives of two different couples–wealthy Los Angeles liberals Delaney and Kyra Mossbacher, and Candido and America Rincon, a pair of Mexican illegals–suddenly collide, in a story that unfolds from the shifting viewpoints of the various characters.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline- “An exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyber-quest. Cline’s imaginative and rollicking coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.”–Booklist, starred review.

Paperbacks from Hell by Grady Hendrix- An affectionate, nostalgic, and unflinchingly funny celebration of the horror fiction boom of the 1970s and ’80s– Amazon
Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor- In a post-apocalyptic Africa, the world has changed in many ways; yet in one region genocide between tribes still bloodies the land. A woman who has survived the annihilation of her village and a terrible rape by an enemy general wanders into the desert, hoping to die. Instead, she gives birth to an angry baby girl with hair and skin the color of sand. Gripped by the certainty that her daughter is different—special—she names her Onyesonwu, which means “Who fears death?” in an ancient language.– Amazon

Come Sundown by Nora Roberts–  “The Bodine ranch and resort in western Montana is a family business, an idyllic spot for vacationers. A little over thirty thousand acres and home to four generations, it’s kept running by Bodine Longbow with the help of a large staff, including new hire Callen Skinner. There was another member of the family once: Bodine’s aunt Alice, who ran off before Bodine was born. She never returned, and the Longbows don’t talk about her much. The younger ones, who never met her, quietly presume she’s dead. But she isn’t. She is not far away, part of a new family, one she never chose–and her mind has been shattered. When a bartender leaves the resort late one night, and Bo and Cal discover her battered body in the snow, it’s the first sign that danger lurks in the mountains that surround them. The police suspect Cal, but Bo finds herself trusting him–and turning to him as another woman is murdered and the Longbows are stunned by Alice’s sudden reappearance. The twisted story she has to tell about the past–and the threat that follows in her wake–will test the bonds of this strong family, and thrust Bodine into a darkness she could never have imagined”– Provided by publisher.

Final Girls by Riley Sager- Emerging as the lone survivor of a serial killer’s massacre a decade earlier, Quincy Carpenter struggles to ignore traumatic memories and move on as one of a group of other survivors who look to her for answers when one of them is found dead in a suspicious suicide.

Seveneves by Neal Stephenson- Five thousand years later after a catastrophic event rendered the Earth a ticking time bomb, the progeny of a handful of outer space explorers–seven distinct races now three billion strong–embark on yet another audacious journey: to return to Earth.

Tangled up in Tinsel by Candis Terry–  As if the holidays weren’t stressful enough, Parker Kincade has a restaurant to open. The fact that his Groomzilla brother wants the place for his perfect Christmas wedding doesn’t help. Then there’s the stunning woman who appoints herself his new chef before he’s ready to hire one. But one look at Gabriella Montani has Parker reassessing needs vs. wants. And that’s before he tastes what she has to offer…

Mother, Mother by Koren Zailackas- Josephine Hurst has her family under control: two beautiful daughters, a brilliantly intelligent son, a tech-guru of a husband and a historical landmark home. But living in this matriarch’s determinedly cheerful, yet subtly controlling domain hasn’t been easy for her family. When her oldest daughter, Rose, runs off with a mysterious boyfriend, Josephine tightens her grip, gradually turning her flawless home into a darker sort of prison.


Gardening Classes and More at the South Sioux City Public Library

2010-08-15-13-19-28Gardening Classes and More at the South Sioux City Public Library

Cover to Cover Book Club will discuss Camino Island by John Grisham on Monday, January 8th at 3:00 p.m.  In this novel, Bruce Cable owns a popular bookstore in the sleepy resort town of Santa Rosa on Camino Island in Florida. He makes his real money, though, as a prominent dealer in rare books. Very few people know that he occasionally dabbles in the black market of stolen books and manuscripts. Mercer Mann is a young novelist with a severe case of writer’s block who has recently been laid off from her teaching position. She is approached by an elegant, mysterious woman working for an even more mysterious company. A generous offer of money convinces Mercer to go undercover and infiltrate Bruce Cable’s circle of literary friends, ideally getting close enough to him to learn his secrets. But eventually Mercer learns far too much.

The Family Movie will be shown on Monday January 8th at 4:00 p.m. and Saturday, January 13th at 1:00 p.m.  In this movie we will see a French fairy tale put into a live-action film, with an excellent musical score.

