Food and books…these are a few of MY favorite things! There are so many great food memoirs, cookbooks, and novels where food is the main attraction that it's hardly surprising that I just can't get enough of them. Here are five more of my favorites, in no particular order (can't get enough either? Here are the first five I recommended!).
Billie Breslin has moved from her California home to take a job at Delicious, the most iconic food magazine in New York. When the publication is shut down, Billie is offered a new job: staying behind in the magazine's deserted downtown mansion offices to uphold the "Delicious Guarantee.” What she doesn't know is that this experience will lead to a life-changing discovery.
While I have only recently picked up this book and haven’t had a chance to make anything yet, I’m excited to try out several of the recipes. In flipping through the book I’ve already learned a lot, like did you know that you can brown ground beef in a crockpot?!? I’m anxious to try that tip since cooking ground beef is one of my least favorite food prep tasks.
Rose Edelstein is able to taste people's emotions in food, which at first discovery is quite shocking. She learns to harness her gift as she becomes aware that there are secrets even her taste buds are unable to discern. A full review of this title can be found here.
Tips and tricks to help cooks on any level improve their skills in the kitchen. A full review of this title can be found here.
Although I read this book four years ago, I still think about this memoir often. After a freak accident, aspiring chef Molly Birnbaum must figure out how to cope and hopefully continue her career now that she is unable to smell or taste as she once could. A full review of this title can be found here.
It’s book sale time! That time when you can buy 15 books for the price of one!
We will be open from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. That gives you eight hours of treasure hunting and here are five tips to help you get the most out of this one-day event:
1. Know the lay of the land
There are 4 general areas of the book sale. As you come into the ballroom, through the south entrance...
Beyond these very general categories, we do not sort our books. This means you should give yourself plenty of time to search for things you may want.
2. Arrive early...but maybe drop in a few times throughout the day
There are some truly amazing finds among the hundreds of boxes of books available at our sales. Sometimes the best stuff goes fast, so arriving early can be a very good idea. However, as books fly off the tables, we replace them with more boxes so that what is available for purchase changes throughout the day. You can find great stuff all day long!
3. Know what's available and why
Many people wonder where all these books come from. Well, they come from a couple of places:
You can tell the difference between these two categories by looking at the spine to see if it has a spine label or any other stickers or markings showing the library owned the book previously. Donations will usually be free of these labels and they often look newer and have seen less use. So, if you're looking for "like new" kinds of books, skip the ones with spine labels; if you're looking for well-loved but popular books, searching through library discards might be the way to go (you'll often find a Harry Potter or Diary of a Wimpy Kid book hanging out in a box of discards just because it's circulated so many times!).
4. Be prepared with help and bags
With over 23,000 items on display for sale, you may need to bring a little help to sort and search. Gather your posse and attack the job together. If you know what you're looking for, divide and conquer! Also, bring bags and boxes to haul away your booty. We supply some shopping bags and boxes, but eliminate any uncertainty and bring your own reinforced modes of transportation. Books are awesome…but they are also heavy!
5. End of the day deals
Toward the last hour or so of each sale we usually start thinking about the big job of hauling all the leftover books back down to the basement for storage until the next sale. That’s a big job, and we like to make it smaller by lowering the prices of the books. So, come back at the end and see what additional discoveries you can make!
Bonus Tip: Every year, we have a book sale in association with the Summer Reading Kickoff! If you register at the kickoff that day, you will receive a voucher for one free book.
Let’s talk about one of the proverbial elephants in the room of literary works: graphic novels. As a form of literature, graphic novels and comic books have been around for nearly a century. However, the term “graphic novel,” which was originally used in the 1960s, did not gain prominence until the late 1970s (Hintz & Tribunella, 2013). Since then, the term has become more widely accepted as describing a book-length story with images that uses panels. Recently, there has been an increased interest in the format. Although comic books and graphic novels have always found an audience, in the last decade alone their sales in North America have increased by 90% (Gavigan, 2014). Graphic novels for all ages covering a variety of topics are being published every year. According to one statistic, sales increased from $43 million in 2001 to a staggering $375 million in 2007 (Holston & Nguyen, 2008).
Despite this recent surge in interest, many people are hesitant to accept the format and many negative perceptions and misconceptions surrounding graphic novels still exist. For example, one misconception that is still being corrected is that the word “graphic” refers to the level of violent or sexual content found in the books (Chance, 2014). Many still associate comics and graphic novels exclusively with superheroes. Some also believe that the format should not be considered a legitimate literary format. Others think the format is a good start for reluctant readers before they move onto other formats.
Although there are studies that support the use of graphic novels and discuss their benefits and literary merits, the purpose of this post is not to prove whether or not graphic novels have literary value or educational benefits. The purpose of this blog is to invite you to decide for yourself what you think of the format. Check out a graphic novel (yes, all ages can do this). See what you think of the format. We have three collections of graphic novels and comics: one for children, one for teens and one for adults. I believe that books can play a variety of roles for different people. See what role you might want graphic novels to play for you.
Here is a booklist of graphic novels (they are for children but adults and teens might enjoy many of them too!).
Chance, R. (2014). Young adult literature in action: A librarian's guide (2nd ed.). Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited.
Gavigan, K. W. (January, 2014). Shedding new light on graphic novel collections: A circulation and collection analysis study in six middle school libraries. School Libraries Worldwide, 20 (1), 97-115.
Hintz, C., & Tribunella, E. (2013). Reading children's literature: A critical introduction. New York, NY: Bedford/St. Martin's.
