Friday, October 31, 2008

Earlier Work, Revisited...

Toni Morrison Writes Again
Morrison won the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature for her novel, Beloved, the story of Sethe, a woman who took extraordinary measures to ensure her child was not sold into slavery. Beloved was set in 1873.

A Mercy, Morrison's long-awaited next novel, will be released on November 11 and looks back to/is set in wild America, circa 1680. Click basic plot to learn more about what will surely be a must-read book.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Oddly Enough, This Combination Works...

Mothers and Daughters
National Book Award nominated poet and author Maya Angelou speaks to all women as her daughter in Letter to My Daughter, a graceful and powerful volume of stories, poetry, and point-of-view essays. Through the Storm is Lynne Spears' tell-all about stardom's underworld and her personal struggle to keep her famous children safe from legions of opportunists and manipulators.

Why pair one of American literature's greats with a pop non-fiction quickie? Because each has something to say about self-respect, humility, kindness, true friendship, and rejecting abuse. Angelou's book will just last longer...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Poet of the Month

October's Featured Poet
Kay Ryan (1945-) calls herself a “modern hermit.” Until her appointment as the U.S. Poet Laureate for 2008-2009, she had led a quiet life as a Californian teaching remedial English (relatively undemanding) and writing poetry, the most central, most demanding part of her life. She writes in what one might call a stealth-metaphysical vein that has caused her work to be compared that of Emily Dickinson. It often has an understated surreal quality, like the title poem of one of her books, The Niagara River, below.

The Niagara River
As though
the river were
a floor, we position
our table and chairs
upon it, eat, and
have conversation.
As it moves along,
we notice—as
calmly as though
dining room paintings
were being replaced—
the changing scenes
along the shore. We
do know, we do
know this is the
Niagara River, but
it is hard to remember
what that means.

Further Reading: Elephant Rocks / Kay Ryan, 1996; The Niagara River / Kay Ryan, 2005.

Coming in November: Marilyn Hacker

Content developed by local resident and poet Leland Jamieson
Note from your library: Niagara River is located in Western NY

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fall Fiction Favorites

Slow Cookers and Sizzling Hot Reads
J.D. Robb's latest Eve Dallas mystery, Salvation in Death, is due for release early next week as is David Baldacci's fourth Camel Club thriller, Divine Justice.

Rita Mae Brown's furry detective holiday mystery, Santa Clawed, and Laurell K. Hamilton's latest Meredith Gentry escapade, Swallowing Darkness, are sure to add spice to next week's new fiction stew. Also try the Lisa Kleypas novel, Wallflower Christmas, a light Christmas romance set in Victorian England.

But don't miss John le Carré's latest, A Most Wanted Man. No George Smiley here, but thrilling nonetheless. The title is available in print and on audio CD.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Left, Right, Left, Right...

Walks Though History
For history buffs, we recommend two very different books about our country's political history from WWI forward.

In Uncle Sam Wants You, Christopher Capozzola explores how WWI changed the relationship between citizens/government and how "rights" came to the forefront in our political discussions. Lucid and well-written, the book is worth your time. Click here to listen to an interview with the author.

Thomas E. Woods, Jr. and Kevin R.C. Gutzman offer up Who Killed the Constitution?, an exploration of constitutional issues. Same as Capozzola, the authors discuss the evolution of "rights" and quite plainly, whether or not we have them. Color this book red or blue; step left or right -- either way, this book is a provocative read.

Friday, October 24, 2008

If You Missed the Bus...

Tips from the CT Department of Labor
The DOL's "Career Express" mobile career center was on site at the library yesterday afternoon. Many of you took advantage of expert advice from the DOL on everything from job searching on the Internet to writing a winning resume. If you missed the bus, here's but a few job search web sites recommended by the DOL:

CT Job Central (Connecticut Job Bank) ** Career Builder (Job listings) ** CT State Jobs and Exam Dates ** Jobs in Connecticut (CT classifieds) ** Yahoo Hot Jobs (job listings) ** FlipDog (job listings and resume) ** Academic360 (job listings for colleges, not restricted to teaching positions) ** Snag a Job (Hourly/part-time job listings) ** Indeed (searches multiple job sites) ** Dice Career Hub (technology job board).

The library also offers a variety of books about writing a resume (quick selection here); desk-top software to help you digitize or print it; and public fax service if you need to meet a deadline or a request from a potential employer.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

National Book Awards

Fiction Finalists
National Book Award finalists in the fiction category include well-known and new authors. The five nominees are The Lazarus Project by Bosnian author Aleksandar Hemon, Telex from Cuba, Rachel Kushner's debut novel, Shadow Country by Peter Matthiessen, a founder of the Paris Review, Home, by Marilynne Robinson, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her 2004 novel “Gilead”; and The End, a first novel by Salvatore Scibona.

