- May 31 - King Library Opens at 1:00 PM
It’s always in the news that some specific genes are identified for the first time for specified disorders like diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s.
I feel compelled to learn more about the genes and our health. I don’t remember the scientific names in the news and I don’t have a background in biology or health sciences. I did read a book, The Language of Life by Francis S Collins. Apparently there are numerous organizations, government agencies, universities,and commercial enterprises engaged in genomic research. Then I remembered a search engine expert told us that, instead of trying to remember individual URLs, just search for the resources we desire by keywords and the various organizations’ official websites will appear. So I googled the keywords “human genome” and “Human Genome Project” respectively.
The two result lists of “human genome” and “Human Genome Project” overlap, but they all include, at the top of the lists, informative and authoritative homepage, such as Human Genome Project Information; Genome Programs of the U.S. Department of Energy; Human Genome Project - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, etc. I was also pleasantly surprised by the entries of UCSC Genome Browser and its FAQ page. For educators, there are Human Genome Project Education Resources on Dept of Energy’s Information page and the Education page with contents on genetics and genomics from NIH. National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) to begin with. In addition, the result lists provide links to related searches, e.g., human genome definition and human genome map which are important for the subject matter at hand.
Then, the millions of search results may be customized by Google Search options and tools. When my search is filtered by the option of “News” in “Past Month,” there is the entry of The $1000 Human Genome: Are We There Yet? from Scientific American, with links to hundreds of more reports on the same topic. This piece of good news - the price dropped in 10 years from $10,000 to $1,000 per sequencing - is a milestone in the proress of genomic research.
This is where I will take a break until next time when I shall customize my search to “Videos” which would be something to watch for.
Image Courtesy: National Human Genome Research Institute.
Are you new to native plant gardening? Do you want to include drought-tolerant, low-maintenance native plants in your garden, but don’t know where to start? Join representatives of the California Native Plant Society for an informative program at the following libraries. Learn about easy-to-grow native plants (trees, shrubs, perennials, and annuals) for the home garden that will not only look beautiful but also help you conserve water, energy, effort, and money.
Sunday, Feb. 5 1:30 pm Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library Room 557
Wednesday, Feb. 8 7:00 pm Cambrian Branch Library
Thursday, Feb. 16 4:00 pm Joyce Ellington Branch Library
For more information on gardening with California native plants try Native treasures: Gardening with the Plants of California and Gardening with a Wild Heart: Restoring California's Native Landscapes at Home.
Review by: Corina Cardenas
In Restrepo, Sebastian Junger documented months of what life is like for a platoon in a valley in Afghanistan. It shows what day to day life is like for many soldiers who were deployed to Afghanistan.
For a sneak peak click here
Sebastian Junger wrote “War” from the experience of filming Restrepo. “War” is a more detailed and in depth account of what feelings and emotions Junger and the soldiers faced experiencing combat and day to day life in the valley.
“War” was very informative on a soldier’s life and helps a civilian understand what a soldier experiences in war and combat.
For other Sebastian Junger titles available at your local branch click here
Review by: Corina Cardenas
A romantic “must see” comedy set in the streets of Paris. Midnight in Paris features a young writer who travels to Paris with his fiancée and family and embarks on a life changing experience. While experiencing writers block the young writer is faced with a glimpse of what life could be like in a different time.
The movie leaves you questioning your own views on what a better life could be.
This movie is perfect for a date night, girl’s night or even a movie night with the family. It has a great story line and is heartfelt.
For a sneak peak click here
If you enjoy this film check out the other Woody Allen titles that are available at your local branch by clicking here.
For February 2012, our new Online Book Club is discussing The Muslim Next Door: The Qur'an, the Media, and that Veil Thing, by Sumbul Ali-Karamali. This is one of the books chosen for the community reading program, Silicon Valley Reads, which this year focuses on the theme "Muslim and American."
Each week, we'll put forth a different question to prompt reflection on the book and its ideas. We hope you will participate in the discussion by leaving comments below!
For Week 1, we'd like to ask:
What information, anecdote, or argument in The Muslim Next Door surprised or left a deep impression on you?
Before reading this book, I had some exposure to the very basics of Islam from overview-history courses in college and Muslims I've known; things like the five pillars, prayers, fasting, dietary restrictions, how Islam fit into the Judeo-Christian tradition, Muhammad's life, and the Sunni/Shi'a split.
I appreciated the chance to learn much more from this book. As basic as this may sound, I don't recall ever reading translated portions of the Qur'an before - and found it wasn't what I expected. Several things surprised me about the Qur'an:
There's much more I could bring up, but what did you think? What information, anecdote, or argument in The Muslim Next Door surprised or left a deep impression on you? Let us know!
You are Invited:
A Homeless Forum
(In Memory of Anne Bergo)
Tuesday, March 6th, 4-6 p.m. King Library, 2nd Floor, Suites A&B
(Sponsored by The San José Public Library, Social Workers in the Library, San José State University School of Social Work & The National Association of Social Workers - CA Chapter, in celebration of National Social Work Month.)
Homelessness: Statistics, Resources & Information
Statistics on Homelessness in San José:
Homeless population in San José: 8,941 persons (approximately 1% of the city’s population )
Population of the City of San José: 948,244 people (the tenth largest city in the nation)
Financial instability and housing costs
Cost of Living in San José: Among the highest in California (and the nation )
(2012 rates for a one-bedroom apartment in Santa Clara County: $1,350. Fair market rent for a two-bedroom apartment: $1,623 and $2,334 for a three-bedroom apartment. A person working full-time at the California minimum wage earning $8.00 per hour ($1,280 per month) could not afford a two-bedroom market-rate apartment in San José on their own.
Unemployment, underemployment or loss of a job, flight from domestic violence, or illness
Individuals, families, and children
Included: those with drug and alcohol dependencies, the disabled, and the mentally ill (but not all people experiencing homelessness live with these conditions)
Those who hold jobs, and those who are unemployed ( 16% work at least part-time)
25% are under age 18
41% are families
City of San Jose, Department of Housing
Foreclosure Help Center:
Homeless Resource Guide (City of San José/ Housing Department):
(Includes resources for Domestic violence, Employment, Food, Rental assistance, Shelter, Veterans.)
Housing – Santa Clara County
Good information on finding Senior Housing
Section 8 Housing Application
Shelter Bed Hotline – 24 hours
Information on shelters throughout the San Francisco Bay Area
1-800-7Shelter, or (1-800-774-3583)
2-1-1 (phone number) or http://www.211.org/
Free, 24/7, 140 languages available (call-in or online information)
(Help with food, housing, employment, health care, counseling and more)
Finding Help Throughout the County:
www.helpscc.org (Region, City and Category search)
(Includes Santa Clara and Santa Cruz countywide resources for: Children and Families, Food, Health, Housing, Income and Rental Assistance and Seniors)
Homeless Resource Guide(City of San José/ Housing Department):
(Includes resources for Domestic violence, Employment, Food, Rental assistance, Shelter, Veterans.)
