Spring Break Fun!

March 29th, 2015

SpringStaying in town for spring break? We can help keep your kids happy, busy and entertained… and we may even sneak in a little education (but they will never know)! Between Celebrate Spring with Butterflies, Fantastic Flying FunGaming Unplugged: Board Game Boredom Busters and much more, there won’t be any time for boredom.

Click here for a complete list of our programs taking place April 3 – 12.

And if you are heading to the sunny south for break, make sure to stop in your local branch and stock up on some great vacation reads.

Wishing everyone a safe and fun spring vacation!

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KDL Director Appointed to Wayne State University Advisory Board

March 26th, 2015

While we are always proud of our dynamic director, today we have special reason for it.Lance small2012

The Advisory Board for the School of Library and Information Science at Wayne State University has appointed Kent District Library Director Lance Werner to serve on their board.

“I am honored to be appointed to the SLIS Advisory Board. This is a wonderful opportunity to help shape the future of library education in Michigan,” said Werner. “I look forward to working with my alma mater in this capacity.”

The SLIS Advisory Board is made up of 14 members who offer advice and suggestions related to the school’s strategic direction and programmatic initiatives. The Board works to ensure Wayne State University continues to prepare library professionals who are equipped to meet the evolving needs of libraries and information agencies.

That’s our fearless leader. Rocking libraries, and librarians, now and into the future.


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Happy 50th, Sound of Music!

March 26th, 2015

Fifty years ago this month, the Sound of Music was released, and it certainly has aged well. The songs still feel fresh and captivating, the choreography is fun, and the romance…well romance never goes out of style. There is much to say about this great film, its legacy (including this video!), and amazing performers, but its real trademark is how enjoyable it is for all ages. To that point, a 50th anniversary DVD and blu-ray has recently been released! Place your holds now and so long, farewell!

Sound of Music        Sound of Music blu ray

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World War Nonfiction

March 25th, 2015

Ifrozenintimef you are looking for an interesting nonfiction read about World War II, give “Frozen in Time” by Mitchell Zuckoff a try.  This is a very well written book that starts with the crash of an U.S. cargo ship into the Greenland ice cap and includes the subsequent rescue attempts.  But the other portion of the book is a modern attempt to locate and recover the one of the rescue crafts, a U.S. Coast Guard Grummand Duck amphibious craft.  Both stories will have you hoping for a successful rescue despite the harsh weather deadwakeconditions.

2015 marks the 100 year anniversary of the sinking of the Lusitania, a luxury ocean liner.  Erik Larson’sDead Wake” is set around that sinking and brings to life some of the key figures and events leading up to that disaster which facilitated the entry of the USA into World War I.  Plus as a bonus, the book has a really great cover!





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Spring Seed Library Programs with Rick Vuyst

March 21st, 2015

flowerland logoGet a Good Swift Kick in the Plants!
Learn the 10 secrets to success from gardening guru Rick Vuyst and experience his contagious passion for gardening as a happy and healthy lifestyle. Also known as “Mr. Green Thumb,” Rick is the host of the popular radio program airing Saturday mornings on NewsRadio WOOD 1300, a frequent guest on WZZM-TV 13, CEO of Flowerland and blogger at thankyouverymulch.com.
Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 6:30 PM, Cascade Twp.
Saturday, April 18, 2015, 12:00 PM, Alpine Twp.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015, 6:30 PM, Wyoming

Fourteen KDL branches are seed-lending libraries (our Comstock Park Branch recently was added — woo-hoo!). Find out more here.

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Two New Foreign War-Era DVDs

March 20th, 2015

The after-effects of a war can be as powerful and decisive as a war itself—it may be won, but the battle for other things, such as the ideas that spawned it in the first place, may continue to live on and manifest themselves in ways subtle or not so subtle.

