Author Archive

KDL Closing at 5:00 PM Monday, Jan. 27

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Due to severe weather and travel conditions, KDL branches will close at 5:00 PM today (Monday, January 27). All evening programs are cancelled. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

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Yes, We’re Open!

Monday, January 27th, 2014


It’s a snow day for lots of kids in the area,
but KDL branches remain OPEN!
All programs will take place as scheduled.

Please drive carefully if you choose to visit us today.

UPDATE: Due to severe weather and travel conditions, KDL branches will be closing at 5:00 PM today (Monday, January 27).

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KDL Open 1:00 – 5:00 PM Sat., Jan. 25

Friday, January 24th, 2014

Due to severe weather and travel conditions, KDL will be open reduced hours on Saturday, January 25. Most branches will be open from 1:00 – 5:00 PM. Branches that normally close at 1:30 PM on Saturdays (Alpine Township, Alto, Englehardt, Spencer Township and Tyrone Township) will not be open. All morning programs are cancelled for the day. We apologize for the inconvenience.


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Updates to Mango Languages

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014


If “learn a new language” was one of your New Year’s resolutions, now is a great time to check out Mango Languages, one of the awesome resources offered by KDL. Mango is FREE to all KDL cardholders, and is an easy, effective way to learn to speak a foreign language. Courses are currently available in 60 foreign languages and 17 English as a Second Language (ESL) courses.

Mango has recently launched Mango Connect, a makeover of their user portal that will make it easier for language learners to access all the language-learning products available to them and keep track of their progress. Here are the details:

  • The new dashboard is organized so that users simply select a language from the list and can then see all the products available to them in that language — traditional language courses (“Mango Conversations”), foreign language movies from Mango Premiere, and children’s courses from Little Pim (coming soon to KDL!)

    Find a Conversation       Mango Spanish 

  • The old Basic and Complete 2.0 courses have been consolidated into a single product now called Mango Conversations. Any remaining Complete 1.0 courses have been “retired,” but access to the “classic portal” containing these courses will still be available until June 2, so users will have plenty of time to finish the course. 
  • Mango has also released new placement tests for 17 of their most popular languages, so those who need to make the switch from the old 1.0 courses to the new Mango Conversations (or those of us who may have studied a language in high school but have since forgotten most of it…) can easily determine where they should start. The link to the placement test is located on the Welcome Screen for those languages:

    Mango Placement Test 
  • Users can now create a custom profile page which stores their picture, study history and preferred language settings:

    Mango Profile

  • In addition to the existing iOS and Android apps, Mango now has a mobile app available for Kindle and NOOK devices as well.

If you’re a current user of Mango Languages and have any questions about the change to the new portal, you can contact Mango’s Customer Service at 1-877-MANGO-11 or And if you haven’t used it before, watch the video below to see Mango Languages in action, then start learning a new language today!


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KDL on WZZM — Healing with Green Smoothies

Saturday, January 18th, 2014

Linda Carrington and East Grand Rapids Branch Manager Dawn Lewis recently appeared on WZZM to talk about Healing with Green Smoothies:

Linda will demonstrate using natural plant oils with natural green smoothies to help target health challenges at these upcoming programs:

Monday, February 3, 6:30 PM – Kentwood branch
Monday, February 24, 6:30 PM – Sand Lake / Nelson Township branch

She also will present Medicine Cabinet Makeover, discussing natural solutions that can be safer, cheaper and more effective than over-the-counter medications:

Thursday, January 23, 6:30 PM – Gaines Township branch
Thursday, January 30, 6:00 PM – Walker branch

Pre-registration is required for both programs.