Social Workers in the Library
Free, 20 minute information and referral/advice sessions at both King
(bi-monthly) and Bibliotecca Branch Library (monthly)
Lawyers in the Library
Free 20-minute legal consultation with an attorney provided by the pro Bono Project of Silicon Valley
http://www.sjpl.org/event/lawyers-library (other options for legal assistance included on web site)
Dentistry (Compiled by Stanford Pacific Free Clinic)
Stanford Pacific Free Clinic
1835 Cunningham Ave., San Jose, CA 95122
(Health assessments, referrals for low cost medications, laboratory
testing & vaccines)
Valley Homeless Healthcare Clinic (stationary and mobile clinics throughout San José, dentistry included)
Further Information on Homelessness and Santa Clara County :
City of San José ‘s Homeless Strategy
Santa Clara County’s 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness
Santa Clara County Homeless Census and Survey
Homeless for the Holidays in the Santa Clara Valley, Part I of a Series on the Homeless (Santa Clara Weekly)
Materials on Homelessness Available at the San José Public Library and SJSU:
General - Fiction, Nonfiction on Homelessness:
Children's Collection - On Homelessness:
Mont Ventoux, l’Alpe d’Huez, Col d’Aubisque, Col d'Izoard, Col du Tourmalet are just a few of the most infamous Tour de France climbs. The Tour de France favorites rise to the occasion hammering the uphills, measuring each other’s fitness and occasionally attempting to breakaway for a stage win. While the overall general classification Tour winner is most often determined in the alpine landscape, there are additional competitions within the Tour de France.
The San Jose Public Library has a collection of Tour de France media including books and DVDs. Inside the Tour de France : The Pictures, the Legends, and the Untold Stories of the World's Most Beloved Bicycle Race is a compendium of stories and photographs of the legends of the Tour de France. It was published in 2006 and includes Lance Armstrong’s historic seventh win.
The Official Tour de France Centennial, 1903-2003 celebrates 100 years of the world’s most famous bike race. It contains photographs and anecdotes from the Tour de France archives and was produced in connection with L’Equipe, France’s daily sports newspaper and originator of the Tour.
Another title in the Library’s collection is Tour de France/Tour de Force: A Visual History of the World’s Greatest Bicycle Race. This book features hundreds of photographs and tells the tale of the Tour dating back to its beginnings. There are illustrations of the evolution of the Tour de France bicycle, chapters on race strategies, race results dating back to 1903 and a section on the Tour’s unfortunate link to the use of performance enhancing drugs.
Check out more Tour de France titles at the San Jose Public Library.
San Jose Mercury News (SJMN) aka Mercury News is the most popular newspaper in the city of San Jose, California. Although the newspaper had been through many developments and changes, the Mercury News is still the most popular daily publication in the City. The newspaper covers many popular sections including local, national, international news, commentary and editorials. The newspaper has many other popular sections including; business, sports, and unique sections. In addition of reading the daily Mercury News many users enjoy researching and locating family and local history information. The daily newspaper is available everyday at all SJPL branches. Moreover, San Jose Public Library provides many formats of the SJMN. In particular, at the Dr Martin Luther King Jr. library, there are the microfilm holdings for the SJMN since1861, and users can view, print, or save in their own USB flash drives using the microfilm machines
Battle of the Bands 2012
Submit your online entries by February 12, 2012
Don't expect a light-hearted romp of a fairy tale in A Tale Dark & Grimm (AR 6.0, Level 4.6) by Adam Gidwitz. This book, now in paperback, is grisly and horrific. It is specifically geared for 'tweens and teenagers.
Hansel and Gretel are seemingly clue-less in the original fairy tale, as they encounter the witch in the woods. In this tale, the two characters are fully-developed and attain preternatural maturity because of all of the horror they experience due to the mistakes of their parents.
Fairy tales are currently experiencing a resurgence in popularity at the movies and on television. However, the current incarnations of traditional fairy tales seem to taking a darker path than the Disneyfied versions of the past. Adam Gidwitz's novel can best be described as kiddie horror (is there such a genre?) He explains in his biography that he has personally experienced the horrors he has written about. Personally, I hope he is kidding! Read it, to find out why!
Have you ever asked yourself the question “how can I start learning a new language?” Japanese, Italian, French, Chinese, Persian, Spanish, and Vietnamese are some of the languages San Jose Public Library has made possible for all SJPL library users to have access to with the “Learn a Language” collection, which they can enjoy every day. It is amazing what you’ll discover with the many excellent resources at SJPL regarding learning and enjoying a new language. Some of the resources are printed materials and some are combined with media such as CDs or DVDs, making learning a language more exciting. All the “Learn a Language” materials can be checked out at any SJPL branch with your SJPL Library card by consulting library staff or by a simple search in the SJPL Library catalog, which are the most common methods for locating your favorite language information. Moreover, users can enjoy learning new languages by exploring the SJPL Language Learning Center and online Mango database which is an electronic digital format to access. You’ll need your SJPL library card to have access to the Mango database. Enjoy learning your favorite language
If you told me I would someday love John Steinbeck novels when I was in high school, I would have scoffed. However, to be trite, like a fine bottle of wine, Steinbeck's works only get better as you grow older. Maybe it's that I was uninspired by the bleakness of The Grapes of Wrath, or that I was just too young to appreciate the themes being brought up in the text, but I knew back then I would rather be playing video games. I recently read two of Steinbeck's shorter works, which were of a decidedly more optimistic nature. Cannery Row and Tortilla Flat are two very accessible and quick reads (about 200 pages or under) that I recommend to readers who enjoy "Slice of Life" storytelling. In both of these novels, Steinbeck elaborates on the day to day activities of working class individuals in and around the Monterey Peninsula, a place he was quite familiar with himself.
These types of stories granted, are not for everyone. There is no central conflict that the characters focus on and ultimately resolve in the conclusion. It's more about enjoying the moment, and maybe seeing shades of yourself and your friends and family, in these characters that Steinbeck has created, as they go about their oftentimes hilarious daily antics. Throughout these novels, Steinbeck exposes the social impulses and pecularities that we oftentimes don't stop to think about, (and that we are all guilty of) and makes them something to chuckle about. For instance, Tortilla Flat explores the social elitism of a character that is gifted a vacuum cleaner: "Her manner became dignified and gracious, and she held her head high as befitted one with a sweeping machine." If that line sounded absurd and ridiculous in the best way, then these novels will be your best friends.
How do you look up a word if you don’t know how it’s spelled? That used to be a pesky question, but no more now with the advent of spell-checker and auto-suggestions at search boxes with search engines. As a matter of fact, Google Search provides a special operator “Define:” to perform what dictionaries or thesauri can do, and some more. If you want to see a list of definitions from various online sources, you may input “define:” followed by a word or phrase. The results in a list such generated are generally relevant, comprehensive, and up to date.
With the ease of using the “Define:” feature, not only is the wealth of etymology and usage of certain words accessible to us, but also open to us are the doors to other relevant resources. For example, I have demonstrated "Define:" to a few library users in diciphering words (knowing not necessarily the spellings) such as “a capella”; dearth; polymath; and recidivism. The few users were all pleased with the search technique as well as the quality of the results.
For myself this time, I googled “Define:Virtual” and got a list of about 4,570,000,000 results. Displayed at the top of the page are Pronunciation (phonetics & audio,) Definitions, Synonyms, and links to More info »Wikipedia - Dictionary.com - Answers.com - Merriam-Webster, followed by relevant web resources, such as Second Life, Wikipedia article, etc.
To hone in on a few projects of interest to me, I experimented with the search results Options and Tools (e. g., Images, News, Blogs, Related Searches, and Time) shown on the left-hand navigation panel. With the aid of these filters, I should be able to explore further and discover plenty of expert resources beyond what I realized so far.