Such is the case with two new DVD releases of foreign films, both based on true stories, one from the Czech Republic, the other from Argentina. “Burning Bush” shows how ordinary Czechoslovakians reacted to the trauma of Soviet and Warsaw Pact troops invading their country in August 1968, thus ending the period of greater freedom known as the Prague Spring. The decision of a young man, a college student, to douse himself in gas and set himself on fire—an event apparently meant to mirror the end of political freedom brought about by the Soviet Union—is the opening scene for this long, but nevertheless riveting drama that was originally shown on Czech television. The self-immolation, which takes place in a public square in Prague, naturally sends officials into a panic, knowing as they do that this suicide, like the one done by a Buddhist monk in Vietnam several years earlier, is meant to show the grief of many over having their country invaded. Enter Dagmar, a lawyer, who is asked by the mother of the young man to make sure her son’s name is not dishonored by the lies she knows the government is using against his memory. Dagmar does her best, but her work is also being actively opposed and monitored by a government that can no longer tolerate the freedoms it once allowed. Highly recommended.

The German Doctor” is about Joseph Mengele, that most infamous of Nazi doctors, who escaped along with a number of his compatriots to South America in the immediate aftermath of World War II. The state of Israel is hunting for these men, and Mengele is hiding out in rural Argentina under another name, but he soon ends up in a German school far from the city that is clearly an enclave of Nazi sympathizers. He has also befriended a family, and one of the children, a daughter named Lilith, catches his eye as a potential patient. Lilith is somewhat small for her age (she is 12), and the doctor has a potential solution, a growth hormone he’s been working on. Lilith’s mother is also pregnant, with twins. (Those who know anything about Mengele will find that frightening in itself.) Set in 1960, in a world unto itself (both culturally and geographically), the film has a slow, ominous build-up to a scarily atmospheric ending. Though occasionally lacking in its use of suspense, the film nevertheless delivers a potent dramatization of how long justice can be delayed, and evil lingers on long after it has supposedly been defeated.

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Free Access to lynda.com

March 18th, 2015

lynda_logo3r-d_144xKDL patrons now have access to lynda.com, which offers high quality online video tutorials on a huge range of topics! These are available on demand, so you can access them at any time.

Enjoy unlimited access to lynda.com’s vast library of high-quality, current and engaging video tutorials taught by recognized industry experts. More than 3,000 courses are available to help anyone learn business, technology and creative skills to achieve personal and professional goals.

This new resource is listed under the Online Learning category of our Reference Resources page or can be linked to directly at http://www.kdl.org/database_references/151.


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April LibraryReads Staff Picks

March 18th, 2015

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. At the Water's Edge: A NovelLibraryReadsFavoriteAt the Water’s Edge: A Novel by Sara Gruen
    “Set in Loch Ness, right in the middle of WWII, a foolish group of rich Americans arrive in search of the famous monster. Narrator Maddie must make sense of the circumstances that have brought her to this wild locale. Only then can she discover the strength she needs to make her own decisions. Enjoy a delightfully intriguing cast of characters and the engaging style of storytelling that has made Gruen so popular.”
    Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI

  3. The Royal WeThe Royal We by Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan
    “This delightful spin on the story of Prince William and Kate Middleton is the perfect beachy, weekend read for anyone who loves love stories with a healthy dose of humor. Here, Will and Kate are replaced by Nick and Bex — he’s the heir to the British throne, she’s the American who effortlessly steals his heart. Can they weather many obstacles to find their Happily Ever After? Part fairy tale, part cautionary tale, the novel is pure fun from start to finish.”
    Donna Matturri, Pickerington Public Library, Pickerington, OH

  5. A Desperate FortuneA Desperate Fortune by Susanna Kearsley
    “While transcribing an old manuscript of a young girl’s diary, Sara decodes an account of Jacobite spies. Long before, Mary Dundas gets involved in a mission which makes her confidante to the King of Scotland in exile. And along the way, both women fall for men they know little about. Kearsley is a master at seamlessly blending stories from two time periods. Readers who enjoy a little puzzle solving with their historical fiction will be rewarded.”
    Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin, TX

  7. The Dream Lover: A NovelThe Dream Lover: A Novel by Elizabeth Berg
    “George Sand leaves her estranged husband and children to embark on a life of art in bohemian Paris. A talented writer who finds monetary and critical success, Sand adopts a man’s name, often dresses as a gentleman and smokes cigars. Through her writing, politics, sexual complexities and views on feminism, Sand is always seeking love. This novel has spurred me to learn more about George Sand, a woman truly ahead of her time.”
    Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