Beginning Gardening Class:  This class looks at the beginning point in gardening.  It is held on Monday, January 8th at 6:30 p.m.

Tangled Yarns meets on Tuesday evening at 6:30 p.m.

If You Like Camino Island you will like one of these books.

The Lost Island by Douglas Preston; after being tasked with stealing a page from a priceless, ancient book, brilliant scientist and master thief Gideon Crew discovers a hidden map on the back of the book’s parchment, in the third novel of the series following Gideon’s Corpse.

The Jefferson Key by Steve Berry; Cotton Malone battles a group of families whose influence dates back to U.S. Constitution and who seek to crack a code devised by Thomas Jefferson himself in their quest for power.

New Books on Gardening:  The following are some of the new books on gardening.

Floret Farm’s cut flower garden: grow, harvest & arrange stunning seasonal blooms by Erin Benzakein; “Welcome to the world of Floret Farm, where hundreds of flower varieties grow and thrive to produce show-stopping arrangements. Here, star flower farmer Erin Benzakein shares her insights on planting a cutting garden of your own – wherever you live. Learn the secrets to her airy and lush arrangements, including how-tos for spectacular bouquets, garlands, and wreaths to showcase your gorgeous flowers. Featuring planting, cultivating, and harvesting advice for more than 175 flower varieties along with tops to preserve their freshness from field to centerpiece, this book has everything you need to start planning your garden and the stunning arrangements that will keep your home bright and blooming year after year.”–COVER.
Happy houseplants: 30 lovely varieties to brighten up your home by Angela Staehling; For anyone who has longed for a garden of their own–whether a city dweller or one with less-than-green thumbs–this is a handy little guide to growing and maintaining houseplants. Cheerful and informative, Happy Houseplants will guide any budding indoor botanist through a bevy of topics, from soil and water to light and fertilizer. With beautiful illustrations accompanying 30 different profiles of plants, from the easygoing Air Plant to the striking Zebra Cactus, this nifty book is the perfect gift for anyone looking to bring a piece of the outdoors inside.
No dig organic home & garden: grow, cook, use & store your harvest by Charles Dowding; No dig organic gardening saves time and work. It requires an annual dressing of compost to help accelerate the improvement in soil structure and leads to higher fertility and less weeds. No dig experts, Charles Dowding and Stephanie Hafferty, explain how to set up a no dig garden. They describe how to: Make compost, enrich soil, harvest and prepare food and make natural beauty and cleaning products and garden preparations. These approaches work as well in small spaces as in large gardens. The Authors’ combined experience gives you ways of growing, preparing and storing the plants you grow for many uses, including delicious vegetable feasts and many recipes and ideas for increasing self-reliance, saving money, living sustainably and enjoying the pleasure of growing your own food, year round. Charles’ advice is distilled from 35 years of growing vegetables intensively and efficiently; he is the acknowledged no dig guru and salad expert both in the UK and internationally. Stephanie, a kitchen gardener, grows in her small, productive home garden and allotment, and creates no dig gardens for restaurants and private estates. She presents truly delicious seasonal recipes, made from the vegetables anyone can grow. She also explains how to use common plants you can grow and forage for to make handmade preparation for the home and garden.
Most Popular Checkouts in Nebraska Libraries:  The following are some of the most popular items around Nebraska libraries this year.
Nebraska Life Magazine tells stories of interest to people in Nebraska.  Read and learn about great travel destinations that you would never have considered because they are in our own backyard.
In Finding Nemo the fretful Marlin and his young son Nemo become separated from each other in the Great Barrier Reef. Nemo, a clown fish, is unexpectedly taken from his home and thrust into a fish tank in a dentist’s office overlooking Sydney Harbor. Buoyed by the companionship of a friendly fish named Dory, Marlin embarks on a dangerous trek and finds himself the unlikely hero.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid:  Dog Days by Jeff Kinney; In the latest diary of middle-schooler Greg Hefley, he records his attempts to spend his summer vacation sensibly indoors playing video games and watching television, despite his mother’s other ideas.
People Magazine brings readers the latest in pop culture news.
Whatever you read, have a great week.

Start Your New Year at the South Sioux City Public Library

Start Your New Year at the South Sioux City Public Library

This week we turn the page to a new year. When we are finished eating and drinking our fill, many of us will make some New Year’s resolutions and library book recommendations that will help you to keep them.