For the time being, I am satisfied with the information provided by the sites ranked high on this list of results. I would share with you a particular passage from the “Usage Note” on the above mentioned Answers.com: “The adjectives virtual and digital and the prefixes e- and cyber- are all used in various ways to denote things, activities, and organizations that are realized or carried out chiefly in an electronic medium. There is considerable overlap in the use of these items: people may speak either of virtual communities or of cybercommunities and of e-cash or cybercash.”
For levitation, please look on the same page for a cartoon, “Virtual Ice Fishing.” Funny!
Image Courtesy: U. S. Department of Energy.
THEY HAVE MORE CARDHOLDERS THAN VISA, MORE CUSTOMERS THAN AMAZON
AND MORE OUTLETS THAN McDONALDS . . .
Meet America's Librarians
You might not have given much thought to the librarian behind the desk at your local branch — much less her often caricatured depiction in Hollywood — but being a dedicated library user (as I'm sure you are!) you might want to find out a little more.
This quirky but informative documentary about librarians and their portrayal in the movies — a and their important role in defending our civil rights will definitely fit the bill.
Listen to what Vartan Gregorian, President of the Carnegie Corporation of New York has to say about this intriguing film:
"The Hollywood Librarian is an illuminating portrait of librarians as they have been portrayed in the movies—often bespectacled, occasionally glamorous, sometimes too brainy for their own good—juxtaposed with the real-life librarians, both men and women, who are the gatekeepers of knowledge in an increasingly digital and globalizing world. A touching, amusing, insightful and entirely delightful film, The Hollywood Librarian also manages to make critical points about how censorship still intrudes on our lives and how the freedom to read remains a right we must all defend."
And by clicking on "Request" you can have this documentary DVD transferred to your neighborhood SJPL library!
Making mathematics with needlework : ten papers and ten projects / edited by Sarah-Marie Belcastro, Carolyn Yackel
I’m not a mathematician, but if, like me, you are proficient enough to work out your own designs in knitting, crocheting and other forms of craft, I suspect you may be intuitively working with advanced mathematics. This novel and practical approach to mathematics contains 10 needlework craft projects (knitting, crochet, embroidery, and quilting) which make interesting reading and fascinating starting points for further exploration. The editors' intention is that these projects should be of interest to mathematicians who don't know anything about crafting and to crafters who don't know anything about mathematics. If mathematics isn't your thing, you'll find the photographs of these projects beautiful and inspiring. Here are some examples:
Quilted mobius band -- Picking up stitches and Diophantine equaions -- The Sierpinski variations: self-similar crochet -- Ony two knit stitches can create a torus -- Symmetry patterns in cross-stitch -- Socks with Algebraic structure -- Fortunatus's purse -- (K)not cables, braids -- The graph theory of blackwork embroidery -- Stop those (hypperbolic) pants!.
On Guy Fawkes Night, some teenagers are surprised to find that their London housing project is under attack from aliens. The invaders, fast-moving creatures with lots of teeth, could have chosen an easier target; the residents decide to stand their ground, using anything that even vaguely works as a weapon. A British sci-fi film that doesn't take itself too seriously, Attack the Block has a 90 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
For more British films worth watching, click here.
Noon, Wednesday, Feb. 22
King Library, Children's Room
Bring your camera and take a photo with a star from
Disney Pixars Toy Story 3.
Don't forget you can still donate a new children's book to the Partners in Reading Family Literacy Program's Book Drive "Together We Read." Book drive ends Friday, Feb. 25.
Donate a new book at your local branch library and receive one FREE ticket to Disney on Ice presents Disney/Pixar's Toy Story 3. One ticket per family, while supplies last.
Only 1 out of every 300 children from low-income families own a book. Help local families start their own home library and create the joy of reading as a family. Reading helps expand imagination, builds knowledge, it's cool, fun and exciting. Most importantly, reading takes you To Infinity ... and Beyond!
Disney on Ice representative will also present a special Make your own Mr. or Mrs. Potato Head! Storytime/Craft program at three locations.
Thank you for supporting Partners in Reading's Book Drive!
Wednesday Family Story Time. We are happy to announce the return of Wednesday night Family Story Time in February. Family Story Time is a great way for parents and children to enjoy stories, music, rhymes and activities together. Join us any Wednesday night at 6:30 starting February 1.
eReaders. Did you get a Nook, or a Kindle, or another electronic reading device for Christmas? Or did you already have one that you haven’t quite figured out how to use yet? Why not bring it in this Saturday, January 28, to our ereader “petting zoo.” Library staff will be on hand to show you how to access the library’s ever growing selection of ebooks using whichever ereader you own.
Job Seekers. Adults in the area who are job hunting may be interested to know that we have a Job Seekers Support Group that meets once a month in the library. Everyone is welcome to attend and share job search tips and strategies. The group meets the third Wednesday of each month in the Community Room, 9:45-11:00 am. Please note that the library is closed at program time so please plan to enter the building from the Community Room door adjacent to the parking lot.
A Compliment. We are always happy to hear kind words about our services and our building. Most recently a customer complimented us on our Children’s Room. She said it was the best one she had ever seen. She particularly like all the face out displays on the wall. If you haven’t noticed this before, please come in and check it out. We hope you’ll like it too.
On Thursday, January 19, 2012, the Tully Community Branch Library held a very special program to celebrate Lunar New Year 2012, the Year of the Dragon. This fun family event included crafts, bingo, free calligraphy name writing, free book giveaway, special book sale, traditional treats and a raffle.
A normally jaded political consultant becomes passionately convinced that his latest client should be the next president. The White House seems well within reach until a woman appears with information that could destroy everything he's worked for. The Oscar-nominated Ides of March stars George Clooney and Ryan Gosling; the film has a 67 percent rating at Metacritic.
For more independent films worth watching, click here.
Mad Science is back by popular demand! Last time we learned about Fire and Ice; this time it's Up, Up & Away!
Up, Up & Away takes the principles of air pressure to a new high! Some of the things the children can observe include: the creation of a hot air balloon, giant smoke rings generated by a vortex generator and a hovercraft in action. WOW! This fun, exciting and educational program will be at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library on Saturday, January 28 at 3:00PM. Don't miss it!
The library has many books for children who are interested in all kinds of flying machines, click here to see the many books you can borrow. Plus if you're interested in the first hot-air balloon flight which happened in 1783 check out this fun book: Hot Air, The (Mostly) True Story of the First Hot-Air Balloon Ride by Marjorie Price as told from the point of view of the duck, sheep and rooster who were the first passengers!
An orphaned young woman leaves Odessa , solicited as a mail –order bride, for America and a better life . Her destination is a sod house on the South Dakota prairie, her husband, a Jewish Orthodox farmer with two teenage sons. A cold winter and hard work await her, but, by the end of the year, there is hope and a new beginning. A different “little house on the prairie” story inspired by a little-known Jewish homesteading movement in the 1880s on the American west.
