KDL Blog ‘Books & More’ Category

October LibraryReads Staff Picks

Saturday, September 13th, 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 (including one recommended by KDL’s own Vanessa Walstra!).

  1. A Sudden LightLibraryReadsFavoriteA Sudden Light: A Novel by Garth Stein
    “Garth Stein has given us a masterpiece. This beautiful story takes readers on a thrilling exploration of a family estate brimming with generations of riveting Riddell family ghosts and secrets. This is a true exploratory novel, taking readers through secret passageways, hidden rooms, and darkened corridors that engage all of the senses.”
    Whitney Gayle, James Blackstone Memorial Library, Branford, CT
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  3. Leaving TimeLeaving Time: A Novel by Jodi Picoult
    Leaving Time is a love story—love between mother and child, love between soulmates, and love between elephants. The story is told from a variety of narrators, all of whom are broken and lost. Jenna is searching for answers to the disappearance of her mother, and seeks the help of a retired police detective and a psychic. Alice, Jenna’s mom, disappeared after a tragic accident at the elephant sanctuary, and her work with the elephants is fascinating and touching. The book is an ode to motherhood in all its forms—the good, bad and the ugly—and it is brilliant.”
    Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX
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  5. As You WishAs You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride
    by Cary Elwes with Joe Layden
    “Even if you don’t have a crush on Cary Elwes, you’ll enjoy this vivid behind-the-scenes account of the making of The Princess Bride. His stories, especially those involving Andre the Giant, will leave you in stitches. Robin Wright, Mandy Patinkin, Billy Crystal, and others also recount their experiences. An amusing account of a group of performers who came together to make a heartfelt film that is loved by many.”
    Emily Weiss, Bedford Public Library, Bedford, IN
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  7. Not My Father's SonNot My Father’s Son: A Memoir by Alan Cumming
    “This memoir focuses on Cumming’s reaction to being told that his father was not, in fact, his father. An appearance on the UK’s Who Do You Think You Are was meant to reveal the mystery behind what happened to Cumming’s maternal grandfather. Instead, his father’s admission leads Cumming to resolve long-held memories of verbal abuse. Cumming is extremely open, allowing readers to share in his pain and understand his relationships.”
    Tracy Babiasz, Alachua County Library District, Newberry, FL
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  9. Some LuckSome Luck: A Novel by Jane Smiley
    “Smiley’s latest is a love song to American farms and the people who keep them. This glorious and heartfelt novel chronicles the lives of an Iowan farm family over 30 years, beginning in 1920. Family members are born, grow, change, and die. Readers follow their triumphs and crushing losses and, along the way, learn about the evolution of farming and society in the United States. Definitely one of the best novels of 2014.”
    Laurie Van Court, Douglas County Libraries, Parker, CO
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  11. The Boy Who Drew MonstersThe Boy Who Drew Monsters: A Novel by Keith Donohue
    “Emotionally scarred by a near-drowning experience, young Jack Keenan spends all his time indoors, fanatically preoccupied with drawing strange things. While Jack’s parents chalk his drawings up to the imagination, Nick, Jack’s only friend, notices mysterious things happen whenever Jack picks up a pencil. This detailed coming-of-age tale with a twist offers unique insights into boyhood friendships and the complexities of adult relationships.”
    Courtney Block, Charlestown Clark County Public Library, Charlestown, IN
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  13. The Life We BuryThe Life We Bury by Allen Eskens
    “In this well-crafted debut novel, Joe Talbert has finally left home, but not without guilt over leaving his autistic brother in the care of his unreliable mother. A college assignment gets the young man entangled in a cold case, racing to clear the name of a Vietnam veteran. Characters with layers of suppressed memories and emotions only add to the suspenseful plot. Looking forward to more from this Minnesotan author!”
    Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI
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  15. ReunionReunion: A Novel by Hannah Pittard
    “When Kate learns that her estranged father has committed suicide, she and her siblings travel to Atlanta to bury him and work out years of resentment. Life seems overwhelming to Kate as she battles with infidelity, divorce, and a massive debt. It’s only when she takes a good look at herself that she begins to heal the rift in her family. Unfolding like a saga, this short book packs a punch.”
    Elizabeth Kanouse, Denville Public Library, Denville, NJ
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  17. MaliceMalice: A Mystery by Keigo Higashino
    “Detective Kaga is investigating the murder of best-selling author Kunihiko Hidaka. Hidaka’s wife and best friend both have rock-solid alibis, but Kaga discovers that the friendship might not have been what it seemed. A classic cat-and-mouse game with twists that keep the pages turning.”
    Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA
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  19. Murder at the BrightwellMurder at the Brightwell: A Mystery by Ashley Weaver
    “Lovers of Agatha Christie and Jacqueline Winspear will enjoy this elegant murder mystery set on holiday at the English seaside What starts out as a lark, intended to make Amory Ames’s misbehaving-but-oh-so-delicious husband jealous, turns into a dangerous and deadly game of whodunit for Amory and her friends. Love, jealousy, and revenge are tangled together in this smart and sophisticated British mystery reminiscent of the genre’s golden age.”
    Vanessa Walstra, Kent District Library, East Grand Rapids, MI