The winners in this and other categories will be announced at a ceremony on Nov. 19 in New York City.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

"I Spy" Jumps Off the Pages in Fun Museum Exhibit

I Spy... Can You See What I See?
Do you enjoy I Spy books? Come on down to the library and check out our collection of these great riddle books. After you've read a few, take a CT "staycation" trip to the Lyman Allen Art Museum in New London, CT and view the Walter Wick exhibit, where I Spy photographs come to life in over-sized style!

Pictured Above: I Spy Extreme Challenger, I Spy Fantasy, I Spy School Days, I Spy Treasure Hunt, I Spy Mystery. Click here for these and more I Spy favorites.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

National Book Awards

Non-Fiction Finalists
The winners of the 59th Annual National Book Awards will be announced on the evening of November 19th, 2008. There's still plenty of time to celebrate good writing and the best of American literature by adding nominated books to your reading list. Nominees in the non-fiction category are:

This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War by Drew Gilpen Faust

The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordo-Reed

The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals by Jame Mayer

Final Salute: A Story of Unfinished Lives by Jim Sheeler

The Suicide Index: Putting My Father’s Death in Order by Joan Wickersham

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Armchair History

Puritan Nation
Sarah Vowell, a contributing editor for public radio's This American Life, looks back on 17th century New England in her latest book, The Wordy Shipmates. Using primary sources and wit galore, Vowell helps answer the question "Who were the Puritans and why do they still figure so heavily in modern day conversations about who we are?"

This is one great armchair history book about a group of very argumentative people who happened to help shape our country. After reading Vowell's book, we concluded we're still arguing the same subjects more than three centuries later.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Usual Suspects and Them Some

Bestselling Fiction
Nicholas Sparks, John Sandford, and Stuart Woods are no strangers to bestseller lists. They write 'em; we read 'em. Mixed in with Sparks' The Lucky One, Sandford's Heat Lightning, and Woods' Hot Mahogany are some equally hot reads.

Ted Bell's latest, Tsar, is an Alex Hawke spy thiller set in the 'new' Russia. A great book with a current feel for fans of recent favorites Vince Flynn and Stella Rimington.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo comes from the late Swedish crime writer, Stieg Larsson. The plot is intricate and exposes many grim secrets in many closets. The author left the doors ajar just enough to keep us going.

Karen Marie Moning offers up Faefever, in which MacKayla Lane continues the hunt for her sister's killer. This is the third in Moning's Celtic fantasy series. First book is Darkfever; second is Bloodfever. Read them in order so you don't miss a trick.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The World's Richest Man

Warren Buffett
With money matters high on the list of everyone's everyday conversations, we expect demand for Alice Schroeder's The Snowball: Warren Buffet and the Business of Life.

Buffet apparently 'tells all' to the author, a former managing director at Morgan Stanley and who Buffett chose as his biographer. Sure to be an interesting read given Buffett's personal investments in our nation's economy and his stature in the worldwide financial community.

Monday, October 13, 2008


Nelson DeMille follows up The Gold Coast (1990) with The Gate House, due for release later this month. Welcome back Wall Street attorney, John Sutter, whose life is up-ended by Mafia dons.

John Updike follows up The Witches of Eastwick (1984) with The Widows of Eastwick, also due for release later this month. Alexandra, Jane, and Sukie return home...

Paul Theroux took a train trip across Asia more than 30 years ago and his trip-ticket book, The Great Railway Bizaar (1975), became a modern travel classic. Theroux tours again in the Ghost Train to the Eastern Star.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

History, Memoir, Current Events

Latest and Greatest
Annette Gordon-Reed delves deep into early America's mixed-race bloodlines and the complex relationships between Thomas Jefferson, his slave Sally Hemings, and the extended Hemings family. Take it slow; the book is worth your time.

Elizabeth McCracken tells us an intimate story about the loss of her first child just days before birth. The author's heart-wrenching grief is all the more magnified by straightforward prose.

This week we'll also add Linda Robinson's book to our new non-fiction collection, owing to patron requests. The book offers a probative account of strategy and tactics in post-surge Iraq.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Definitely Not Kansas...

Oz According to Gregory Maguire
In Maguire's first Oz novel, Wicked, we learned about Elphaba, the much misunderstood Wicked Witch of the West. Son of a Witch told the story of Liir, Elphaba's son or not; we'll not say witch or which...

The third novel in the Wicked Years series, A Lion Among Men, is due for release this coming Tuesday. We expect to enjoy learning about the Cowardly Lion before and after his adventures with Dorothy.

Sounds like another fun read from the inventive Gregory Maguire, who shows great respect for L. Frank Baum's Oz classics and pays it forward...

Friday, October 10, 2008

For the Smart Connecticut Shopper Connecticut's re search engine
Did you know full text reviews from Consumer Reports are available online? Better yet, did you know all you need to access product reviews from this trusted source is an East Hampton Public Library card?

How to Access Consumer Reports
(1) Login to iConn using your library barcode number; slide down to the Magazines and Journals heading (left). (2) Click on InfoTrac Student Edition; second click on the Publication Search tab. (3) Type Consumer Reports in the Publication Search box; click on the link to Consumer Reports magazine.