Travel writer and memoirist Bill Bryson starts at home – his house, a Victorian rectory in Norfolk England built in 1851, the year of the Crystal Palace Exhibition. As he explores each room, Bryson expounds on the social history of household objects with digressions to significant events and people associated with them. A pleasant ramble, though I would not always recommend this book as a meal time companion. Here’s what Bryson has to say::
If you like this, you might also want to read
A counterfeiter is transferred from an Austrian jail to a German concentration camp during the Second World War. He is eventually ordered to produce vast quantities of fake American currency to undermine the Allied economies and threatened with grim consequences if he fails. The Oscar-winning film The Counterfeiters is based on a true story and has a 78 percent rating at Metacritic.
For many more German DVD recommendations, click here.
Are you searching for a job? Here are some helpful web pages.
Resources for Job Seekers from the sjpl.org website
Teen College and Job Resources from the sjpl.org website
Work2Future a helpful local organization
Indeed a search tool
Interviewing from monster.com
Research and Homework from the sjpl.org website
Here are two fun books on rescue and fire: Chief Rhino to the Rescue and Fire Trucks and the Rescue Vehicles. If you have a boy, they are bound to love these two titles. Chief Rhino to the Rescue is by Sam Lloyd the author of Mr Pusskins: A Love Story, Mr Pusskins and Little Whiskers: Another Love Story, and What Color is Your Underwear? all of which are sure to please your little ones. Her drawings are dramatic, and her stories are exaggerated in the way a small child sees the world: the world is so cold and wet when a kitty wanders off on his own. In the Chief Rhino to the Rescue, the Rhino is devasted to learn that his fire is not really one. The humor is so evident to the adult, and not really to the child. A great read, I recommend this to the little ones.
Fire Trucks and the Rescue Vehicles, the second title, is a non-fiction title by Jean Coppendale. This book has easy-to-understand text and large, clear pictures to illustrate the point. The book looks at all the various vehicles that may be brought on scene to put out a fire or to rescue people. There are suggested activities at the back and a glossary for children to use. This is simply a great book to explain to little ones about the various vehicles at an emergency site.
“You can’t take back the things that you have said.”
“Think before you speak.”
“You said it, now you have to live with it.”
Sound familiar? You may recall either parents or teachers sharing these well known bits of advice with you. These phrases certainly made an impression on me because they often surface in the back of my mind as I make my way through life. I respect the power of words, thoughts and images and now I wonder about all the words, thoughts and images that are saturating social networks on the Internet. Every word, every image has an impact, and once posted on a social networking site they cannot be “taken back.” Consider the personal data that millions of people are posting on Facebook, Myspace, Twitter and other social networks. Are all the posts and photos really private ?
Lori Andrews, a law professor and leading expert on social networks and privacy, explores the potential perils of social networking in her latest book I Know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did : Social Networks and the Death of Privacy. Andrews takes an in depth look at how what we post and share on social networking sites can be tracked and compiled without our knowledge. She cites cases where information mined from social networking sites has been used by employers, schools, lawyers and police to learn more about an individual’s habits, character and beliefs, often with devastating outcomes. Andrews believes that it may be time to consider the real need for a Social Network Constitution to protect the property, privacy, life and liberty of social network users. If social networking is an integral part of your life and you value your privacy, you might want to read I Know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did before you compose your next online post or tweet.
France in 1941 is a defeated, demoralized country under German occupation. The future looks bleak until a small group of men and women begin to organize and fight back. Based on a true story, Army of Crime stars Virginie Ledoyen and has a 90 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
For many more French DVD recommendations, click here.
Welcome to Silicon Valley Reads 2012!
2012 is the 10th anniversary of Silicon Valley Reads and we are celebrating with an outstanding selection of books and events focused on the theme "Muslim and American: Two Perspectives". We invite everyone in Santa Clara County to read one or more of the featured books, to attend the free events we have scheduled, and to engage with others in discussion and share perspectives on this relevant theme.
2012 Companion Books for Children
It's OK To Be Different (pre-K) by Todd Parr
One Green Apple (Gr K-2) by Eve Bunting
My Name Is Bilal (Gr 2-6) by Asma Mobin-Uddin
Skunk Girl (Gr 7 and up) by Sheba Karim
Events will be held at many of our San Jose Public Library locations.
See our calendar for other Silicon Valley Reads events at San Jose Public Libraries. Stop by any of our locations to pick up the Silicon Valley Reads brochure and check out other events happening throughout Silicon Valley.
Also, our new Online Book Club will be discussing the Silicon Valley Reads selections during February and March.
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Do you like magic? You are cordially invited to come to the Edenvale Branch Library Community Room on Monday, January 23, 2012 at 4:00 PM to see a fun magic show with Grandpa Joe. This show for children and families is sponsored by the Friends of the Edenvale Branch Library, of which Grandpa Joe is a member.
"Enough," said Glaedr.
Glaedr seemed possessed of an urge to do something other than sink ever deeper into the all-enveloping morass of his private torments.
"Enough," Glaedr repeated, sounding both weary and exasperated. "Do you wish to attract unwanted attention?"
"Eragon, you should not spend so much time sparring. It is distracting you from more important matters. The sword in Galbatorix's hand is not what you need fear the most, nor the sword in his mouth, but rather the sword in his mind."
"Anyone with the time and inclination can acquire technical proficiency. To achieve greatness, though, that requires artistry."
"By seeing all and discounting nothing, you may adapt without hesitation to any change. The warrior who can adapt the easiest to the unexpected is the warrior who will live the longest.
The theme of being able to adjust strategies based upon meditated evaluation is a major theme in this, the final volume of Christopher Paolini's Eragon cycle. The cycle comes to an end in Inheritance. In this final volume, Eragon finally meets his nemesis, Galbatorix. Eragon's growth as a character will determine if he will be able to follow Glaedr's advice.
This novel starts with a synopsis of all that has transpired in previous novels. Don't relax, though! The beginning chapter, "Into the Breach," starts off running in the midst of a battle. We see familiar faces, Saphira, Arya, Roran, Katrina, Angela, Nasuada, Orrin, Orik, Nar Garzhvog, Elva, Murtagh, etc. and familiar towns that must be breached by the Varden. Inheritance is a hefty volume and encompasses troubling births, bloody battles, encounters with the priests of Helgrind, kidnappings, werecats, the Rock of Kuthian, and name-finding. Always in the shadows, though, is the grim shadow of the mad king, Galbatorix.
The showdown with Galbatorix itself made me initially cringe because I saw images of the end of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. However, I am pleased that my initial assumption proved to be incorrect!
Paolini delivers a deliberate and exciting conclusion to his epic saga. He promises us, though, that he intends on visiting the lands of Alagaesia in the future. I look forward to further adventures in this sprawling landscape!
Well, the forecasters tell us we'll get some rain soon. I'm looking for a good book so I can curl up and read while I enjoy the sound of the rain outside. If you're like me, you'll head over to the Friends of Willow Glen Library book sale this Saturday, January 21. It runs from 10 am until 4 pm. The Friends tell me their stock of book purses is low right now, so I'll want to hit the sale early for the best selection. I love browsing through tables full of books to find a fun read at a great price. I also can't resist looking over the specials--older books and unique finds. Last time, I picked up a cookbook, a gardening reference, and some wonderful old Dana Girls mysteries by Carolyn Keene. This pseudonym was also used to write the Nancy Drew series, and although that series has been updated for modern readers, my goddaughter and I still like the older books. I wonder what I'll find this Saturday? I can't wait to see!
The children of Hailsham School are special; without friends or family, they're given an excellent education but kept isolated from the rest of society. They begin to realize as they reach adulthood that they've been raised for a very sinister purpose. Based on the science fiction novel by Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go stars Keira Knightley and has a 70 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
For more British film recommendations, click here.
