The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane (author) and Jackie Morris (illustrator)

Reviewed by Jane Oliver-Purton (Library Staff)

This book begins: “Once upon a time, words began to vanish from the language of children. They disappeared so quietly that at first almost no one noticed – fading away like water on stone. The words were those that children used to name the natural world around them: acorn, adder, bluebell, bramble, conker – gone!”

This book describes all those beautiful words and more in lyrical acrostic poetry, and the drawings of each old word are executed by Morris in watercolor, ink, and gold foil.

The illustrations of this natural world are exquisite. It is a book to take your time reading and absorbing and picking up a few new-old words.

Located in Children’s Nonfiction (J 821.92 MAC)

 

Films in Focus: Hallmark Movies

Hallmark Movies: Hallmark Channel plays movies that are feel good romances. While they might be a little cliched, sometimes you just need a Hallmark movie marathon. All of these movies have been on the Hallmark Channel! (And you might spot a famous Duchess in one of them!)

The Birthday Wish (2017)

On her birthday, a woman who desperately wants her boyfriend to propose to her wishes for the opportunity to see into the future, with surprising results. (DVD BIRTHDAY)

 

Campfire Kiss (2017)

Feeling disconnected with her teenage son, a protective mother decides to step outside of her comfort zone and take him camping. But as soon as she arrives, she begins butting heads with her handsome cabin neighbor, a single father and outdoorsman who is also in search of a connection with his teen daughter. Friction soon sparks a flame as these opposites attract. (DVD CAMPFIRE)

Dater’s Handbook (2016)

Cass is a successful business woman that appears unsuccessful in her personal life and decides to try The Daters Handbook at her sisters encouragement and dates several guys to test the process. (DVD DATER’S)

 

Love at First Glance (2017)

After being dumped by her fiancé for being unadventurous, a woman sets out to prove him wrong by tracking down the handsome stranger , whose cellphone she found on the subway. (DVD LOVE)

 

Marrying Mr. Darcy (2018)

Elizabeth, a down to earth school teacher and Donovan, a reserved New York businessman, are very different. Which means their engagement and wedding is nothing if unpredictable. (DVD MARRYING)

 

My Secret Valentine (2018)

A young woman takes advice from the chalkboard notes that her mysterious house rental tenant leaves when a slick sales rep arrives with plans to buy her family’s prized winery. (DVD MY SECRET)

 

Once Upon a Prince (2018)

A prince visiting the U.S. falls for a commoner when he helps her. But his mother isn’t pleased with the match and tries to prove that the American gal isn’t suitable to be a royal bride. (DVD ONCE)

 

Royal Matchmaker (2018)

An NYC matchmaker is hired by a king to find his son a suitable wife in time for a national celebration. As the clock ticks towards her deadline, the matchmaker finds him the perfect wife — only to realize that she’s fallen in love with him. (DVD ROYAL)

 

Very, Very, Valentine

When florist Helen meets a dreamy mystery man at a masquerade ball, she and her friend Henry set out to find him. (DVD VERY)

 

Wedding Bells (2016)

Two people with commitments issues are asked to be best man and maid of honor at their friends wedding. With nothing much in common, they both didn’t expect to find the romance of a life time. (DVD WEDDING)

Out of the Blue by Sophie Cameron

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

Teenage Jaya lost her mom in an accident eight months ago. Since then, mysterious winged Beings have been falling to earth from the heavens. Out of the dozens of falls, no Being has survived.

Jaya is alone in an Edinburgh park when a Being falls right in front of her, surviving against all odds. The Being is so frightened and alone that Jaya can’t bring herself to turn her in to anyone–even Jaya’s own father, who has become obsessed with calculating exactly where and when the next Being will fall. Jaya hides the Being (whom she names Teacake, after the Being’s favorite snack) in a vacant apartment and ends up sharing her secret with a few new friends who have secrets of their own.

This book was quiet and thought-provoking, remaining realistic despite the supernatural elements. A recommended read for anyone who is feeling contemplative.

Located in Teen Fiction (TEEN FIC CAMERON)

Cold Pursuit (2019)

Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

Quick Review: When will people learn to stop messing with Liam Neeson’s family!

Longer Review:
Meet Mel Coxman (Liam Neeson), town-proclaimed “Citizen of the Year.” Coxman is an ordinary man, grieving the untimely loss of his son whose death was cast off by the medical examiner and authorities. Deemed an overdose and told he never really knew his son, Coxman’s sole objectives become truth and justice. He is a formidable man, far more sinister than characters Neeson has played in other films precisely because he lacks “a very particular set of skills.” He is like you or me but fueled by unimaginable pain and rage which settles him on a level the viewer can identify with. It is human nature to protect and defend your loved ones, how far would you go for yours?

