Archive for 2014

Early Childhood Essentials: Register Now

Saturday, December 20th, 2014

ECE classesParents and caregivers of children are invited to participate in free Early Childhood Essentials classes at KDL this spring. If you have young children or work in child care and need professional development hours, this series is for you. All of the presenters are certified and vetted through Great Start. The classes are for adults, and child care is not provided. Sponsored by Great Start to Quality.

Pre-registration is required. Sign up today by clicking on the links below or calling our Patron Services Department at 616-784-2007.

 

Schedule:

Communicating with Parents

Monday, January 12, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Wyoming Branch
Thursday, February 26, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Caledonia Twp. Branch

Setting the Stage

Saturday, January 17, 10:00 – 11:00 AM, Cascade Twp. Branch
Monday, January 19, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Krause Memorial (Rockford) Branch
Thursday, January 22, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Byron Twp. Branch

 So Much to Do, So Little Time

Saturday, January 24, 10:00 – 11:00 AM, Kentwood (Richard L. Root) Branch
Monday, February 9, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Wyoming Branch
Thursday, February 12, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Caledonia Twp. Branch

 Diversity

Saturday, January 24, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM, Kentwood (Richard L. Root) Branch
Monday, February 16, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Krause Memorial (Rockford) Branch
Thursday, February 19, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Caledonia Twp. Branch

Journaling with Young Children

Saturday, January 31, 10:00 – 11:30 AM, East Grand Rapid Branch

Keeping Kids Safe

Monday, February 2, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Krause Memorial (Rockford) Branch
Saturday, February 7, 10:00 – 11:00 AM, Cascade Twp. Branch
Thursday, February 19, 6:30 – 7:30 PM, Byron Twp. Branch


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Holiday Closing — Christmas Eve & Day

Friday, December 19th, 2014

The Kent District Library will be closed for the Christmas holidays Wednesday & Thursday December 24–25. We will resume normal operating hours on Friday, December 26. For additional 2015 holiday closing information, please view our holiday closings page.

 

We appreciate your patronage and wish you Happy Holidays!

 

Happy Holidays


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Children’s Author Norman Bridwell Died Last Friday

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

normanbridwell

The well-loved children’s author and illustrator, Norman Bridwell, has died at the age of 86. Of course, Norman Bridwell’s most memorable character is Clifford the Big Red Dog. Clifford was introduced in 1963 and has over 150 titles as well as an animated television series.

There will be two new titles released in 2015, Clifford Goes to Kindergarten and Clifford Celebrates Hanukkah.

 


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Teen Fiction and the New Fairy Tale

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Fairy tales are still around for a reason. They provide us with excellent heroes and heroines, exciting adventure, mystical magic, dastardly villains and maybe a little romance. Plenty of teen fiction writers are up to the challenge of keeping the genre fresh, giving the traditional tale a tempting twist.

Stitching SnowEverybody knows the story of Snow White, but you probably haven’t heard it like this before. R.C. Lewis’ Stitching Snow takes place on the planet Thanda, where the temperatures are always sub-zero. Princess Snow is missing, and the kingdom is near war. Essie, our heroine, is a programmer who controls seven loyal drones that work the local mines, and she’s about to get much closer to the war than she ever thought possible. When a ship crash lands near the mines, questions begin to pile up. Essie’s decisions could lead to peace or tragedy; and it may start with the decision to find her true home.

Cruel BeautyThe twists continue as we head into the ever-popular Beauty and the Beast (a personal favorite). Our beauty in Rosamund Hodge’s Cruel Beauty is not your typical “Belle.” For one, Nyx’s father is far from a friend. Nyx has been betrothed to the evil lord Ignifex since birth, a bad bargain by the hands of her father. But she isn’t going down easily. Sure, she’ll marry him—with the goal of ultimately assassinating him. Cruel Beauty flips good and evil on its head. Nyx must kill her Beast in order to save her people, but what of her charming enemy’s secrets? The enchanted castle will claim another victim.

Stolen SongbirdFairy tales also give us wonderful creatures, even if they happen to have human-like qualities. Think you know about trolls? Think again. In Danielle L. Jensen’s Stolen Songbird, the strong-willed Cecile is kidnapped, brought under the mountains and sold to the troll king. To break the curse that a witch placed long ago, Cecile must marry the prince.  When the wedding fails to break the curse, Cecile is stuck in their dreary world, but entranced by their knowledge and the prince’s treasonous plans. Magic and politics collide, and we get a new take on the monster beneath the mountain.

Poisoned AppliesIf you’re looking for a quick fix for your fairy tales, try Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty by Christine Heppermann. This collection takes the fairy tales you know and puts them alongside the life of the modern teenage girl. Much like Grimm’s original tales, it may not be so happily ever after. However, each poignant poem looks at the beauty and the beast: how girls are taught to think about themselves. From funny to dead serious, these bite-sized tales are reminiscent of Laurie Halse Anderson and Ellen Hopkins.