At this time of year, nothing warms me up like a nice hot bowl of soup or stew. I love to cook, so even though it would be very easy to just go to a store and choose from the varieties they offer, I like to make a big batch of soup or stew and have it to eat with a sandwich for lunch or for an appetizer at dinner for several days. Since I also have high blood pressure, I am also conscious of the amount of fat and salt that can be in those packaged soups and stews and can adust the amounts of those ingredients. Interested in making a big pot of comfort food to warm you up on a cold winter night? Come check out our selections of cookbooks. The variety of soup and stew recipies will astound you--from delicious creamy soups to hearty, "meaty" stews. You may even find a new favorite recipie to keep your tummy warm and full on a cold, damp winter night.
Isabelle has an entry-level job at a multinational corporation and a boss who likes to take credit for other people's work. When this happens once too often, and when Isabelle is humiliated in the process, she devises an elaborate plan to get even. Love Crime stars Kristen Scott Thomas and Ludivine Sagnier; the film has a 63 percent rating at Metacritic.
For many more French DVD recommendations, click here.
Can you guess what these objects have in common? Give up? Well they are all characters in three brand new concept books you can find at the San Jose Public Library. Most children’s librarians will agree that a concept book is “a book intended for young children that focuses on colors, shapes, sizes, number and counting, and the alphabet.” The following are new ones that I enjoyed and I think children will too:
Perfect Square by Michael Hall: It starts with a “perfect square that has four matching corners and four equal sides and is perfectly happy.” As the week progresses our perfect square changes into things that are different but make him just as happy. Beautiful colors, beautiful shapes, a perfect book. Enjoy!
Apple Pie ABC by Alison Murray: A young girl bakes an apple pie and her pup wakes up to the delicious smell. He definitely wants a taste! He is Eager for it, he Jumps for it, he Ogles it, he Pines for it and so on through the alphabet. Will pup ever get a taste of that apple pie? Check out Apple Pie ABC to find out and learn the alphabet too!
Pete the Cat, I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin: Meet Pete the Cat who is wearing white shoes that he just loves so much that he sings about them. But do they stay white, of course not. Follow Pete throughout his day as his shoes turn so many colors. Here’s a great clip of the author, Eric Litwin and illustrator James Dean performing their book!
Eat This Not That!quickly shows you how to make easy food swaps from chain restaurant menus that can save you hundreds of calories , saturated fat and sodium.
Have you ever discovered interesting rocks on the beach, in the woods, or on a sidewalk? Over the years, author/illustrator Leslie McGuirk has collected dozens of rocks shaped like letters of the alphabet, as well as rocks shaped like various items. If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet has beautiful photographs of the rocks she has collected. To learn more about the author/illustrator, please visit her web site. You can also see a cute video with excerpts of the book here.
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, written by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault and illustrated by Lois Ehlert is another fun alphabet book. All of the lower case alphabet letters decide to climb a coconut tree on a full moon. Will the tree hold all of them? Read this fun rhyming story and find out!
Some other delightful alphabet books include:
Alphabeep: A Zipping, Zooming ABC
Written by Debora Pearson and illustrated by Edward Miller
Alphabet Under Construction
Written and illustated by Denise Fleming
Written by June Sobel and illustrated by Melissa Iwai
Written by Stella Blackstone and illustrated by Caroline Mockford
Firefighters A to Z
Written and illustated by Chris L. Demarest
Jeepers Creepers: A Monstrous ABC
Written by Laura Leuck and illustrated by David Parkins
Rainbow Fish A,B,C
Written and illustated by Marcus Pfister
The Sleepy Little Alphabet: A Bedtime Story from Alphabet Town
Written by Judy Sierra and illustrated by Melissa Sweet
So Many Bunnies: A Bedtime ABC and Counting Book
Written by Rick Walton and illustrated by Paige Miglio
The Turn-Around, Upside-Down Alphabet Book
Written and illustated by Lisa Campbell Ernst
The City of San José is beginning a nationwide search for applicants for its next Library Director and we are hoping you will take a few minutes to complete a brief survey on what traits you think the next Library Director should possess. All of the comments will be provided to City Manager Debra Figone for her consideration in making this important decision for our community. We value your input!
Are you always looking for construction books for your little one? Well, here are some new titles that we have at San Jose Public Library that is sure to please that little construction enthusiast. Barney Backhoe's Big Idea is a flap book by Cathy West in which human characterics are given to various John Deere construction equipment. Road Work Ahead by Anastasia Suen is a cute story where a child travels across town to grandma's house to eat her famous oatmeal cookies. Big Wheels by Anne Rockwell, is an old classic, that explains all the various construction equipment. A non-fiction title, the book is shelved in the non-fiction area under 625.225 Rockwell. Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Rinker is a New York Times Bestseller for 2011; it describes in rhyme the end of a long day on a construction site. All the engines rest and go to sleep.
Review written by volunteer Robert D.
The final book in Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan Trilogy is out! Goliath picks up where the last book, Behemoth, left off. Deryn and Alek have left Constantinople in the Leviathan, a British airship made from a genetically engineered whale with a weaponized ecosystem at the crew's command. They begin making their way towards Russia, which is England's ally and one of the great Darwenist powers of Europe in this this alternate World War I setting. In Russia, they meet a certain Clanker (technology-user) scientist who claims to have a weapon that will end all wars.
For those who have read the first two books, picking this one up is a foregone conclusion. For those who haven't yet checked out the now complete Leviathan Trilogy, do so! Westerfeld has done a great job in adapting the events of World War I for this alternate universe. For people interested in Steampunk, Dieselpunk, and Biopunk this is a great introductory novel!
Free reusable bags are available from the City of San José while supplies last. Limit, one per household. Check the Bag Outreach Schedule for locations and times. City representatives will be available to answer your questions about the ordinance.
Meet Chiko! This nine-year-old is a dog with a job--he's a Furry Friends therapy dog who visits Willow Glen Branch Library, and other places, spreading joy and good will. What do therapy dogs do at the library? They act as a friendly audience to young readers. With a dog's non-critical ear, a beginning reader is more likely to enjoy the learning experience. Chiko is very well-behaved, a requirement for a therapy dog. Plus, this mixed breed is big enough to endure hugs from tots, and he loves kids. Chiko was found in an animal shelter and adopted by Debra, a second-grade teacher who frequently brings him to her classroom. He's been a therapy dog for three years. Children and families are invited to visit WG on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month to read to Chiko and other Furry Friends. Or look for other reading to dogs programs in your area.
Are you looking for great books to get your Preschool to First Grader interested in reading? Rhyming and word families never seemed so fun! Check out the flip-a-word series by the Japanese illustrator, Yukiko Kido, and written by Harriet Ziefert.
Each book highlights three different word families. Stop pop includes the –op, -un, and -an families. Pig Wig looks at words containing the letter combinations -ig, -ug, and -at, while Snake Cake features -ake, -oat, and -ant. Kids will have fun turning the pages with cut-outs representing each word family. Your children will definitely be drawn to the bright, bold illustrations in this series. Check out Snow Bow (-eat, -ate, and -ow), Quack shack (-ack, -ick, and -ock) and Wet Pet (-et, -ed and -am).