 

See http://libraryreads.org for more information and find your next great read!

 


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KDL Top Ten — Easy Readers

Friday, September 12th, 2014

This week’s Top Ten list features 10 of the most popular Easy Readers at KDL right now. Stop in and grab entertaining books for your beginning reader today!

KDL Top Ten Easy Readers 9-12-2014


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New Fall Books for Kids

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

dog and bear

Dog and Bear: Tricks and Treats by Laura Vaccaro Seeger has three short, funny Halloween themed stories about friends Dog and Bear.

 

katy duck

In Katy Duck’s Happy Halloween by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, Katy Duck is perfectly happy with her dancing unicorn costume until she sees Alice’s shimmering glimmering mermaid costume. Happily, all ends well as they skip off to trick-or-treat together.

 

dog days of school

Kelly DiPucchio has an amusing new book, Dog Days of School, in which young Charlie gets his wish to trade places with his dog Norman. Waking up in Norman’s bed, he is happy to sleep in, stare out the window for hours, and meet other dogs. Soon, however, he finds that being sent to the doghouse isn’t very fun.

 

winter is coming

Winter is Coming by Tony Johnston is a lovely, quiet story about a small girl who observes and sketches various animals getting ready for the coming of winter.

 

Ask your branch’s youth librarian for these stories or other new fall and Halloween books for kids.

 


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Celebrate the Season with Fall Programs

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Kent District Library is celebrating the fall season with a couple of programs that are sure to get the entire family into the spirit of autumn.  We hope you will join us for some fall fun!

Fall Mixed Up
Leaves float up and squirrels fly south! Celebrate this topsy-turvy season with zany stories, songs and activities centered around the book Fall Mixed Up by Bob Raczka. For ages 6 and younger.

Thursday, September 18, 10:00 AM – Englehardt (Lowell) Branch
Saturday, September 27, 10:30 AM – Gaines Township Branch
Saturday, September 27, 1:30 PM – Sand Lake/Nelson Township Branch
Sunday, September 28, 2:00 PM – East Grand Rapids Branch
Tuesday, September 30, 6:30 PM – Krause Memorial (Rockford) Branch
Tuesday, October 7, 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM – Grandville Branch
Tuesday, October 7, 1:00 PM – Byron Township Branch
Monday, October 13, 9:45 AM, 11:00 AM and 7:00 PM – Plainfield Township Branch
Wednesday, October 15, 9:45 AM – Plainfield Township Branch
Thursday, October 16, 9:45 AM – Plainfield Township Branch
Thursday, October 23, 10:00 AM – Kentwood (Richard L. Root) Branch
Monday, October 27, 9:45 and 10:30 AM – Walker Branch
Tuesday, October 28, 10:00 AM – Alpine Township Branch
Wednesday, October 29, 10:00 AM – Walker Branch
Wednesday, November 5, 10:00 AM – Tyrone Township Branch
Monday, November 10, 10:30 AM – Alto Branch
Tuesday, November 11, 6:30 PM – Comstock Park Branch
Wednesday, November 12, 10:30 AM – Comstock Park Branch

 

Awesome Autumn Adventure
Celebrate the season with autumn crafts, pumpkin decorating, games and bountiful farmyard fun! Please bring your own pumpkin. For all ages.