Fairy tales are being rewritten over and over because we love them. There are plenty more literature remixes than listed here, offering dozens of stories from classic to science fiction. Take a fresh look at where your favorite princes and princess stand. Whether good or evil, the magic of the fairy tale has never been more charming.


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Holiday Break Boredom Busters

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

happy holidays3Staying in town for Christmas break? We can help keep your kids happy, busy and entertained! Between The Wonderful WaterColorBot, Family Building Bricks Parties, a MarioKart Tournament and much more, there won’t be any time for boredom. Click here for a complete list of our programs taking place December 22 – January 4.

With your bank account a bit depleted after all that holiday shopping, don’t worry about spending money keeping your kids busy… all KDL programs are free!

 


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Watch Basketball, Watch Babies Win

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

First Steps kitPlanning on going to a Grand Rapids Drive game over your holiday break? Please consider bringing a new baby board book for KDL’s Play-Grow-Read to Your Baby program. Books will be collected at the games taking place on December 20, 27 and 28.

The Play-Grow-Read to Your Baby initiative introduces parents of newborns to the crucial role they play in the literacy development of their children.

Working in partnership with First Steps Kent, first-time parents in our service area are presented with a tote containing a:

  • Children’s board book
  • Baby snack cup
  • Library card registration
  • Baby Reading Guide

Swoosh indeed! Thank you!

 


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New Teen Booklist: Paranormal

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

Looking for a new spine-tingling new book to curl up with on a chilly winter night? Perhaps one featuring vampires, werewolves, or even the Grim Reaper? Check out this new booklist featuring great paranormal teen titles, with these books and more!

Croak      Raised by Wolves       Claire de Lune

Check out more booklists in KDL Recommends for Teens!

 


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January LibraryReads Staff Picks

Monday, December 15th, 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. As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust: A Flavia de Luce Novel LibraryReadsFavoriteAs Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust: A Flavia de Luce Novel
    by Alan Bradley
    “After the unexpected recovery of her mother’s body brings the de Luce’s family secrets to light, Flavia’s life is turned upside down. Now on her way to a Canadian boarding school, she must survive her first term — and more importantly, uncover the mystery of a corpse found in her dorm room chimney the night she arrives. A delightful installment in the series!”
    Lizzie Gall, Grand Rapids Public Library, Grand Rapids, MI
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  3. The Rosie EffectThe Rosie Effect: A Novel by Graeme Simsion
    “Don Tillman and Rosie are back again, and they’ve relocated to New York. Rosie is continuing her studies, while Don is teaching and even adding to his small circle of friends. But when Rosie announces that she is pregnant, Don is once again out of his depth. What follows are crazy situations that could only happen when Don is involved. Funny and heartwarming.”
    Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, CT
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  5. The Magician's Lie: A NovelThe Magician’s Lie: A Novel by Greer Macallister
    “Arden is a famous illusionist whose show involves sawing a man in half, but one night, she grabs an axe instead of a knife and her husband is found dead under the stage. Can Arden, an expert at deception, get away with murder — or is she really innocent? Recommended to anyone who likes historical fiction, strong women characters, and surprisingly twisty plots.”
    Paula Jones, Brockton Public Library, Brockton, MA
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  7. The Girl on the Train: A NovelThe Girl on the Train: A Novel by Paula Hawkins
    “Rachel is a washed-up thirty-something who creates a fantasy about the seemingly perfect couple she sees during her daily train ride into London. When the woman goes missing, Rachel manages to insert herself into the investigation of the woman’s disappearance. In the vein of Gone Girl, this dark psychological thriller is fast-paced and features some very unreliable narrators.”
    Andrea Larson, Cook Memorial Public Library, Libertyville, IL
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  9. Golden Son: Book II of the Red Rising Trilogy Golden Son: Book II of the Red Rising Trilogy by Pierce Brown
    “After reading Red Rising, I was looking forward to seeing more of the politics of this world. Darrow has infiltrated the Golds and works to bring them down from the inside, end their tyranny, and free his people. There’s so much political drama and action. Brown does a wonderful job describing it all through Darrow’s eyes. It’s exhausting, thrilling, and heartwrenching!”
    Nita Gill, Brookings Public Library, Brookings, SD
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  11. The Dress Shop of Dreams: A NovelThe Dress Shop of Dreams: A Novel by Menna van Praag
    “Tidy, romantic, and fine escapism. All the characters here have interesting back stories: Cora is believable as a no-nonsense gal trying to rebuff sweet Walt’s advances, and Etta is someone I’d like to meet in real life. Reminiscent of Love Actually and P.S. I Love You, this cute little book is recommended to readers who want to be charmed by the possibilities of love.”
    Andrienne Cruz, Azusa City Library, Azusa, CA
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  13. The Bishop's WifeThe Bishop’s Wife by Mette Ivie Harrison
    “As a practicing Mormon, I felt Harrison did a great job of detailing Mormon culture and doctrine without evangelizing. I appreciated that the bishop is a good man, and the bishop’s wife is a woman who has been through her own struggles. The bishop’s wife sometimes can barely keep up with all the drama and mysteries around her. But she does, and does it quite well under the circumstances. This is a rather brave book.”
    Amanda Monson, Bartow County Library System, Cartersville, GA
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  15. Vanessa and Her Sister: A NovelVanessa and Her Sister: A Novel by Priya Parmar
    “Told uniquely as part diary, part epistolary novel, Parmar focuses on the relationship of Vanessa (later Bell) and Virginia (later Woolf) Stephens, one filled with unspoken jealousy and a fierceness of love that will ultimately destroy their kinship. This well-researched novel with gorgeous prose brings the characters to life with a unique perspective.”
    Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ
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  17. First FrostFirst Frost by Sarah Addison Allen
    First Frost is a great continuation of the stories of sisters Claire and Sydney, and Sydney’s teenage daughter, Bay. Each of the Waverlys has their own somewhat supernatural gift, and all of them struggle with issues of identity and family. As with Allen’s previous works, this novel will appeal to fans of Alice Hoffman and readers who enjoy family stories that are not overflowing with angst and drama.”
    Lauren Mitchell, Pima County Libraries, Tucson, AZ
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  19. Full Throttle (Black Knights Inc.) Full Throttle (Black Knights Inc.) by Julie Ann Walker
    “Readers can always count on Walker to deliver a suspenseful, action-packed read, and she delivers on all counts. However, it isn’t the heart-pounding adventure that makes this a fabulous story — it’s the characters. Abby and Steady, college friends who were torn apart by a mutual loss, have great chemistry. Walker has created a complete and suspenseful narrative.”
    Vanessa Gempis, Dallas Public Library, Hampton-Illinois Library, Dallas, TX