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February LibraryReads Staff Picks

Friday, January 17th, 2014

You already know that your local KDL staff provide great recommendations when you’re looking for your next favorite book. Now library staff across the nation have connected to offer LibraryReads, a nationwide “Top 10″ list of favorite titles each month! Check out these upcoming titles that librarians across the country have read, loved, and want to share with you:

  1. Red RisingLibraryReadsFavoriteRed Rising by Pierce Brown
    The next great read for those who loved The Hunger Games. This story has so much action, intrigue, social commentary and character development that the reader who never reads science fiction will happily overlook the fact that the story takes place on Mars far in the future. The characters are perfectly flawed, causing the reader to feel compassion and revulsion for both sides. Can’t wait for the next installment!”
    —Cindy Stevens, Pioneer Library System, Canandaigua, NY

  3. The Good Luck of Right NowThe Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick
    “Socially-awkward 40-year-old Bartholomew has lived with his mother all his life and has never held a job. When she succumbs to cancer, he channels her favorite actor, Richard Gere, to make her happy during her last days. Funny and sad, with moving, unsentimental prose and a quick, satisfying pace. Highly recommended.”
    —Michael Colford, Boston Public Library, Boston, MA

  5. This Dark Road to MercyThis Dark Road to Mercy by Wiley Cash
    “Cash’s second novel is as good as his first. In this story, we meet Easter and her sister Ruby, who have been shuffled around the foster care system in Gastonia, North Carolina. Then their ne’er-do-well father whisks them away in the middle of the night. I was on the edge of my seat as I followed the girls’ tale and hoping for a safe outcome. Fans of A Land More Kind Than Home will enjoy this book as well.”
    —Robin Nesbitt, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH

  7. The MartianThe Martian by Andy Weir
    “An edge-of-your seat debut thriller with laugh-out-loud dialogue mixed in. After a bad storm cuts his team’s Mars mission short, injured astronaut Mark Watley is stranded. Now he’s got to figure out how to survive without air, shelter, food, or water on the harsh Martian landscape until the next manned mission in four years. It’s Science Fiction with a capital S, but Weir does a fabulous job of making it accessible to non-science geeks (like me).”
    —Dan Brooks, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

  9. After I'm GoneAfter I’m Gone by Laura Lippman
    “So much fun to read. In Lippman’s newest book, bookie Felix Brewer goes missing just before his indictment because he can’t stand the thought of spending years in prison. He leaves behind a wife, three young daughters, a mistress, and Burt, his best friend and attorney. Enter retired police detective Sandy Bayard who works as a consultant on cold cases. A delicious bon bon!”
    —Anne Lee, Free Library of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA

  11. RippeRipperr by Isabel Allende
    “Allende does an amazing job of developing characters in this taut, suspenseful literary thriller. The story has a lightning-fast denouement, and the mystery is artfully styled to keep the reader guessing.”
    —Amanda Viana, Norton Public Library, Norton, MA


  13. The Ghost of the Mary CelesteThe Ghost of the Mary Celeste by Valerie Martin
    “A cargo ship sailing from New York to Italy is discovered empty and drifting near Gibraltar in the 1870s. The mystery brings grief to two Massachusetts seafaring families and ignites the public’s imagination, including one Arthur Conan Doyle, who authors a fantastical magazine piece that purports to be an account by the ship’s doctor. Crossing time and space, this wide-ranging story proves Martin once again to be a master of the historical novel.”
    —Margaret Donovan, Cary Memorial Library, Lexington, MA

  15. The Wife, the Maid, and the MistressThe Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress by Ariel Lawhon
    “A captivating mystery, based on the real-life disappearance of New York Supreme Court Judge Joseph Crater. Told through the voices of the three women closest to Judge Crater—his trophy wife, his beautiful maid, and his Broadway starlet mistress—this is excellent historical fiction, about the era of Prohibition and the culture of 1930s New York City. Riveting characters make for a quick and entertaining read.”
    —Mary Vernau, Tyler Public Library, Tyler, TX

  17. The Winter PeopleThe Winter People by Jennifer McMahon
    “The small Vermont town of West Hall has been the scene of mysterious deaths, disappearances, and ghost sightings. The scattered pages of a turn-of-the-century diary relate the events that lead to a murder and the apparent beginning of all the trouble. Odd and intriguing clues emerge, and the final conclusion is thrilling.”
    —Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH

  19. E. E. CummingsE. E. Cummings: A Life by Susan Cheever
    “Cummings is a pivotal figure in the creation of modern verse, and Cheever conveys his journey with color, warmth, and understanding, especially his imprisonment in France during the First World War, his father’s death and his final reunion with his daughter. She leaves the reader with only one wish: to be a fly on the wall while the poet held forth to his friends.”
    —Linda Jeffries-Summers, Howard County Library, Columbia, MD


See for more information and find your next great read!