Wednesday, October 15, 10:00 AM – Walker Branch
Saturday, October 18, 10:30 AM – Gaines Township Branch
Tuesday, October 21, 6:30 PM – Krause Memorial (Rockford) Branch
Thursday, October 23, 6:30 PM – Caledonia Township Branch
Saturday, October 25, 10:30 AM – Alto Branch
Saturday, October 25, 2:00 PM – Kentwood (Richard L. Root) Branch
Sunday, October 26, 2:00 PM – East Grand Rapids Branch
Monday, October 27, 6:30 PM – Byron Township Branch
Tuesday, October 28, 6:30 PM – Comstock Park Branch
Wednesday, October 29, 10:30 AM – Comstock Park Branch
Thursday, October 30, 10:00 AM – Englehardt (Lowell) Branch

 

Branch locations can be found here.

 


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KDL Top Ten — Most Popular Items

Friday, September 5th, 2014

Tell us: What’s the best book you’ve read or movie you’ve watched this summer? And while you’re here, take a look at this week’s Top Ten! These are ten of the most popular items right now at KDL:

KDL Top Ten Most Popular 9-5-2014


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New Adult Booklists!

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Adult Booklists logo-page-0Plenty of places to find a great book to read this fall:

To view other booklists prepared by Kent District Library, be sure to check out the KDL Recommends section of our website.

Studying college students

 

 


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Movie and Discussion Time!

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

The Plainfield Township Branch would like to invite all interested adults to come to a special screening of the film “Friday Night Lights” on Saturday, October 4, with pizza served at 12:30 PM and the film beginning at 1:00 PM. After our viewing, we will hold a discussion of the film and some of the themes explored. The movie, originally released in 2004, is based on the nonfiction book by H.G. Bissinger that was published in 1990. The story centers on a small town in Texas where high school football is the reigning passion, and the players are the heroes of the town. Here is a description:

Odessa is an oil town in the western part of Texas that is home to the Permian High School Panthers, the football team with the best winning record. The city’s economy is in a tailspin, but football is the one thing that brings all the people of Odessa together, and on Friday nights, as many as 20,000 people fill Permian’s football stadium to watch Coach Gary Gaines lead the team to victory. And in Odessa, a football victory is prized above all else. The players ponder the fact that a championship season can be as much a burden as a triumph.

The movie also spawned a popular television series, which ran for five seasons.

Though we will be discussing the movie and not the book (or the TV series), we encourage anyone attending to read the book ahead of time if they’d like and bring whatever questions or comments they’ve gleaned from it to our discussion.

 


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You Decide Who Runs the Race!

Monday, September 1st, 2014

Genre DerbyWhat are your favorite reads at KDL? KDL’s Genre Derby, our online campaign to raise money for collections, will be returning in February, and we need you to vote on which genres make it to the starting gate. Fill out this short survey and the genres with the most votes will make the cut.

Last year, the Genre Derby raised over $6,000 for collections at KDL! Romance received the most donations, but every genre was a winner.

 

 


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Early Lit Bits: Book Review – “Thank You, Octopus”

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

Thank You, Octopus by Darren Farrell

Bedtime ahoy! In this silly story, we find that Octopus might not be the best choice for getting his little buddy ready for bed. Octopus helps brush teeth with a paint brush and attempts to rock (and roll) Buddy to sleep. The action takes place on a boat and colorful, quirky illustrations carry the nautical theme throughout the book. Invite your child to respond as you read together. They will likely be repeating, “No thank you, Octopus” by the end of the story. Talk about the pictures and ask your child what Octopus should really be doing at bedtime. Can you think of a funny way to change one of your bedtime routines? Reading a bedtime story each night and talking together are fantastic ways to get your child ready to read!

— Liz W. at KDL’s Plainfield Township Branch


 

This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.

 


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KDL Top Ten — Football

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Snap up books on all your favorite football teams and players in our SPORTS FOOTBALL collection. To get you started, here’s a highlight reel showcasing 10 of the most checked-out titles in this section:

KDL Top Ten Football 8-29-2014


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