Lunar New Year, popularly known as Chinese New Year is also celebrated by Vietnamese (Tet Festival), Bhutanese and in countries and territories with significant Chinese populations, such as Mainland China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand. Chinese New Year is considered a major holiday for many Asian cultures and has had influence on the lunar new year celebrations of its geographic neighbors.
The first day of the 2012 Lunar New Year is on January 23, 2012. This day is a new moon day, and is the first day of the first lunar month in the Lunar Calendar system.
Read more about Chinese New Year history and interesting facts from the books that you can check out from San José Public Library. You do need to have a current library card with valid pin number. If you haven't got one, make sure to apply for one.
Tully Library celebrates this cultural event with the community every year. To greet the Year of Dragon, our Annual Lunar New Year Celebration took place on Thursday January 19 at 4 PM. Children and families enjoyed various crafts (Calendar and Dragon Puppets Making), Bingo, Raffle, and Free Book, Reusable Bag, and Calligraphy Writing Giveaway.
Anya has immigrated to the United States and has worked hard to assimilate into the American culture. She has eliminated her Russian accent and adopted American mannerisms.
Everything changes on the day she falls into a hole and meets a ghost. This "benign" ghost seems to be a great supporter and advisor. Anya's ghost looks nerdy and unassuming. However, this new friend finds ways to help Anya out of schoolwork and skipping out on classes. Anya's ghost even starts to help Anya find a way to get together with her huge crush, who never seems to notice her. With the ghost's help, however, Anya soon gets his attention!
Vera Brosgol is an illustrator for Laika, Inc. She works on storyboards for feature animation. Neil Gaiman has called Anya's Ghost (find on Link+) "a masterpiece." This is a novel for those who love graphic novels and young adult literature.
The West Valley Book Club's February selection is The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver. Originally published in 1988, this was Kingsolver's debut novel, and she has since received numerous literary awards and acclaim, most notably for her subsequent fiction and non-fiction works such as The Poisonwood Bible and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.
"Clear-eyed and spirited, Taylor Greer grew up poor in rural Kentucky with the goals of avoiding pregnancy and getting away. But when she heads west with high hopes and a barely functional car, she meets the human condition head-on. By the time Taylor arrives in Tucson, Arizona, she has acquired a completely unexpected child, a three-year-old American Indian girl named Turtle, and must somehow come to terms with both motherhood and the necessity for putting down roots. Hers is a story about love and friendship, abandonment and belonging, and the discovery of surprising resources in apparently empty places." (Amazon.com)
The West Valley Book Club meets on Wednesday, February 8 at 6:30pm. Join us for spirited literary discussion and to help choose next month's selection.
This is one of those books which makes you feel as if you personally know the characters and don’t want to let them go. Fortunately there are several books following it, which will keep the reader happy for a long while.
The setting is in the Northern Ireland village of Ballybucklebo in early 1960’s. Doctor Fingal Flahertie O’Reily is the village doctor, and the young and newly graduated Dr. Laverty joins him as his assistant. Much to Laverty’s surprise, things are handled a lot differently here than what he has learned at school. Dr O’Reily is a great friend and teacher who knows every patient’s name and history (personal and medical) and Kinky is a fine housekeeper and cook. Then there are those wonderful and “unusual” inhabitants of the village which one comes to know and love. These books are simple, wise and funny, just perfect for long winter nights.
If you're anything like me, the cover image of a children's book is what draws you in. As I was searching for new books to read to my son, I came across the book "You will be my friend!" by Peter Brown.
It's a story about Lucy, a young bear, who tries to make friends with several different forest creatures with sometimes disasterous results. While definitely a children's book, I got a good chuckle out of the silly situations Lucy gets herself into. The illustrations are great too!
We own a few other titles by Peter Brown, check them out here.
While San Jose Public Library doesn't own this one, "Children make terrible pets" is another favorite of mine by Peter Brown. Never fear! If you want to give it a read, you can always request a copy through our Link+ system!
Reference USA our powerful online business directory provider is offering free online training for our customers. This is a great training opportunity for new Reference USA users and existing users to learn something new. Reference USA is a great tool for entrepreneurs, small business owners, those in sales and marketing, and job seekers.
There are 3 trainings to choose from:
Fridays (Jan. 13- Mar. 30) 9 am register
All trainings require an Internet connection, phone line, and are 1 hour in duration. You will have an opportunity to ask questions during these trainings.
It's a Saturday and your kids are bored or you're wondering what would be a great way to spend some quality time with your family. Well, come down to the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library in downtown San Jose and check out this amazing building! There are 8 floors to wander through, interesting artworks just waiting to be discovered and of course a wonderful Children's Room to visit. Time your visit so that you can enjoy these wonderful programs that we will be having in the Children's Room at 3:00PM.
So mark these dates on your calendar and make your Saturdays, Super Saturdays at the King Library. Remember all the programs are FREE!
Macario falls hopelessly in love with a woman he regularly sees in a window across from his office. He works hard to earn enough to marry her and eventually gains the consent of her parents, but his new fiancee turns out to be full of surprises. A film by veteran Portuguese director Manoel de Oliveira, Eccentricities of a Blonde-Haired Girl has a 79 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
When I read the description on the cover of The Reluctant Communist, I just had to find out about such a bizarre story. In 1965, an American soldier, cold, tired, and afraid of being sent to fight in Vietnam, left his post in South Korea and defected to the Communist north. He expected to be sent back to the U.S. and spend some time in jail. Instead, he was held in North Korea for almost 40 years. Would he be tortured as a hated Capitalist? Brainwashed into the next Manchurian Candidate? Held up as a hero for joining the Communist struggle? Well, the answer is a little of everything, as Jenkins describes a country that was something between a prison and a Kafka novel, where his captors never seemed to know what to do with him and changed their minds frequently and randomly. But Jenkins does find the last thing you'd expect for a political prisoner to find: true love. One doesn’t know if Jenkins is as guiltless as he paints himself, but that doesn’t diminish the exotic appeal of his tale. This is a story much too strange to be fiction.
Daniel Dillon became rich and powerful during the California Gold Rush. Two decades later, the railroads are about to bypass the town he built, people are leaving and he is being forced to acknowledge the price he paid for his past success. The Claim is a Michael Winterbottom film adapted from a Thomas Hardy novel and has a 63 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
The celebration begins on Friday January 13, 2012 with a traditional symbolic libation ceremony, followed by some energetic drumming by Jaliya and Friends. Join us for this special event taking place in the 4th Street Lobby (First Floor), followed by well wishes and a cake ceremonial taking place in the King Collection Area (3rd Floor). Share the experience with friends, neighbors, and community leaders on January 13th from 12 to 1:30 pm
“Where do we go from here?”
Dr. Glen O. Toney - Member of the Board of Trustees - California State University
1:30 to 1:45 pm
Rev. Barry Houston (of The House of Sankofa)
1:45 to 3:00 pm
Then stay after the cake ceremony at 1:30 to hear first Dr. Toney and then Rev. Houston speak.
Dr. Toney holds bachelor’s degrees in philosophy from California State University, Chico (1966) and in mathematics from San José State University (1973), where he also earned his master’s in instructional technology/curriculum development (1971). He earned his doctorate in organizational behavior with a minor in higher education from the University of Southern California (1975). He also holds life credentials from California for General Teaching, Community College Teaching, and Administration.