Use the 'search within this publication box' to find reviews on a particular product. For best results, we recommend keeping your search terms simple; e.g., washing machines, used cars, gas heaters. Give us a call if you get stuck; that's why we're here.

More Good News
Eric Hansen, iCONN's Electronic Resources Coordinator, recently announced that we no longer have to wait 90 days to read current Consumer Reports reviews online. That is, print and online content will be available at the same time. So pick your format; choose the information retrieval style that suits you best -- and either way, use Consumer Reports for free @ your library.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Pretty People, Stories to Tell

Careers Revisited
Tony Curtis, Bob Wagner, and Diahann Carroll all have stories to tell about what it takes to manage celebrity while at the same time managing the highs and lows of personal life.

What's the verdict? Tony's is the most dishy. Bob's book is in the end, about his love for Natalie Wood. Diahann's book has much to say about racial politics in Hollywood. All three of these books drop famous names galore and are fun, sometimes thoughtful reads.

The overlapping theme, you ask? It's simple: stars are people, too!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Titanic's Last Secret?

Jack and Rose Would Like to Know...
Author Brad Matsen's October release, Titanic's Last Secret, revisits why the Titanic sank into the North Atlantic almost 100 years ago. Newsweek Magazine recently featured an article about Matsen's book; his discoveries and contentions about the what ifs of Titanic's construction.

If you are a Titanic buff and would like to read Last Secrets, place your reserves here. In addition, the library holds a variety of books, both fiction and non-fiction, as well as educational video titles about the Titanic's history. We also have the highest-grossing big-screen film of all time in DVD format. It's all about Rose, Jack, and once-in-a-lifetime love on sinking ship...

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

For 'Da Vinci Code' Lovers

'The Game' Continues...
We've waited 20 long years for Katherine Neville to publish a sequel to The Eight (1998) and our wait is finally over. Now we have The Fire, recently released in trade hardcover.

If you loved the history, adventure, and suspense of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, we highly recommend both of Neville's books. A mystical chess game figures into the plot of each book; the action spans historical periods and generations of the same family.

For historical 'puzzle' and suspense book lovers near and far, Neville's The Eight and The Fire will not disappoint. We're not at all sorry we waited so long for this sequel and hope the author continues 'the game' in future installments.

Monday, October 06, 2008

The Latest 'Primary' Color?

The East Hampton Public Library is one of 18 public libraries in Middlesex County. Over the course of the next year, our 18-strong will be working together on a ‘green’ issue public awareness campaign.

On the ‘green’ town news front, click here to learn about our town’s clean energy champions. For a quick look at green issue books available at the library, click here. Also keep an eye out for an ongoing selection of green programs @ your library. As many you may already know, we're steady about offering informative programs that satisfy you green interests.

County-wide collaboration is supported by the Middlesex County Community Foundation and overall support from the Connecticut Library Consortium.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Pet Stories

Dateline: Iowa
This heartwarming book tells the story of DeweyReadmoreBooks, a kitten who arrived at the Spencer Public Library; became a cat, and called the library home for 19 years. Vicki Myron's book is a great pick for those who believe animals can change people. It's also a winner for library lovers.

Dateline: California
In another charming book, biologist Stacey O'Brien meets a four-day-old baby barn owl, later named Wesley. Given her 19 year-long relationship with Wesley, O'Brien has much to say about the habits and instincts of a barn owl: intelligent, intuitive, loyal, and loving. Say hello to Wesley and enjoy this book.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Tip, Blink, Success!

The World According to Malcolm Gladwell
The Tipping Point (2000) examined how few people it takes to spread a small idea, message or behavior throughout our society.

Blink (2005) examined how people make 'blink of an eye' decisions using first impressions and instinct; who's successful at "blinking" and why.

Coming this November (2008) is Gladwell's Outliers, an examination of what makes people successful. Place your reserves and get ready to tip and blink again...

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Changing Times for Teens

Changing Insights for Parents
Growing up has never been easy and is also not what it used to be. Today's teens face a staggering number of choices, many of them physically and emotionally risky.

Stephen Wallace, former head of SADD (renamed Students Against Destructive Decisions), offers all of us straight talk in his recent book Reality Gap: Alcohol, Drugs, and Sex: What Parents Don't Know and Teens Aren't Telling. The book's core premise is -- when it comes to parent-teen communication -- parents don't necessarily ask the right questions and teens don't necessarily offer revealing answers. The communication gap leads to what Wallace describes as a reality gap.

This is a great book for parent review or for any adult interested in forwarding useful, myth-free, inter-generational dialogue.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

For Suspense Lovers Only

Zip-Through Reads
Canadian author Linwood Barclay's novels offer plenty to like if edge-of-your-seat reads give you pleasure. Bad Move (2004), No Time for Goodbye (2007) and Barclay's latest, Too Close to Home (2008) are good choices for quick-read thrill seekers.

We especially liked No Time for Goodbye, whose main character is a Connecticut teenager. So sorry for bias but we loved the 'local', though fictional touch.