As one stricken with seemingly unquenchable wanderlust, when I can’t be out exploring the world myself (because we all have to work sometimes, right?) I like to read about other’s travels, and thusly live vicariously through their experiences. That’s why one of my favorite genres is travel literature.
In general, travel literature consists of descriptive accounts of a person’s travels, both near and far, as well as people they meet, cultures they encounter, and often a mix of humor, history, science, and speculation. I always learn something new about the locations authors write about as well as some dos and don’ts for visiting a place and being a conscientious traveler, overall.
In the 900s and beyond, we have a good selection of travel writing and travel books to peruse, including travel guides as well as travel literature. Here is a list of travel literature available at the library that I would recommend for those interested in exploring the genre.
Considered a travel masterpiece, this account of Chatwin's journey through Patagonia will make you want to add this destination to your list for new reasons. It includes some history and a search for Butch Cassidy’s cabin, extraordinary descriptions of a seemingly wild place, and a lot of soul searching.
In the desert, water is life, and knowing how to find it can determine whether you survive. While Childs wanders the American deserts in order to map water, he shares his scientific knowledge and waxes philosophical about the meaning of water in relation to life and death, in a place where the resource is so sparse.
Before Che Guevara was a revolutionary, he was a med student who started out on a motorcycle journey to experience South America with his best friend, Alberto Granado. Through his experience and reflections on this journey, you can see the beginnings of his revolutionary leanings as he encounters social injustices and hardships of people throughout the country.
Famed and funny travel author Bill Bryson relishes the reader with stories of his travels in Australia where he encounters interesting natives and spouts facts about the deadly and peculiar animal and insect inhabitants. Bryson is a wonderfully insightful and beloved travel author, so picking up any of his books will not disappoint.
Scott Carrier, a journalist and radio producer living in Utah, travels around the world in search of stories. In this book, Carrier writes thoughtfully about what it means to be an outsider traveling through areas of religious fanaticism in both Afghanistan shortly after 9-11 and amongst the Mormons in Utah.
TRAVELS WITH CHARLEY: IN SEARCH OF AMERICA by John Steinbeck
THE GREAT RAILWAY BAZAAR: BY TRAIN THROUGH ASIA by Paul Theroux
SEA AND SARDINIA by D.H. Lawrence
BREATHLESS: AN AMERICAN GIRL IN PARIS by Nancy Miller
Last week, I posted the first half of my day in an attempt to answer the age-old question: "What does a librarian do all day?" The day in question is April 20, 2016; we pick up shortly after my lunch break.
Summer. Summer. Summer. We can hear it whispering on the breeze, feel it pulsating through the growing grass, and sense it drifting off the blossoming trees. It seems to be all we can do to survive the next four weeks until that blessed last school bell rings, propelling both kids and parents alike into 11 weeks of homework-free bliss.
For many, it’s the best time of the year: vacations, family reunions, days at the pool, moonlit night games, and glowing fireflies. Unfortunately with all of that fun comes the dreaded “summer slide” – a research-proven loss of math and reading skills in our kids. Children from low-income households fare worse than average, losing “more than two months in reading achievement” over the summer when they no longer have access to the academic resources available through their school (National Summer Learning Association).
The good news is that, together, we can beat the summer slide! Scholastic offers the following three tips to prevent loss of reading skills over the summer (follow the link for more in-depth descriptions):
The Provo City Library is here to help your children have fun AND keep reading this summer. Our Summer Reading Kickoff event will be on Saturday, June 4 from 9 am to 5 pm. Come sign up and get a jump start on our 2016 Summer Reading Program. Parents, you too! Register for the adult program and be a great reading model for your kids. The Children’s Department will be hopping with lots of fun programs and challenges throughout the summer, so let’s work together to beat the summer slide!
*The Children’s summer program schedule is now available at the Children’s Reference Desk.*
This month I am challenging teens to write six word memoirs. That’s right, you have just six words to convey all 12 to 18 years of your life! To get the creative juices flowing, here are a few examples of six word memoirs written by famous and not-so-famous authors. If you like these, stop by the library and check out NOT QUITE WHAT I WAS PLANNING to find many more!
Ernest Hemingway: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”
Elizabeth Gilbert: “Me see world! Me write stories!”
Dave Eggers: “Fifteen years since last professional haircut.”
Stephen Colbert: “Well, I thought it was funny.”
Bill Querengesser: “70 years, few tears, hairy ears.”
Dr. Jane Goodall: “Forest peace, sharing vision, always optimistic.”
Georgene Nunn: “Born in desert, still thirsty”
Harvey Pekar: “Fight, work, persevere – gain slight notoriety.”
Elizabeth Bernstein: “The psychic said I’d be richer.”
Nora Ephron: “Secret of life: marry an Italian.”
Sabra Jennings: “Extremely responsible, secretly longed for spontaneity.”
Joyce Carol Oates: “Revenge is living well, without you.”
Linda Williamson: “Painful nerd kid, happy nerd adult.”
Feeling inspired? Come to the Teen Corner before May 14th and write your own six word memoir! Show your completed memoir to a librarian at the First Floor Reference Desk and you’ll receive a small treat.