Available through the Bridges Library System

#TBT: 1951-1952

Popular Books Published Between 1951 and 1952

1951:

Foundation / Isaac Asimov

A band of psychologists, under the leadership of psychohistorian Hari Seldon, plant a colony to encourage art, science, and technology in the declining Galactic Empire and to preserve the accumulated knowledge of humankind. (FIC ASIMOV)

 

Prince Caspian / C.S. Lewis

Four children help Prince Caspian and his army of Talking Beasts to free Narnia from evil. Includes map. (J FIC / J PBK LEWIS)

 

The Catcher in the Rye / J.D. Salinger

After leaving prep school Holden Caulfield spends three days on his own in New York City. (FIC / TEEN FIC SALINGER)

 

1952:

Invisible Man / Ralph Ellison

An African-American man’s search for success and the American dream leads him out of college to Harlem and a growing sense of personal rejection and social invisibility. (FIC ELLISON)

 

The Old Man and the Sea / Ernest Hemingway

Santiago is a Cuban fisherman who encounters a giant marlin in the Gulf Stream and the battle for his catch becomes one of survival against a band of marauding sharks. (FIC HEMINGWAY)

 

The Borrowers / Mary Norton

Miniataure people who lived in an old country house by borrowing things from the humans are forced to emigrate from their home under the clock. (J FIC / J PBK NORTON)

 

The Power of Positive Thinking / Norman Vincent Peale

Peale’s work describes how to achieve a permanent and optimistic attitude through unending positive conscious thought, usually through affirmations or visualizations. Peale writes that such techniques will give the reader a higher satisfaction and quality of life. (248.4 PEA)

 

East of Eden / John Steinbeck

California’s fertile Salinas Valley is home to two families whose destinies and fruitfully, and fatally, intertwined. Over generations, between the beginning of the twentieth century and the end of the First World War, the Trasks and the Hamiltons will helplessly replay the fall of Adam and Eve and the murderous rivalry of Cain and Abel. (FIC STEINBECK)

Player Piano / Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut’s first novel spins the chilling tale of engineer Paul Proteus, who must find a way to live in a world dominated by a supercomputer and run completely by machines. Paul’s rebellion is vintage Vonnegut: wildly funny, deadly serious, and terrifyingly close to reality. (FIC VONNEGUT)

 

Charlotte’s Web / E.B. White

The story of Wilbur, the pig, smallest of the litter, who is raised by the farmer’s daughter, and who finds a friend in Charlotte, the spider. (J FIC / J PBK WHITE)

 

Did you know? Les Paul started selling his classic electric guitar in 1952.

Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly

Reviewed by Emily Terasa (Library Staff)

Historical fiction is a very popular genre, and one of the most popular time periods is World War II. While there are many great World War II historical fiction books, like The Nightingale and All the Light We Cannot See, I was looking forward to a historical fiction book set in a different time period. Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly was just what I was looking for. While it takes place during World War I, which I admit isn’t too far away from World War II; it really is a different world and time period.

Technically Lost Roses is the prequel to Martha Hall Kelly’s first novel, Lilac Girls, but it definitely stands on its own. This book follows three women, Eliza Ferriday (the mother of one of the protagonist’s in Lilac Girls), Sofya Streshnayva (a cousin of the Romanovs), and Varinka (a fortune-teller’s daughter) as they navigate the trials and tribulations of World War I, from New York, St. Petersburg, and Paris.

Eliza and Sofya are best friends, after meeting in Paris one summer. Eliza travels with Sofya to visit the splendors of Russia. War is on the horizon. Eliza goes back to her family in America while Sofya and her family flee to their country estate, where they hire the Varinka, who brings intense danger to their household. Eliza tries to help the White Russian families in New York, but when Sofya’s letters stop coming, she becomes bound and determined to find her best friend.

The lives of these three women intersect in powerful ways. Inspired by true events, this novel celebrates the bonds of friendship during dark days of despair.

Located in Adult Fiction (FIC KELLY)

Films in Focus: Royalty

Royalty: Sometimes it is fun to imagine being a royal, but then reality hits and you realize it is not as easy or as fun as it might seem. All of these movies are about real royals to help you see what it is really like to be a royal!

Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007)

A mature Queen Elizabeth endures multiple crises late in her reign including court intrigues, an assassination plot, the Spanish Armada, and romantic disappointments. (DVD ELIZABETH)

 

The Favourite (2018)

In early 18th century England, a frail Queen Anne occupies the throne and her close friend, Lady Sarah, governs the country in her stead. When a new servant, Abigail, arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. (DVD FAVOURITE)

 

Grace of Monaco (2014)

The story of former Hollywood star Grace Kelly’s crisis of marriage and identity, during a political dispute between Monaco’s Prince Rainier III and France’s Charles De Gaulle, and a looming French invasion of Monaco in the early 1960s. (DVD GRACE)

 

Henry V (1989)

In the midst of the Hundred Years War, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France in 1415. (DVD HENRY)

 

The King’s Speech (2010)

The story of King George VI, his impromptu ascension to the throne of the British Empire in 1936, and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch overcome his stammer. (DVD KING’S SPEECH)

 

Mary Queen of Scots (2018)

Mary Stuart’s attempt to overthrow her cousin Elizabeth I, Queen of England, finds her condemned to years of imprisonment before facing execution. (DVD MARY)

 

The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)

Two sisters contend for the affection of King Henry VIII. (DVD OTHER BOLEYN)

 

 

The Queen (2006)

After the death of Princess Diana, Queen Elizabeth II struggles with her reaction to a sequence of events nobody could have predicted. (DVD QUEEN)

 

A Royal Night Out (2015)

On V.E. Day in 1945, as peace extends across Europe, Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret are allowed out to join the celebrations. It is a night full of excitement, danger and the first flutters of romance. (DVD ROYAL)

 

The Young Victoria (2009)

A dramatization of the turbulent first years of Queen Victoria’s rule, and her enduring romance with Prince Albert. (DVD YOUNG VICTORIA)

Powers of a Girl by Lorraine Cink & Alice X. Zhang

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

This beautiful little book is a biography of 65 fictional ladies who grace the pages of the Marvel Universe, from Captain Marvel and Black Widow to Valkyrie and (my personal favorite) Squirrel Girl.