  1. Drink More Water:  To drink more water you may use an app, a journal, or a marked bottle.  The following are suggestions for apps.  Note:  I do not use a water intake counter, but these are the three top rated free apps.

Water Time Pro reminds you when to drink as well as keeping a record of how much water you do drink.

The Aqualert Drink Reminder reminds you to drink water at the right time.  This helps your body to more efficiently use the water.

Finally, Waterbalance will help you track water hydration level and stay healthy.

Each of these can be found on Android at the Google Play Story.  Apple, I am sure makes similar apps.  Check it out on your phone.  There are many from which to choose.

  1. The second most popular resolution is to “Move More and Sit Less”. The following are several apps that track your movement.

Step Counter Pedometer& Calorie Counter is an editor’s choice on Google Play that works well in calculating all that you want to track.

For those who are already in fit the Runtastic Running & Fitness Tracker.  The editors of Google Play say that this “is the best overall tracker for runners”.

These recommendations come from Google Play.  Go there and look at the many trackers that they have.  There are many to choose from, many of these are available on Apple.

  1. Next on the list is to Travel More. Even on a tight income you can camp, visit neighboring towns that you have not visited in some time, or visit the National Parks.

RV Camping in State Parks by David J. Davin (917 DAV); this book will tell you how to find RV friendly state parks.

The dog lover’s guide to travel: best destinations, hotels, events, and advice to please your pet-and you by Kelly E. Carter (636.7 CAR); is a handy book for finding dog parks, dog friendly hotels and more.

Secrets of the national parks : the experts’ guide to the best experiences beyond the tourist trail (917.304 NAT); is a great travel companion for those who want more than just the tourist sites.

  1. Volunteer more. The South Sioux City Public Library has many volunteer opportunities.  Just a few of these are:  senior gaming video or board, cards, bridge, chess, writing program, poetry, book clubs specialty (romance, mystery, fantasy,), movies in the libraries, cooking classes, Gardening classes, fantasy football league, art classes- painting, drawing, and adult literacy-work with learners of English to assist their reading skills.  You are an expert at something that we are not; join us in making our library better.

Let us know how we can help you with your new year’s resolutions.

This week we have Night of Fun is on Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m., Tangled Yarns on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m., Bilingual Storytime in on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m., Pat-a-Cake Pals is on Thursday morning at 10:00 a.m., and Toddler Time is on Friday at 10:00 p.m., and Family Movie Time is on Saturday at 1:00 p.m.

Check out these award winning books for 2017.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.  It is a story about a young slave’s adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South.

Evicted:  Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond, won the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.  Matthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley won the Edgar Award for Best Novel.  In this novel, eleven people–ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter–depart Martha’s Vineyard on a private jet headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the plane plunges into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs-the painter-and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of an immensely wealthy and powerful media mogul’s family.

Under the Harrow by Flynn Berry was awarded the Edgar Award for Best First Novel.  “When Nora takes the train from London to visit her sister in the countryside, she expects to find her waiting at the station, or at home cooking dinner. But when she walks into Rachel’s familiar house, what she finds is entirely different: her sister has been the victim of a brutal murder. Stunned and adrift, Nora finds she can’t return to her former life. An unsolved assault in the past has shaken her faith in the police, and she can’t trust them to find her sister’s killer. Haunted by the murder and the secrets that surround it, Nora is under the harrow: distressed and in danger. As Nora’s fear turns to obsession, she becomes as unrecognizable as the sister her investigation uncovers”– Provided by publisher.

Have a safe and happy new year and of course read good

Wednesday Reads: January 3rd, 2018

Jan 3 '17

These are the books that our staff are reading this week.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden; “In a village at the edge of the wilderness of northern Russia, where the winds blow cold and the snow falls many months of the year, a stranger with piercing blue eyes presents a new father with a gift – a precious jewel on a delicate chain, intended for his young daughter. Uncertain of its meaning, Pytor hides the gift away and Vasya grows up a wild, willful girl, to the chagrin of her family. But when mysterious forces threaten the happiness of their village, Vasya discovers that, armed only with the necklace, she may be the only one who can keep the darkness at bay”– Provided by publisher.