Reverend Barry Houston is the co-founder and head of The House of Sankofa, San Jose Chapter. Rev. Houston is a graduate of Fisk University (1982),and was mentored in African and World History byDr. John Henrik Clarke, Dr. Ben Jochannon,and Kwame Toure. Rev. Houston has lived with his wife and children in San Jose since 1992.
Kirk Waller Storyteller- From John Henry to Henry "Box" Brown, Kirk Waller brings African American history to life through stories, music, singing and a little magic. You will laugh, cry and most of all be inspired from a proud and rich past that everyone can appreciate.
King Library – 2/11 at 2:00pm
Pearl Avenue Branch – 2/18 at 2:00 pm
Happy 2012! If you got an eReader over the holidays and want to know how to get eBooks from the library, please come by one of these Zoo programs. Or, drop by to learn more about our various e-collections!
Here's the schedule for January:
More dates are coming in February!
“Now, I say to you today my friends, even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: - 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.'”
- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Speech at Civil Rights March on Washington, August 28, 1963
Even though decades have passed since his death, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s words and life continues to inspire and resonate with many of us today. His dream changed our nation and made it a place that embraces and celebrates diversity and equality more fully.
Interested in new and recently published American (and English language) writing? I always look forward to reading the annual volumes of Houghton Mifflin’s Best American Series. Every autumn publisher Houghton Mifflin puts out collections of short stories, essays and other writing genres from the previous year’s writings published in literary and popular magazines, journals and websites. These collections include Best American Short Stories, Best American Essays, Best American Sports Writing and Best American Travel Writing. Each year a well-known writer serves as guest editor. You can find listings of contributers of current annual volumes at Houghton Mifflin's Best American Series website. Another annual collection of fiction and prose is The Pushcart prize ; best of the small presses.
Are you looking for an exciting mystery? Well, look no further. Here you will find the perfect mystery, a broken watch, a missing aviatrix, and the search for the elixir to eternal youth. Hermux Tantamoq, an oldfashioned watchmaker, is a diligent mouse who appreciates the mundane daily routine of going to work, coming home and enjoying his bowl of warm soup and reading the newspaper. Little did he know that when the adventurous Ms Linka Perflinger, who is an aviatrix, arrives at his shop with a broken watch to be fixed, he would be drawn into the dangerous world of international business and the research for the cure for aging. His client goes missing and a doctor at a cosmetics company is murdered. What will happen next? What will Hermux do? Read Time Stops for No Mouse by Michael Hoeye, an excellent mystery for good readers, for children grades five and up.
A poor young governess goes to work at the estate of a brooding aristocrat. When her employer unexpectedly proposes to her, she hopes her luck has changed, but strange things are happening at night and no one wants to talk about the previous mistress of the manor. Directed by Bay Area filmmaker Cary Fukunaga, the new Jane Eyre stars Mia Wasikowska and has a 76 percent rating at Metacritic.
Did you receive an eReader as a gift? Are you interested in buying an eReader, but you don't know which one to buy? Do you want to learn how to download library books onto an eReader or a smartphone? You are invited to attend an eReader Petting Zoo at the Edenvale Branch Library on Tuesday, January 10 from 2:00 - 4:00 pm. Meet the Kindle, Sony Reader, iPad, and other devices for e-Reading. We will discuss all the different different types of ebook and emedia collections available through the library, and show you how easy it is to borrow free library e-books on your device! We invite you to bring your own smartphone or eReader device to this event. This drop in demonstration will last for two hours. Please feel free to come in anytime between 2:00 and 4:00 with your questions.
Mia is a seriously angry teenager living with her single-parent family in a shabby housing project. Things get complicated when her mother's new boyfriend takes an unhealthy interest in her as well. One of the most critically acclaimed British films of recent years, Fish Tank stars Michael Fassbinder and has a 90 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
February 3rd 1977 might have seemed like any other day in Las Vegas but two jazz legends were making a great album that you’ve probably never heard of. Count Basie and Dizzy Gillespie along with Ray Brown and Mickey Roker recorded The Gifted Ones. While not an especially popular or highly regarded album, it is unique and charming and one of my favorites. Count Basie (most known for his big band work) shines in a different light in this intimate quartet setting. Dizzy Gillespie slows things down a bit from his bebop days and plays some mellow melodies. This is a great album for a rainy day, a lazy day, or just about any other kind of day.
Sam and his classmates are going to the zoo for a school field trip. Sam is having so much fun that at one point in time he loses track of his group. Lucky for him, his teacher wears something that's noticeable from afar, a hat with a polka-dot bow.
The sweetness of tears Nafisa Haji.
Why, Jo March asks her mother, does she and her twin brother have brown eyes when their parents' eyes are blue? Jo, like her namesake from Little Women, is determined to find out. This moving and beautifully written family story of betrayal and forgiveness is told in different voices over generations, countries, cultures and religions.
I know very well the sentimental attachment some kids (and some adults too!) have to their favorite outfit… and how distressing it can be when that piece of clothing becomes too small or too shabby to wear any longer. In the new picture book I had a favorite dress by Boni Ashburn, it is Mama’s creativity and talent for sewing that comes to the rescue when a little girl’s favorite pink dress first gets too small to wear and thus becomes a shirt. The shirt then goes on to become a tank top, which then turns into a skirt, and then a scarf, and then a pair of socks, and finally a hair bow. But when even the hair bow is reduced to a few scraps, this time it is the girl herself who knows what to make out of the scraps… a picture of herself wearing all of the different forms of her dress. Readers who are familiar with the 2000 Caldecott Medal winner Joseph had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback will recognize the repurposing theme of this updated version. This new tale also cleverly weaves in the concepts of the days of the week and the change of the seasons.
In the early 1400's, teenage Johanna works as a maidservant to the eccentric Dame Margery. One day, Dame Margery announces that she will travel on a pilgrimage to Rome, and take Johanna with her. The two travel on boat from England to France. Once there, they join other travelers who are heading to Rome. They travel through France, through the Alps, and into Venice. While in Venice, Johanna finds herself separated from the rest of the group. Will Johanna be able to make it to Rome? Will she make it back home to England? Will she ever see her family again? What is Johanna going to do? Read The Book of the Maidservant by Rebecca Barnhouse and find out. This is an adventurous book for middle school students , high school students, and anyone who enjoys historical fiction.
This book is available in the following formats:
What happens if you combine losing two teeth, middle school, the 1989 earthquake, questionable friends, major crushes, The Little Mermaid, and high school? You get Smile (AR 1.0, level 2.6) by Raina Telgemeier!
Smile is an autobiographical graphic novel about the trials and tribulations of wearing braces for four years, in addition to the normal young adult problems. Anyone who has worn braces is sure to say, "I know about that!" For others like me, who have never worn braces, this novel is a revelation about the pain and heartache wearing braces can cause a 'tween or a teen.
Readers will be surprised that the novel takes place in the late 1980's and early 1990's because it is such a timeless tale. In addition to the central focus on her dental difficulties, Raina must also suffer the indignities perpetuated by her so-called "friends" and by her unrelenting crush on Sean.
If you are in the mood for a humorous and likeable character like Raina, pick up Smile.
When librarian Debbie retired, she began volunteering with the Friends of Willow Glen Library (FWGL), her own neighborhood library. She knew FWGL has been able to purchase furniture, pay for special programs, and even enhance the library’s collections with its book sales proceeds.