  9. Still the OneStill the One by Jill Shalvis
    “Oh Jill Shalvis, how I love thee! Although all the books in this Animal Magnetism series have strong heroines, this one is the absolute best. And chemistry — wowza, it’s intense. The novel brings a focus on two important social issues: the lack of funding available for those who need physical therapy, and the fact that service dogs who do not pass their certification should not be thrown away. I fell in love and learned something at the same time. Instant classic.”
    Amanda Brown, Roanoke Public Libraries, Roanoke, VA

  11. Inside the O'Briens: A Novel Inside the O’Briens: A Novel by Lisa Genova
    “The O’Briens are an Irish Catholic family living in Boston. Joe, the father, is a cop, and when he is diagnosed with Huntington’s, he must somehow tell his wife and four grown children and learn to live with the disease. I couldn’t put the book down for too long. Genova made me feel as if I was part of the family. I loved the way she developed her characters with style and warmth.”
    Valerie Giambona, Secaucus Public Library, Secaucus, NJ

  13. House of Echoes: A NovelHouse of Echoes: A Novel by Brendan Duffy
    “Eager to get out of the big city, Ben and Caroline Tierney purchase a large, old house upstate hoping to renovate it into a hotel. However, their house, called The Crofts, has a dark, mysterious past, and terrifying secrets begin to threaten the family. This wonderfully eerie and atmospheric debut novel is a great recommendation for fans of Bohjalian’s The Night Strangers and McMahon’s The Winter People.”
    Sara Kennedy, Delaware County District Library, Delaware, OH

  15. The Precious One: A NovelThe Precious One: A Novel by Ian Caldwell
    “Taisy hasn’t seen her father since he dumped her family and started another one 17 years ago. An unexpected invitation to write his biography returns her to her hometown, and gives her a rare chance to knit together a broken web of relationships. Like all de los Santos’ books, The Precious One features smart, funny characters who form an unconventional family. It’s luminous and heartwarming, without an ounce of sap.”
    Heather Bistyga, Anderson County Library, Anderson, SC

  17. The Bone Tree: A NovelThe Bone Tree: A Novel by Greg Iles
    “Based on a real series of unsolved murders from the civil rights era in Louisiana, and the crusading journalist who uncovered the story, Iles’ novel shines a bright light of truth upon one of America’s darkest secrets. Iles’ compelling writing makes this complex tale of good versus evil a must-read for those who love thrillers, and those who want to learn a little bit of American history not normally taught in school.”
    Ellen Jennings, Cook Memorial Public Library, Libertyville, IL

  19. Where They Found Her: A NovelWhere They Found Her: A Novel by Kimberly McCreight
    “Molly Sanderson is covering a feature for the Ridgedale Reader that not only stirs up her recent grief over a stillborn child, but secrets that have been kept hidden for over two decades in this northern New Jersey college town. As the stories of four different women unfold, a new piece of the puzzle is revealed. Chilling and gruesome at times, this is a novel with characters who will stay with the reader long after the final page is turned.”
    Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ


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


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One eBook, No Holds!

March 17th, 2015

Big Library ReadJoin millions of readers around the world reading one eBook. As part of Overdrive’s Big Library Read program, we are pleased to offer our patrons unlimited access to the eBook Shakespeare Saved My Life: Ten Years in Solitary with the Bard by Laura Bates now through March 31. No matter how many KDL patrons are reading or listening to this book, we will have a copy available for you to download — no holds, no waitlists! In this easy-to-read autobiography, Laura details her experience teaching Shakespearean works to relate with inmates in solitary confinement.

We encourage you to join this global “library book club!” Download the book today!




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Insurgent Premieres this Week!

March 17th, 2015

Great news for all the many fans of the Divergent series: The second film, titled Insurgent (just like the book) will be in theaters this coming Friday, March 20. Check out the trailer below:

If you like action, dystopian settings and a dash of romance, this film could be just the thing for you. If you haven’t seen the first film, be sure to check it out before heading off to the theater!

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