Holston, A., & Nguyen, T. (2008). The maverick graphic novel list: Unmasking the mystery of comics and graphic novels for libraries. Texas Library Journal, 84(3), 92-95.
In honor of our Harry Potter Middle Movies Marathon tomorrow (see our movie page for more info!) I've assembled a list of the 10 best secrets that JK Rowling has let slip since the end of the Harry Potter series.
1. She has a detailed plan of what happened to most of the characters after the last book.
Most people already know a lot of these character details, but it's fascinating to know that Rowling has mapped out the futures for many of her characters, she even knows the name of every child born in the Weasley clan for 20 years after Lord Voldemort is defeated.
"Harry and Ron utterly revolutionized the Auror Department," Rowling said, with Harry becoming the department head. J.K. also said she could see Harry making an appearance every now and again to give the "odd talk" on Defense Against the Dark Arts. Hermione is "pretty high up" in the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, and Ginny was a professional Quidditch player until she had three children, and afterword wrote for the Daily Prophet.
2. Being on a chocolate frog card is Ron's personal "Finest Hour."
In fact, Harry, Ron and Hermione all wound up with their own chocolate frog cards. Harry's card says that he is "the first and only known wizard to survive the Killing Curse, most famous for the defeat of the most dangerous dark wizard of all time, Lord Voldemort."
Ron's card gives him credit for "destroying the Horcruxes and subsequent defeat of Voldemort and revolutionizing the Ministry of Magic." Rowling says that being on a chocolate frog card is Ron's "finest hour." On hers, Hermione gets credit for being "the brightest witch of her age" and that she "eradicated pro-pureblood laws" and campaigned for "the rights of non human beings such as house-elves."
3. Harry and Lord Voldemort are family.
The wizarding world is a small one, and Harry and Voldemort are linked through the three brothers who possessed the hallows. Harry's father, James, is a direct descendant of Ignotus Peverell, who passed the Invisibility Cloak down through his family. Voldemort's mother, Merope Gaunt, is a descendant of Cadmus Peverell, who possessed the Resurrection Stone. Although it's possible to infer this from the seventh Harry Potter book, Rowling confirmed that the pair are "distantly related" through the Peverells, saying: "nearly all wizarding families are related if you trace them back through the centuries."
4. We've all been pronouncing 'Voldemort' wrong.
Rowling admitted in September, 2015 that she always intended the 't' of Voldemort to be silent - and that she was pretty sure she was the only person who pronounced it as such.
5. Ron left his job as an Auror to co-manage Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.
Ron joined his brother, George, as a partner at their successful joke shop, Weasley's Wizard Wheezes. George's first child (named Fred... cue heartbreak), grows up to have a very successful career, helped by Ron.
6. When Draco met Harry Potter, he thought Harry could be the next Dark Lord, which is why he tried to befriend him.
“Draco was raised in an atmosphere of regret that the Dark Lord had not succeeded in taking command of the wizarding community,” Rowling wrote, revealing that before meeting Harry on the Hogwarts Express, Draco, his family and other ex-Death Eaters thought Harry could be “another, and better, Voldemort.”
7. There's a list of "sacred 28" pureblood families.
An anonymous male created a list called the “Sacred Twenty Eight,” a definitive list of Purebloods, and the Potters are not on it. In the early 1900s, Henry Potter publicly condemned the Minister for Magic, who didn’t want the magical community to help Muggles in World War I. This was “a strong contributing factor in the family’s exclusion” from the list. The Weasleys deplore their status as one of the twenty-eight, for which many other family clans call them "blood traitors."
8. There's a spell that will let you see through an invisibility cloak, and Dumbledore used it on Harry.
Ever suspect that Dumbledore knew Harry was at some of his most secret meetings? That's because he did. Rowling said he could silently use the incantation "homenum revelio" to see him. Dumbledore uses the spell to see Harry and Ron under the Invisibility Cloak in Hagrid's hut in Book 2. Hermione later uses this spell in Book 7 when they arrive at 12 Grimmauld Place, and it's used again by Death Eaters when looking for Harry at Xenophilius Lovegood's house.
8. There are 11 wizarding schools... that we know about.
Rowling has revealed so far that there are 11 schools registered with the International Confederation of Wizards. The largest of these is in Africa, called Uagadou. There are also schools in Japan, Brazil, France, North America, Russia, and a few other undisclosed locations.
9. Hagrid and Dumbledore are two halves of a father figure for Harry.
“The colours red and white are mentioned many times in old texts on alchemy,” Rowling writes, explaining that some say these colors symbolize base metal and gold, representing “two different sides of human nature.” These colors inspired the names of two relevant characters in the Potter universe: “Rubeus (red) Hagrid and Albus (white) Dumbledore…both hugely important to Harry,” Rowling writes. “Seem to me to represent two sides of the ideal father figure he seeks; the former is warm, practical and wild, the latter impressive, intellectual, and somewhat detached.”
10. Hogwarts tuition would cost you $43,000... if it wasn't free.
When a Mic journalist estimated it would cost more than $43,000 to attend Hogwarts, including the cost of wands, robes and cauldrons, Rowling shut down the rumor, explaining that there is no tuition as the Ministry of Magic covers the cost of all magical education.
I hope this whets your appetite for a Harry Potter fest tomorrow! Come to the ballroom for all three films or just stop by for your favorite. Feel free to bring some blankets to spread out on or use our chairs. We'll have crafts and activities to do while you watch the films, and there may be a few prizes to win as well!