 

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

 


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KDL on WGVU Radio — Winter Programs

Saturday, December 13th, 2014

Kip & Theresa at WGVUEach month KDL staff join Shelley Irwin on the WGVU Morning Show to talk about what’s going on at the library. This month, listen to Adult Services Librarians Kip Odell (Grandville Branch) and Theresa Duffy (Byron Township Branch) talk about our upcoming winter programs for adults, including:

•  Gluten-Free Lifestyle
•  KD aLe
•  Trash into Treasure
•  Zentangle
•  3D Paper Snowflakes
•  KDL Gives Back: Go Red for Women / SpartanNash Labels (coming in February)

They also recommended the following books that they are currently reading:

•  Theresa: The Southern Living Community Cookbook by Sheri Castle
•  Kip: Rogue Knight by Brandon Mull

Enjoy!

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download WGVU12-4-14.mp3

(photo courtesy of Shelley Irwin)

 


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World War II from the Other Side

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

The back of the box for “Generation War” calls it a “German ‘Band of Brothers.’” Starting in 1941 and ending with the war itself in 1945, “Generation War” in its scope—Germany, Russia, Poland—and cast of characters is certainly worth comparing with that epic HBO mini-series originally broadcast in 2001. The most important difference is the fact that this three-part series—each a feature-length movie—is purely from the German point of view. To be specific, two brothers, both soldiers; a nurse working behind the front lines, an aspiring singer, and a tailor who also happens to be Jewish. Believing the war will be over by Christmas (of 1941), these five young people are of course unaware of the horrors they are going to encounter. As viewers we watch them lose their innocence as the nightmare of Nazism and the world war envelope them.

There are a couple reasons I found this series compelling. For one, watching the story of the war in Europe from the German side rather than the American is powerful, giving us faces and voices that we wouldn’t normally encounter in a drama set in this era. Beyond that. though, the story gives us fully human characters—characters who start out agreeing with Hitler’s cause (or at least sympathetic to it) but, over the course of four brutal years, see its costs both in personal and national terms. These people draw our sympathy rather than our ire, and that of course makes us care for them, despite (or because of) their predicaments. The second reason “Generation War” (originally titled in German “Our Mothers, Our Fathers”—an apt title for younger generations to think about) works so well is its use of parallel stories—moving us from the Russian front to Berlin and occupied Poland, each character’s fate different than the other but united by the fact that these five were and are friends who ultimately want nothing more than to be reunited with each other and get on with their lives. I won’t give away the ending, other than to say that in its sadness and joy it brings us to a conclusion that is both sobering and believable.

 


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