Each biography is supplemented with gorgeous illustrations, including a breathtaking full page portrait of each dangerous dame. Alice X. Zhang magically captures the beauty, strength, and personality of each character in her colorful, broad-stroked style.

As someone who has read a handful of superhero comics but isn’t well-versed in the multiverse, I appreciated the succinct backgrounds on the often confusing histories of our heroes, which are sometimes ridiculously over the top, even for superheroes. The humorous, conversational tone kept me interested, although I did find the “Girl Power” message to be a little grating and heavy-handed for my taste.

Located in Graphic Novels (GRAPHIC MARVEL)

Egg (2018)

Reviewed by Cassidy Hammel (Library Staff)

The description of this film promises, “An unflinching comedy about why women choose motherhood, why they revere it, fear it, and why some women forgo it. Starring Christina Hendricks, Alysia Reiner, and Anna Camp.” Christina Hendricks tapped my interest, I’ve seen her in Good Girls and liked her well enough to peruse more but the longer I watched, the less hope I had that it would be at funny at all. I got through the whole movie, wondering more than once if I should just abandon it, without laughing. Some espouse it for its focus on gender and parenting roles in a world where such concepts are constantly evolving but that story line doesn’t make up for the cast of miserable characters. Both couples have glaring issues with their significant other and the main character falls into rants denouncing traditional pregnancy whenever she can, even though her audience includes her pregnant best friend. If you’re seeking something light-hearted and funny, I can save you some time, you will not find it here.

Located in DVDs (DVD EGG)

#TBT: 2003

Popular Books Published in 2003

A Great and Terrible Beauty / Libba Bray

After the suspicious death of her mother in 1895, sixteen-year-old Gemma returns to England, after many years in India, to attend a finishing school where she becomes aware of her magical powers and ability to see into the spirit world. (TEEN FIC BRAY)

 

The Da Vinci Code / Dan Brown

When an elderly curator of the Louvre turns up murdered, his body surrounded by enigmatic ciphers written in invisible ink, code-breaker Robert Langdon and French cyptologist are called in to unravel the clues to the killing, only to discover that the riddles are linked to the works of Leonardo da Vinci and to a clandestine, ruthless sect within the Catholic Church. (FIC BROWN, DAN)

A Short History of Nearly Everything / Bill Bryson

The author traces the Big Bang through the rise of civilization, documenting his work with a host of the world’s most advanced scientists and mathematicians to explain why things are the way they are. (500 BRY)

 

The Tale of Despereaux / Kate DiCamillo

The adventures of Despereaux Tilling, a small mouse of unusual talents, the princess that he loves, the servant girl who longs to be a princess, and a devious rat determined to bring them all to ruin. (J FIC / J PBK DICAMILLO)

 

The City of Ember / Jeanne DuPrau

In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions. (J FIC / J PBK DUPRAU)

 

The Time Traveler’s Wife / Audrey Niffenegger

Passionately in love, Clare and Henry vow to hold onto each other and their marriage as they struggle with the effects of Chrono-Displacement Disorder, a condition that casts Henry involuntarily into the world of time travel. (FIC NIFFENEGGER)

 

Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers / Mary Roach

A look inside the world of forensics examines the use of human cadavers in a wide range of endeavors, including research into new surgical procedures, space exploration, and a Tennessee human decay research facility. (611 ROA)

 

We Need to Talk About Kevin / Lionel Shriver

The mother of a teenage boy who killed seven fellow students and two adults in a high-school shooting writes a series of letters to her estranged husband on their son’s upbringing and questions what she fears may be her own part in the tragedy. (FIC SHRIVER)

 

The Devil Wears Prada / Lauren Weisberger

A small-town girl fresh out of an Ivy League college lands a job at a prestigious fashion magazine, but wonders if the glamorous perks are worth working for the editor from hell. (FIC WEISBERGER)

 

Maisie Dobbs / Jacqueline Winspear

Maisie Dobbs entered domestic service in 1910 at thirteen, working for Lady Rowan Compton. When her remarkable intelligence is discovered by her employer, Maisie becomes the pupil of Maurice Blanche, a learned friend of the Comptons. In 1929, following an apprenticship with Blanche, Maisie hangs out her shingle: M. Dobbs, Trade and Personal Investigations. (FIC WINSPEAR)

Did you know? The Human Genome Project that mapped the structure of DNA and all the specific information that it contained completed its work in 2003. 

 

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