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KDL Closed Monday, January 20

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

All Kent District Library branches will be closed on Monday, January 20 for an All Staff professional development day. While we regret any temporary inconvenience this may cause, KDL’s commitment to staff training is one of the reasons we are able to provide you with such great service. Please pardon our absence, and we’ll all be back on Tuesday, January 21!



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New Zinio Magazines Available

Friday, January 10th, 2014


Our Zinio digital magazine service now has even more of your favorite titles! We’ve added subscriptions to the following new magazines that you can download and enjoy for FREE on your computer or mobile device:

  • Backpacker
  • The Beer Connoisseur Magazine
  • Bicycling
  • Country Gardens
  • Diabetic Living
  • Digital Photo Pro
  • Discover
  • Do It Yourself
  • Gluten-Free Living
  • Guideposts
  • Guitar Player
  • House Beautiful
  • Horse & Rider
  • Kiplinger’s Personal Finance
  • Natural Health
  • OK! Magazine
  • Outdoor Life
  • Poets & Writers Magazine
  • Prevention
  • Publishers Weekly
  • Traditional Home
  • Utne Reader
  • VegNews Magazine
  • Woodworker’s Journal
  • The Writer
  • Yoga Journal


               Discover     Do It Yourself     House Beautiful

               OK! Magazine     Poets & Writers     Prevention

Click here to view a complete list of all titles offered through Zinio.

Happy Downloading!


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January LibraryReads Staff Picks

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

You already know that your local KDL staff provide great recommendations when you’re looking for your next favorite book. Now library staff across the nation have connected to offer LibraryReads, a nationwide “Top 10″ list of favorite titles each month! Check out these upcoming titles that librarians across the country have read, loved, and want to share with you:

  1. The Dead in Their Vaulted ArchesLibraryReadsFavoriteThe Dead in Their Vaulted Arches: A Flavia de Luce Novel
    by Alan Bradley
    “Flavia de Luce is still on the loose! This time, the almost-twelve-year-old prodigy explores some tantalizing mysteries involving her own family. Flavia uncovers surprising secrets about the characters we know and love and meets some fascinating new people, including a precocious distant cousin. You’ll enjoy seeing new depths in Flavia — this novel takes the series in an exciting direction.”
    Nancy Russell, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH

  3. A Star for Mrs. BlakeA Star for Mrs. Blake by April Smith
    “A little-known slice of American history receives meticulous, elegant treatment in this compelling novel about a group of mothers who travel to post-WWI Europe to visit the graves of their fallen soldier-sons. Cora Blake, grieving the loss of her only child, pulls the group together to provide support on their difficult pilgrimage. Sure to be a sleeper hit with book groups looking for heart-tugging history.”
    Kaite Stover, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, MO

  5. Lost LakeLost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen
    “I was thrilled to find out that Sarah Addison Allen had a new book out, and it did not disappoint. Allen’s trademark magic is woven throughout the story and can be found in the lake, the town, and the people, but at its heart, this story is about finding home — something we can all relate to.”
    Ally Watkins, Central MS Regional Library System, Pearl, MS

  7. The Days of Anna MadrigalThe Days of Anna Madrigal by Armistead Maupin
    “So good to see all these beloved characters again! And we finally get the true story of Anna Madrigal. If you’re either a fan of the Tales of the City series, Burning Man or both, this is a fun Sunday-afternoon kind of book.”
    Jenne Bergstrom, San Diego County Library, San Diego, CA

