Archive for April, 2012

Book Sale Raises Thousands for KDL Fund

Monday, April 30th, 2012

Wow, Kent Countyites; you really love your book sales. And man, do we love that you love them…

Lines of eager used-book sale customers snaked around KDL’s Service Center on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It was elbow-to-elbow action all three days, but no crush of humans is more pleasant than book lovers getting bargains, so we’re happy to report there were no injuries or mishaps.



By the time the sale ended, the more than 20,000 used books and other materials we began the sale with had shrunk to about 10 boxes.

In all, we raised $13,872.60 for the KDL Fund’s early literacy initiatives, which means your love of reading has created more opportunities for children to foster their own love of reading. Yay all of us!


Posted by:

Guys Read @ KDL: Azizi Jasper

Monday, April 30th, 2012

Some boys are less motivated to read due to a lack of role models. They may think reading isn’t cool or is only for girls. Not true!

Meet local poet and really cool guy, Azizi Jasper:

“I found out how cool reading is when I realized how much information is in books that’s nowhere else, including the Internet.”

Favorite Book:
The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Alex Haley

Learn more about the exciting Guys Read initiative going on at KDL!


Posted by:

Celebrate Our New KDLville Play Spaces

Monday, April 30th, 2012

It’s party time! Celebrate with Katie L. the elephant as she cuts the ribbon and welcomes you to KDLville, our newest early literacy play spaces. Families with children ages 6 and younger are invited to have fun with crafts, games, balloon animals and KDLville cake!

The opening of the four KDLvilles below marks the completion of KDLville spaces in all 18 of our branches. KDLville spaces contain a variety of fun, developmentally appropriate activities that focus on different skills that help children get ready to read. Some examples might include a puppet theater, a play grocery store, a train table and pre-writing games. The activities will be rotated so patrons will get fresh experiences every couple months. Promotional materials that contain caregiver education on reading readiness are also be provided in the play spaces.

KDLville Ribbon-Cutting Parties will be held:
Saturday, May 5, 2:00 PM – Gaines Township branch
Wednesday, May 9, 10:30 AM – Comstock Park branch
Tuesday, May 15, 10:30 AM – Sand Lake/Nelson Township branch
Saturday, May 19, 11:00 AM – Tyrone Township branch

Posted by:

KDL Top Ten – 4/27/2012

Friday, April 27th, 2012

Find brave heroes and wicked villains at KDL!  To view 10 of the most popular Teen Science Fiction/Fantasy titles at KDL this month, click on the link to the KDL Top Ten List!

Posted by:

Early Lit Bits: Music Minute

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

Are you looking for a good CD to listen to? Did you get a chance to enjoy the Muppets movie with your family? If so, check out the soundtrack for the movie. This is a perfect way to relive the fun you had at the movie while singing along to the lively songs.

Singing with your child is a great way to get him ready to read. Singing and listening to music allows children to hear the notes in individual words.

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.


Posted by:

Phone System Issue

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

We are currently experiencing problems with our phone system. Thanks for your patience as we work to resolve this issue.

UPDATE: Phone service has been restored. You can once again reach us by calling 616-784-2007. Thanks for your patience!

Posted by:

Life after Friday Night Lights

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

It’s hard to say good-bye to the cast of Friday Night Lights if you’ve watched all five seasons of the addicting television drama set in the football town of Dillon, Texas. To ease yourself back from the end of the series, you can try some of these suggestions for Panther fans. 

Friday Night Lights by H.G. Bissinger was originally a book about the Permian Panthers of Odessa — read the true stories behind the series. Eagle Blue is another true-life story about a high school basketball team.

And don’t forget that there was a movie before the television series, with Billy Bob Thornton playing Coach — it will take you back to Dillon for a little bit longer. 

If you’re interested in another compelling television series, give Heroes a try. 

The movie Post-Grad stars Zach Gilford in a Matt Saracen-esque role. 

Want to read instead? There are some good football novels out there too: Playing for Pizza, Knights of the Hill Country, and Payback Time

And, for something different, Explosions in the Sky created music for both the movie and the television series. Give one of their CDs a listen. Hope this helps you! 

“Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose!”


Posted by:

Guys Read: West Michigan Whitecaps

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

Some boys are less motivated to read due to a lack of role models. They may think reading isn’t cool or is only for girls. Not true at KDL!

Meet the West Michigan Whitecaps!

(From left to right: Colin Kaline, Matt Perry, Dean Green and Warwick Saupold)

Despite all the time these guys spend on the field, they still realize the importance of taking time to read.

Fortunately KDL has them covered with lots of great books for sports fans of all ages.  Check out these book lists for kids, teens, and adults, or a recent post about Chris Crutcher, a popular teen author who writes books that center around athletes.

Also, don’t forget, there is 1 more week left to enter Guys Read to Win.  You could win an autographed copy of The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt, a book that prominently features Mickey Mantle and other players from the 1968 Yankees.  All you have to do is rate or review a book for Guys Recommend by the end of April and you are entered.

(From left to right: Warwick Saupold, Matt Perry, Colin Kaline and Dean Green)

Go Caps!


Posted by:

Teen Fun with Food

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Now that spring is here, it’s a great time to get involved with cooking using our Fun with Food booklist which showcases some of KDL’s diverse cookbooks geared toward teens.

If you have recently read or seen The Hunger Games, try The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook by Emily Baines.  Do you have a sweet tooth?  Give Teens Cook Dessert by Megan and Jill Carle a try!  Still too tame for your tastes?  There is always A Zombie Ate My Cupcake by Lily Vanilli and Lily Jones!

Stop by your local branch to checkout a copy today!

Posted by:

Tonight: Meet Author Caitlin Horrocks

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Local author Caitlin Horrocks will be at the East Grand Rapids branch at 7:00 PM tonight (Tuesday, April 24) to read from and sell and sign copies of her book of short stories, This Is Not Your City. For aspiring authors, she’ll also talk about what she calls “my twisty path” to getting the book published.

Horrocks is an assistant professor of writing at Grand Valley State University and a fiction editor at West Branch. She was born in Ann Arbor in 1980 and has lived in Ohio, Arizona, England, Finland and the Czech Republic.  Her stories and essays appear in The New Yorker, The Best American Short Stories 2011, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2009, The Pushcart Prize XXXV, The Paris Review, Tin House, One Story and elsewhere. Her work has won awards including the Plimpton Prize, a Bread Loaf Writers Conference Fellowship and scholarships from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and the Norman Mailer Writers Colony.

Horrocks’ appearance is part of KDL’s Celebrate the Mitten author series, which includes more than a dozen published authors from around the state appearing at various branches through May.

Posted by: