Friday, July 29, 2011

To order or not to order?

Each year, the library receives a city appropriation of about $95,000 to spend on new materials for the library. I and my staff are trusted to make good decisions about how to spend this money. We read reviews, receive patrons' requests, watch for what's hot or popular in bookstores and the media, and in general try to meet the recreational and informational reading interests of the citizens of Dover.

Regardless of my own personal views and opinions, I attempt to purchase materials across the whole social, political, and economic sprectrums, fairly representing all sides of any issue. Several times a year, I grumble "waste of money" when having to order some book that I know is ephemeral, trashy, self-serving or which plays loose with the facts. But I do indeed order it if there are enough patron requests and I keep my opinions to myself.

I grumbled this year about "Where's the Birth Certificate?" by Jerome Corsi. It was heavily promoted in the spring and we had requests, so I ordered a copy ($26). On April 27, President Obama released the full copy of his Hawaiian birth certificate which made this issue moot and it fizzled away along with Donald Trump. The book arrived in mid-May and we filled all the patrons' requests. Now it's hibernated on the new non-fiction shelves, not moving since June 15. No one else has checked it out. No one is interested in the subject any longer.

I was complaining to another librarian about spending the $26 (less our jobber discount of course) on Corsi's book, when she gave me a good reason not to feel wasteful. Isn't it better, she mused, to have spent money for one copy at the library that many people will read than to have those many people each purchase their own copy at $26 per and put even more money into the author's pocket? I had to agree!

So sometimes, we make a less-than-worthy choice in acquiring a book simply to fill public demand. But public demand does count. If those people were happy to get Corsi's book at their public library, then I guess I'm doing my job!

By the way, we have a policy that if a book doesn't circulate for four years, it is withdrawn from the collection and sold at the booksale. Here's looking forward to 2015!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Worst Opening Lines!!

The winners of the annual Bulwer-Lytton Contest were just announced. Entrants competed to compose the very worst opening sentence for an imaginary novel. Its name comes from Victorian novelist Edward George Bulwer-Lytton who wrote "It was a dark and stormy night" as the first line of one of his books.

See for all the winners, but here are some of my favorites this year:

"Wearily approaching the murder scene of Jeannie and Quentin Rose and needing to determine if this was the handiwork of the Scented Strangler--who had a twisted affinity for spraying his victims with his signature raspberry cologne--or that of a copycat, burnt-out insomniac Sonny Kirkland was sure of one thing: he'd have to stop and smell the Roses."

"Within the smoking ruins of Keister Castle, Princess Gwendolyn stared in horror at the limp form of the loyal Centaur who died defending her very honor: "You may force me to wed," she cried at the leering and victorious Goblin King, "but you'll never be half the man he was."

"Detective Kodiak plucked a single hair from the bearskin rug and at once understood the grisly nature of the crime: it had been a ferocious act, a real honey, the sort of thing that could polarize a community, so he padded quietly out the back to avoid a cub reporter waiting in the den."

Groan loudly and enjoy!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Space Age Technology

I heard an NPR news report recently about how car manufacturers are looking towards young kids, as young as 6, to find out what they look for in cars. An analyst for says " as young kindergarten are already having an impact on the kind of cars they'll end up driving. She says in recent years, carmakers have realized the importance of knowing what the buyers of the future want. All they have to do is ask them." I know that I am not a marketing or advertising person but I was thinking---really? My son is a bit younger but when I asked what he would want in a car he came up with some ideas from Chris Van Dusen's book "If I Built a Car". In the book a little boy imagines all the things that he would incorporate into his car if he built one such as an instant snack bar, pool, robot to help with the driving, and of course the car could drive on water, under the water and in the sky. Sounds a bit pricey, but looks for it in showrooms near you in about 10 years!

Animals of the World @ DPL

Miss Kimberly held another fabulous drop in story hour this morning with the theme of Animals of the World.The Library echoed with young voices singing about crocodiles and monkeys. It sure sounded like a lot of fun. I can't wait to see her next drop in story hour on August 3. The theme is Folklore & Fairytales. Children are encouraged to dress up as their favorite story time character for this story hour- princess, dragon, knight, pirate, etc. Don't miss it!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Bluebeary loves the "One World, Many Stories" theme of the Children's Summer Reading Program. Namaste from Bluebeary.

Monday, July 25, 2011

In Search of Thrillers

Looking for some thrilling summer reading? The International Thriller Writers held a meeting this month in which they announced the winners of the 2011 Thriller Awards. The winners are:

Best Hard Cover Novel:
Bad Blood by John Sandford

Best First Novel:
Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

R.L. Stine, ThrillerMaster
in recognition of his legendary career and outstanding contributions to the thriller genre

Joe McGinniss, True Thriller Award

Karin Slaughter, Silver Bullet Award

Thursday, July 21, 2011

What comes next?

Just came across an interesting article about "10 Fantasy Book Series That Could Replace Harry Potter at the Movies." I haven't read all 10 of the series listed, but I for one think that Artemis Fowl would make a wonderful movies series. What do you think?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Coming Attractions

Hey, only 248 days until The Hunger Games movie arrives. Fans will be whipped into a frenzy by then. Until then, read the books....


Do you know how to play mancala? Me either but Miss Amy taught some lucky kids how to play today in the Children's Room. If you missed this event we have others planned for the kids this summer:
***Thurs., July 28: Craft class with Miss Karin @ 2pm (ages 7-12)
***Tues., Aug. 2: Learn to play bocce with Miss Amy @ 2pm (ages 7-12)
Sign-up for these programs in the Children's Room--we would love to have you join us.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Harry Potter Generation

I was watching news coverage of the record breaking opening of the last Harry Potter movie this morning. Many teens who were interviewed who commented on how they grew  up with Harry Potter. They started reading the series in elementary school and are graduating High School as the series and movies are finishing. Many said they feel like seeing the movie was like having their childhood end. I think it is remarkable and wonderful that a generation can be defined by a book.

Friday, July 15, 2011

One World, Many Stories

"Bluebeary" is really getting into the Summer Reading Program theme, "One World, Many Stories". What will he be wearing next week?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Parking Changes

The City of Dover has established a 3 hour parking limit in the parking lot behind the Library. If you need to be here at the Library for more than three hours please tell a librarian and we can give you a special pass.

Guard Your Privacy

If you are concerned about maintaining your privacy on your Facebook account, you should take it look at this article on what settings you need to look at on Facebook. It has a handy slideshow that explains the settings and shows you what you will see on your computer screen. I hope you find it helpful.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Jane Kennedy and her dog, Sasha, from the Cocheco Valley Humane Society will visit the library to talk about pets and pet care on Thursday, July 14 @ 10:30a.m. Pets as ―Purrr-fect friends, the ―ABC’s of Pets and Pet Care, choosing the pet that’s right for you, and safety around animals will be discussed. Please join us and discover the valuable work that is being done at CVHS and how this work serves the animals in our community.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Reading Program Fun!

We had a great time last week watching Lindsay & Her Puppet Pals tell adapted fairy tales from around the world! This week, the Summer Reading Program fun continues with a movie today @ 2pm (The Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules), a drop-in story time on Wednesday @ 10:30am, a make-it, take-it "tissue paper flower" from Central America at the craft table, and a special presentation (Purrr-fect Pets) by Jane & her dog Sasha from the Cocheco Valley Humane Society on Thursday @ 10:30am.
And, don't forget, even though 328 children signed up for the program last week, there are still plenty of reading logs and folders to be given out. Don't miss out on all the prizes, the raffles, and the fun!

Friday, July 08, 2011

Around the World in 80 (Recent) Books

Our summer reading programs, "One World, Many Stories" for children and "You are Here!" for teens have 294 registered participants after only 3 days of sign-ups! Hurrah!!

In order for our adult patrons not to feel left out, we've compiled a list of 80 recent titles (both fiction and nonfiction) that also promote the theme of travel. If your summer plans can't take you to exotic places this year, try one of these books which span the globe. Follow this link to get to the list:

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Monday Movie Madness

Next Monday, July 11th begins our Monday Movie Madness series. Here is the line up of movies we will be showing:

**Monday, July 11 @ 2:00pm: Diary of a Wimpy Kid 2: Roderick Rules, rated PG.
**Monday, July 18 @ 2:00pm: Gnomeo & Juliet, rated G.
**Monday, July 25 @ 2:00pm: Rango, rated PG.
**Monday, August 1 @ 2:00pm: Despicable Me, rated PG.
**Monday, August 8 @ 2:00pm: Yogi Bear, rated PG.

All movies are shown in the Library Lecture Hall.
BYOP: Bring your own popcorn! All are welcome.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

A Summer Full of Fun

This morning Miss Kimberly entertained a roomful of our littlest (and cutest) patrons with stories, songs, and dancing. The Children's Room staff has many events planned throughout the summer to keep the little ones entertained so please take a look at their newsletter so you won't miss out on any of the fun.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

NH Downloadable Book Tips & Tutorials

We have had lots of people in looking for help with their eReaders, even a teen who came in to sign up for the Summer Reading Program. I love how excited people are about being able to load up their devices with eBooks, and audiobooks. There is a great resource you should know about if you are interesting in downloading books, put together by one of the Librarians at the NH State Library, called the NH Downloadable Books Blog. It has many easy to follow tutorials with screenshots to help you through the process of downloading, as well as hints and tips to handle common problems. I highly recommend it, it will save you some frustration. Here are just a few of the topics covered:

Getting Started with eBooks has separate tutorials for  PC users with a Nook, Kobo, or other compatible reader that requires eBooks be transferred with Adobe Digital Editions, PC users with a Sony Reader, Mac users with a Nook, Kobo or any other compatible reader that needs Adobe Digital Editions to load the eBooks; Mac users with a Sony Reader; iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch Users; and Android Phone Users.

There is another whole section on getting started with audiobooks which has separate tutorials for Mac and PC users. Don't forget to check out the How To Tips!