  9. A Highly Unlikely ScenarioA Highly Unlikely Scenario, or a Neetsa Pizza Employee’s Guide to Saving the World
    by Rachel Cantor
    “Leonard works for Neetsa Pizza, a Pythagorean pizza chain, in the near-ish future. His job is to take calls, listen to complaints and help his customers achieve maximum pizza happiness. His employee manual gives him an answer for every scenario — until he gets a call from Marco, who seems to be calling from another time or space. Think of Terry Pratchett crossed with Douglas Adams.”
    Jane Jorgenson, Madison Public Library, Madison, WI

  11. The Wind Is Not a RiverThe Wind Is Not a River by Brian Payton
    “A tender love story about a reporter stranded during World War II on one of the Aleutian Islands, and his feisty wife, who travels to find him. The geographical and historical setting of American warfare in the North Pacific, little known to most, is very intriguing. Readers will fall in love with the main characters’ fierce determination to survive and love against all odds.”
    Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI

  13. OrfeoOrfeo by Richard Powers
    “Experimental music and genetic engineering? Heady stuff indeed, but what is most remarkable about this thought-provoking journey is how intensely it makes you feel about human creativity, experience, and the enigmatic fugitive Peter Els, whose flight from an uncomprehending world anchors the narrative. A perfect introduction to this brilliant but sometimes forbidding author.”
    David Wright, Seattle Public Library, Seattle, WA

  15. The KeptThe Kept by James Scott
    “Scott has written a haunting novel about two characters who are tormented by regret and guilt and who do all the wrong things to find redemption. Beautiful writing and unforgettable characters mark this first novel that has been compared to the work of Cormac McCarthy and Michael Ondaatje.”
    Alison Kastner, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR

  17. Little FailureLittle Failure: A Memoir by Gary Shteyngart
    Little Failure is the marvelous tale of the Shteyngart family’s journey from Leningrad to Queens in the 1970s. Gary Shteyngart captures an amazing snapshot of that time in history, and this engaging memoir is suffused with conflict, love, and a lot of hilarity.”
    Laura Scott, Park Ridge Public Library, Park Ridge, IL

  19. The First True LieThe First True Lie by Marina Mander
    “An unusual, well-written story told by a young boy who lives with his talented, but troubled mother in a city apartment in Italy. One morning, Luca finds his mother dead, and his worst fears paralyze him. How long can he hide the truth from his teachers and classmates? Luca uses what he loves most, words, to reach a place where he can finally open the door to others. An excellent reading group selection.”
    Margaret Donovan, Cary Memorial Library, Lexington, MA


See for more information and find your next great read!


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Free Computer & Technology Classes

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

Winter Computer Class BrochureWhether you’re a computer novice or looking to update your skills, KDL’s free computer classes can help you learn something new! Registration opens today for our February classes:

  • Digital Photos: Creating Digital Photo Movies
  • Digital Photos: Online Photo Editing Fun
  • Digital Photos: Online Photo Sharing, Saving and Ordering
  • Gadgets: B.Y.O. eReader & Tablet Users Group
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Internet: Create Your Own Website or Blog
  • Internet: Email Basics
  • Internet: Facebook Basics
  • Internet: Online Genealogy Research I & II
  • Internet: Online Resources for Book Lovers
  • Internet: Online Security
  • Internet: Parents’ Tips for Homework Help
  • Microsoft Excel Basics I, II & III
  • Microsoft Office Workshop
  • Microsoft PowerPoint Basics
  • Microsoft Word Basics I, II & III
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Developing Your Personal Brand (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Communicating Your Brand (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Networking Strategies (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: LinkedIn Boot Camp
    (pre-registration not required if you provide your own laptop)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Behavioral Interviewing & Effective Negotiating Strategies
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Speak to a Geek (pre-registration not required)

For class descriptions and schedule, please see our brochure or search our events calendar.

Unless otherwise noted, pre-registration is required and will begin the month before the scheduled classes on the first Monday of each month for KDL cardholders and the second Monday for non-KDL cardholders (if space is still available):

  • February classes: Registration begins Monday, January 6 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, January 13 for non-KDL cardholders)

To register, please call 616-784-2007.

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