The Strawberry Heart’s Diner by Carolyn Brown; Being broke, unemployed, and stranded back in the tiny town of Pick, Texas, was not part of Jancy Wilson’s plan. Yet here she is, watching her car literally go up in smoke–along with her last-ditch hope of staying with her cousin in Louisiana. When Jancy spies a Help Wanted sign hanging in the window of the quaint Strawberry Hearts Diner, the memories of the two years she spent there as a teenager–and the lure of the diner’s beloved strawberry tarts–are enough to draw her in and plant her feet…but only temporarily. Raised by parents who refused to settle anywhere for long, Jancy has never known what it is to have roots. Now that Jancy’s swept up by the warmth and character of this quirky little community–and by the pull of an old crush–it’s beginning to feel like home. She’s making friends and even discovering the sweetness of falling in love. But when the town is threatened, Jancy knows it will take more than its legendary tarts to save it. Can she fight for this little Texas town–knowing she might not stay forever?

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline; “An exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyber-quest. Cline’s imaginative and rollicking coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.”–Booklist, starred review.

The Sunflower by Richard Paul Evans; is a contemporary romance in the Christmas Box series.

The Final Girls  by Riley Sager; Emerging as the lone survivor of a serial killer’s massacre a decade earlier, Quincy Carpenter struggles to ignore traumatic memories and move on as one of a group of other survivors who look to her for answers when one of them is found dead in a suspicious suicide.

Hidden figures : the American dream and the untold story of the Black women mathematicians who helped win the space race by Margot Lee Shetterly.

The Watchmen by Alan Moore; This stunning graphic novel chronicles the fall from grace of a group of superheroes plagued by all too human failings. The concept of the super hero is dissected and inverted as strangely realistic characters are stalked by an unknown assassin.

Eldest by Christopher Paolini; After successfully evading an Urgals ambush, Eragon is adopted into the Ingeitum clan and sent to finish his training so he can further help the Varden in their struggle against the Empire.

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kafur; Milk and honey is a collection of poetry and prose about survival. About the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. The book is divided into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose. Deals with a different pain. Heals a different heartache. Milk and honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look.

Get Your Sh*t Together: How to Stop Worrying about What you should do so you can finish what you need to do and start doing what you want to do by Sarah Knight;

:Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor; Who Fears Death, published in 2010 by DAW, an imprint of Penguin Books, is set in a fictionalized post-apocalyptic future version of Sudan, where the light-skinned Nuru oppress the dark-skinned Okeke. The protagonist, Onyesonwu (Igbo for “who fears death”), is an Ewu, the child of an Okeke woman raped by a Nuru man.

The Ice Twins by S.K. Treymayne; The Ice Twins’ is by turns a thriller, a mystery and a ghost story. Tremayne, the pseudonym for a London journalist and best-selling novelist, melds all these ingredients, coming up with enough twists, insights and chilly moments to make the story his – or her? – own and to keep a hungry reader savoring every spoonful. . . . A story set on an island known informally as Thunder deserves a thundering finish, which Tremayne deftly serves up, along with a touching coda that would play well on film.”―Washington Post.



Happy Holiday from the South Sioux City Public Library

This is that great holiday week when we think about good and happy things.  Phrases such as Merry, happy, comfort, and joy are on our mouths and on our purchases.  This week we focus on keeping the happy in the holidays.

Lose yourself in a Good Story: During the hectic holiday season, it is good to give yourself a vacation of the mind, by reading a good book.

The Lilac Bouquet by Carolyn Hart; “After three generations of Massey women with children out of wedlock, Emmy Jo Massey wants the whole town of Hickory, Texas, to witness the legitimacy of her union with Logan Grady. But dream weddings aren’t cheap. So she accepts a highly lucrative stint as a home health assistant to retired realtor, and town recluse, Seth Thomas– a decision her great-grandmother Tandy is dead-set against. Seth isn’t happy about it, either. The eighty-two-year-old doesn’t want a “babysitter” much less a Massey– something he makes clear when Emmy arrives at his house, an empty mansion built for the woman who broke his heart. But as Emmy stays and the two eventually open up to each other, she learns the reason behind a feud between Seth, Tandy, and Logan’s grandfather Jesse Grady that goes back six decades. She also uncovers a secret that forever changes how she sees her past and her future…”—from the catalogue record.