One day, Debbie came across donations no one wanted to buy: Readers’ Digest Condensed books, with beautifully decorated hard covers. She'd heard there was a way to make a purse from a book, so she did what any librarian would: research! She downloaded patterns from the Internet and created prototypes to show the Friends. Now, besides selling books, the Friends handcraft one-of-a-kind purses; each takes about 12 hours to create. Book Purses were introduced to the public at the Friends’ April, 2011, book sale. Later, a line of E-book Reader Covers was added. To date, FWGL has sold 72 purses and e-reader covers.
FWGL relies on fabric, notions, and handles donations from members, Internet appeals (a local e-list and Freecycle), friends, and neighbors. Recently, the Friends have struck up a partnership with The Thrift Box on Lincoln Avenue, trading donated items that FWGL cannot sell for items like fabric and RDC books donated to the store. The WG Farmers’ Market and Comerica Bank have assisted with sales, advertising, and networking opportunities. Look for Book Purses and other items at your local Friends' next book sale.
Did you know that every branch of the San Jose Public Library has a youth advisory group of teen volunteers called teensReach? In addition to earning community service hours for participating in library activities, members also attend monthly meetings at their local library branch and act as advisors and advocates for the library. If you would like to learn more about what teensReach does and how to become a member check out the teensReach link from our website: www.sjpl.org/teensReach.
At a recent teensReach meeting held at the Dr. King Library, teensReach members were asked for their favorite books and movies that they would recommend to other teens. This is what they came up with…
This popular teen series by James Patterson was listed twice by members of the teen group. The library has copies of the novels in print, e-book, audio book, and manga versions available for check out now.
The fourth and final book of the wildly popular vampire series the Twilight Saga by Stephanie Meyer. All of the books in the Twilight Saga series have now been made into movies and half of this last volume is in theaters now as Breaking Dawn Part One. The book and the movie soundtrack are available now in the library.
This classic animal fantasy tale was first published in 1987 and still holds its appeal today. It was also the first of the now 22 volume series by author Brian Jacques, with volume 22 – The Rogue Crew just published in 2011. If you are already a fan, you can place a hold in now and be one of the first to get a copy of the latest volume when the library’s shipment comes in.
A historical fiction title by K.M. Grant set in the Middle Ages during the Third Crusades. If you like tales about the age of knights and would like to learn a little about what it was really like during those times, you might enjoy this book… the first of three in the De Granville Trilogy.
It was not clear if this recommendation was for the fantasy film Sucker Punch released in 2011 about a girl in a 1950’s mental institution who creates an alternate reality and the quest she goes on to escape that world or if the recommendation was for the book Suckerpunch by David Hernandez about two teenage brothers who drive from Southern California to Monterey to confront the abusive father who walked out on them a year ago and now wants to return. Either way, library patrons are in luck as both are available for check out.
Another teen film available at the library. A summary from the library catalog: After a little white lie about losing her virginity gets out, a clean cut high school girl sees her life paralleling Hester Prynne's in 'The Scarlet Letter, ' which she is currently studying in school. Hoping to become popular, she decides to use the rumor mill to advance her social and financial standing.
Does your child need help with their math homework or a special school project? Then, come bring your child to your neighborhood library in Alviso and get homework assistance from our bilingual (English/Spanish) tutor who is available to help
students in grades K-9 with their homework assignments in math, science, reading or writing.
Our Homework Center at the Alviso Branch Library is available on Wednesdays, 1pm-5pm; Thursdays, 2pm-6pm and Fridays, 2pm-6pm.
Registration is required so please contact the Alviso Branch Library for more information
at (408) 263-3626.
Also, please take advantage of San José Public Library's Live Homework Help which students can chat with an online tutor and get homework help and check out the Kid's Homework Page as well as Teen Page for useful homework related links.
¿Tiene un hijo/a que necesita ayuda con sus tareas de matemáticas o de un proyecto especial de la escuela? Entonces, traigan a su hijo/a a la Biblioteca de Alviso para obtener ayuda con las tareas de nuestra tutora bilingüe que está disponsible para ayudar a los estudiantes en los grados K-9 con su tardeas de matemáticas, ciencias, lectura o gramática.
Nuestro Centro de Tareas en la Biblioteca Alviso (ubicado en el salon comunitario) está abierto los miércoles, 1pm-5pm; los jueves, 2pm-6pm y los viernes, 2pm-6pm.
Es necesario registrarse, por favor póngase en contacto con la Biblioteca de Alviso al (408) 263-3626 para más información.
También, por favor tome ventaja del servicio llamado Live Homework Help de la Biblioteca Pública de San José en donde los estudiantes pueden charla con un tutor en línea y en vivo para obtener ayudar con sus tareas. Además visitan la página de la Biblioteca Pública de San José en la páginas: Kid's Homework Page y Teen Page para los enlaces relacionadas con información para la tareas.
Enjoy a new collection of online eBooks – Books24x7 IT and Wellness titles. The “For Dummies” computer books are all included! These titles are read ONLINE ONLY. They cannot be downloaded to any devices. Here's the link to the collections:
In 1966, three Mossad agents return from a mission to East Berlin and announce to the world that they've assassinated an infamous Nazi war criminal. For decades they're celebrated as national heroes, but someone has appeared claiming to be the man they killed and the press is about to find out. The Debt stars Helen Mirren and has a 65 percent rating at Metacritic.
A Nigerian doctor finds himself stranded in London as a political refugee. Without a work permit, he's forced to take a menial job at a hotel where some very sinister things seem to be going on. A film by Stephen Frears, Dirty Pretty Things stars Audrey Tautou and has a 94 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
In 1815, Jane Austen is 39 and a bit of a celebrity, surprised when others quote her novels back to her and bemused by lovelorn young women seeking her advice. More ominously, she's not in the best of health, money is tight, and she's beginning to wonder if she's made the right choices in life. Included with a recent version of Sense and Sensibility, Miss Austen Regrets stars Olivia Williams in the title role; you can read more here and here.
Happy New Year! If one of your resolutions is to get started on that business plan, you're in luck. On Wednesday, Jan. 11 @ 6:30pm, an experienced speaker from SCORE will be at the Santa Teresa Library to talk about business plans. There will be time at the end of presentation for questions and networking. I hope you will join us for this informative talk.
Steven Spielberg's most recent film, War Horse, is a grand Hollywood epic that depicts the losses and agony of war in a sweeping historical drama. Though the film stays true to the plot of the 1982 young adult novel on which it's based, the book and movie are sharply different in tone and mood. The film boasts Spielberg's signature lush cinematography, stirring musical score, and high drama.
The book, on the other hand, is a small, simple tale that approaches the same subject in its own original way. The book is narrated by the horse Joey, whose innocence and loyalty carry him from his early years as the beloved companion to English farmboy Albert, to the muddy trenches of World War I, after he is sold to the British army by Albert's destitute father. Part of the beauty of the book is seeing the events unfold through the horse's eyes, as he finds kindness and cruelty on both sides of the battlefield. Middle school and high school teachers might want to initiate discussions with their students, comparing the two very different treatments of the themes of war, loss, and the bond between man and horse.
For a third take on this story, theater lovers can look forward to the summer arrival in the Bay Area of the award-winning Broadway production.
Listen to an excerpt from the novel read by the author by selecting this LINK. War Horse is number 17 in the list of audio files.