September 30, 2014

Staff Pick: If I Stay

Life is going good for Mia - a family who adores her in spite of the fact that she's a classical cello player in a rock loving family, a boyfriend in a rising rock group who loves her, and a possible chance to attend the famous Julliard after graduating high school. Mia couldn't be happier.

Until it's all taken away by one unexpected car wreck, leaving her in some kind of strange limbo as she's rushed to the hospital in critical condition. By some twist of fate, she's an observer of what happens to her body instead of a participant. As events unfold, Mia is left with one difficult choice: Should I stay or go?

Gayle Forman's If I Stay was a very thought provoking story of what if? If something like this were to happen, what choices would you end up making? Throughout it all, Mia wrestles with the choice that she has to make, and dealing with the unknowns attached to that choice.

I enjoyed the book, though I had some difficulty getting into it at first, mostly because the majority of Mia's story is told through flashbacks. Those flashbacks give us a stronger image of what Mia's life was like before the crash, and how hard it will be for her to continue on if she stays. And also how hard it will be on those who remain behind if she happens to choose to go.

If you'd like to check out If I Stay, you can find it in our catalog by clicking here.


September 15, 2014

Staff Pick: Emma Kate

I love drawing, and almost always write, with pencil. My dad also always wrote with pencil, and often used the chunky carpenter pencils in his trade.

The heart of Emma Kate by Patricia Polacco for me is the illustrations done in pencil by the author, that takes the reader into a wonderful story about the warmth and comfort that dreams, memories and imagination can bring - with a surprising twist at the end.

A great book for back to school, Emma Kate is for memory-making! If you'd like to check it out, you can find it in our catalog by clicking here.

-Nancy H.

September 11, 2014

Meet Your Librarians: Nancy J.

Name: Nancy J.

Position: Library Assistant

Last book read: There Goes Gravity: A Life in Rock and Roll by Lisa Robinson

Book(s) you've read over and over again: There aren't any books I've read more than twice.

Favorite author(s): Jack Kerouac, Alan Ginsberg, Patti Smith, Jeannette Walls

If you were an author, what genre would you write? Poetry

Favorite places to eat, shop or hang out in Oskaloosa: My house, Goodwill, Fareway

Pets: None - my husband has allergies so I kept him, gave away cats.

Interesting, not well known fact about you: I collect vintage mid-century lamps.

Click here to read all posts by Nancy J.

August 21, 2014

Blue Zones Power 9: Wine @ 5

This is the sixth post in a nine-part series in which we are sharing resources available at the library to help you get on track with the Blue Zones Project.

According to the Blue Zones website, "Moderate drinkers outlive non-drinkers, especially if they share those drinks with friends." We're aware of the possible dangers associated with alcohol, but in limited amounts, some alcoholic beverages - especially wine - do have their benefits as well. Check out this article from that suggests that drinking one glass of wine with dinner may help you de-stress and decrease your risk of heart disease.

Here are a few titles in the library's collection that will help you Wine @ 5:

Oz Clarke's Introducing Wine
by Oz Clarke

Learn how to taste, buy and serve wine; how to open and how to store wine; how to choose wine in a restaurant; and how to match food with wine. In his always lively and clear descriptions, Clarke surveys the range of tastes available and directs you to the wines that will give you what you want.

Drink This: Wine Made Simple
by Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl

Grumdahl presents this handy guide that will show you how to stop being overwhelmed and intimidated, how to discover, respect, and enjoy your own personal taste, and how to be whatever kind of wine person you want to be, from budding connoisseur to someone who simply gets wine you like every time you buy a bottle.

Wine for Dummies
by Ed McCarthy and Mary Ewing-Mulligan

This down-to-earth guide cuts through wine snobbery and tells you what's in, what's out, and what's new in wine. This update of the bestselling For Dummies classic covers everything from established and emerging wine regions to pairing wine with food to collecting wine.

Wine Uncorked
by Fiona Beckett

A practical introduction to the enjoyable art of tasting and drinking wine. With the aid of a unique, specially created flavor wheel, it helps you explore and identify the exciting and subtle flavors of wines and choose those you will like best, so  you can select wine with confidence to complement any mood or occasion.

If you'd like to check out any of these books, click on the title to be taken to our online catalog. You can place a hold on the item using your library card number and your PIN.

All book descriptions adapted from book jackets.

August 11, 2014

Staff Pick: Half Bad

Sally Green's Half Bad is the thrilling start to a trilogy about a young witch with an indomitable will to survive. Nathan Bryn looks forward to his seventeenth birthday when he'll receive three gifts and become a full witch. But he's a Half Code. Born the illegitimate son of a white witch and the infamous, hated black witch named Marcus, he's put under strict surveillance and house arrest by the council of white witches that views him as a threat.

Nathan is eventually imprisoned in a cage, beaten and handcuffed by a merciless trainer because of the council. Through all this, he struggles to determine if he's inherently good like his mother or evil like his father. As his seventeenth birthday approaches, Nathan fights to escape and find his father while remaining undetected by the council and the witch hunters after him. He must receive his three gifts before it's too late.

Half Bad is a thought provoking and engaging read that I couldn't put down. Green's character is honest, and the story makes you want to fight on his side. I look forward to reading the next book, Half Wild, which is due out March of 2015.

If you'd like to check out our copy of Half Bad, you can find it in our catalog by clicking here.