The Fire by Night by Teresa Messineo; “In war-torn France, Jo McMahon, an Italian-Irish girl from the tenements of Brooklyn, tends to six seriously wounded soldiers in a makeshift medical unit. Enemy bombs have destroyed her hospital convoy, and now Jo singlehandedly struggles to keep her patients and herself alive in a cramped and freezing tent close to German troops. There is a growing tenderness between her and one of her patients, a Scottish officer, but Jo’s heart is seared by the pain of all she has lost and seen. Nearing her breaking point, she fights to hold on to joyful memories of the past, to the times she shared with her best friend, Kay, whom she met in nursing school. Half a world away in the Pacific, Kay is trapped in a squalid Japanese POW camp in Manila, one of thousands of Allied men, women, and children whose fates rest in the hands of a sadistic enemy. Far from the familiar safety of the small Pennsylvania coal town of her childhood, Kay clings to memories of her happy days posted in Hawaii, and the handsome flyer who swept her off her feet in the weeks before Pearl Harbor…”—from the catalogue record.

Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips; is a fast paced thriller. “The zoo is nearly empty as Joan and her four-year-old son soak up the last few moments of playtime. They are happy, and the day has been close to perfect. But what Joan sees as she hustles her son toward the exit gate minutes before closing time sends her sprinting back into the zoo, her child in her arms. And for the next three hours–the entire scope of the novel–she keeps on running…” For whom should a mother risk her life?”– Provided by publisher.

Help Yourself to Happiness:  The following are a few books that will help you to find more happiness and to give it to others.

Brain rules for aging well: 10 principles for staying vital, happy, and sharp by John Medina; looks at the changes that happens to us as we age and gives us principles that will help us to live well as we age.

13 things mentally strong parents don’t do: raising self-assured children and training their brains for a life of happiness, meaning, and success by Amy Morin; teaches readers how to instill a life of happiness in their children.  While we are all at different levels of learning to be happy and successful, this book will give cues for what we should not do in order to be strong minded and to learn the same disciplines ourselves.

Adulthood for beginners: all the life secrets nobody bothered to tell you by Andy Boyle are a humorous look at what many people are never taught, awareness.  One of my dad’s favorite phrases to me and my wife was, Pay Attention!  Andy Boyle says the same thing more eloquently than dad.  This book will be especially helpful for young adults.

Movies for Families:  Our families watch a lot of movies during the holiday season.  These are a few you may like.

Boss Baby is an animated feature where seven-year-old Tim Templeton’s new baby brother strides in the front door wearing a suit and toting a briefcase, it is clear who is in charge and will be receiving all the attention of their parents.

Snow White is Disney’s first major animated production that holds up as well today as when it was created.  It is available in DVD and BluRay formats.

The Angry Birds Movie; an island is filled with happy, flightless birds; but their peaceful situation is interrupted when mysterious green piggies arrive on the island.

Music for the Holidays:  Some of us are enjoying holiday music and some of us are tired of it already.  These CDs will give you a great deal of variety for your listening pleasure.

A Pentatonix Christmas by Pentatonix; delivers a refreshing a capella sound to holiday music.

Losing My Religion by Kurt Franklin; brings his urban gospel to both fans of the genre and people who need to have uplift.  Some of the best songs on this CD are the title cut and Wanna Be Happy.  This is not your traditional holiday album.

G I R L by Pharrell Williams contains my absolute favorite song Happy that was done for the movie Minions.  The compilation mixes rap, rhythm and blues, rock, and pop music to make a lovely collection.  Duets with Justin Timberlake and Alicia Keys just add value as well.

This week in brief:  This week we have Tangled Yarns on Night of Fun on Tuesday at 6:00 p,m., Tuesday at 6:30 p.m., Bilingual Story Time is on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m., Pat-a-Cake Pals is on Thursday at 10:00 a.m., and Toddler Time is on Friday at 10:00 a.m..  The library will close on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. for the holiday and will reopen on Tuesday December 26th at 9:00 a.m.

Have a great week and read good books.

LearningExpress is Changing

The following is an email from EBSCO the new owners of LearningExpress.

The new LearningExpress platform will include changes in all LearningExpress products: LearningExpress Library™, PrepSTEP™, and LearningExpress Job & Career Accelerator™. The new interface allows users to:

  • Access content with fewer clicks and without the carousel
  • Easily read on all devices with responsive design
  • View all available resources on the home page
  • Take advantage of improved speed and performance, even on low bandwidths

The new look and changes in functionality will release in January 2018, and we will provide additional information as we get closer to the release date.

In the meantime, please contact Customer Support if you have any questions.