Jackson S

  • tensecrets

    1. We know where the Dinosaurs are off hand and on command…it’s 567 if you’re wondering.

    2. We look at the titles you are checking out… because if we see it twice it means it was good!

    3. We’ve seen every condition a book can come back in… from sodden to crispy.

    4. We make and keep booklists for a wide array of topics and genres.

    5. Taken together, our librarians read two books a day. Our individual average is 6 books a month.

    6. We’re constantly updating our collections; we add a sorting cart full of books almost every week!

    7. We love having downloadable audiobooks; it’s the only way some of us have time to read!

    8. We often recommend books from unfamiliar genres; some us keep lists of bestsellers and friends’ recommendations so that we can know what to suggest.

    9. We love people doing scavenger hunts here; just remember to be quiet on the second floor!

    10. We love suggestions for books and activities.

  • sci fi 01

  • politics

    Most novels take place in a country, but readers hardly ever hear about the intricate dance that is international politics. In honor of an unusual political season, these are my five favorite fantasy novels that explore the political ramifications of the plot. These books combine the excitement of fantasy with the sense that our heroes’ choices matter in the larger world. 

    prince of thornsPRINCE OF THORNS
    by Mark Lawrence

    Prince Jorg Ancrath rebels against his father after his mother and younger brother are murdered. The series follows his quest for power and allies in a dark and magic scourged Europe. 


    promise of bloodPROMISE OF BLOOD
    by Brian McClellan

    Field Marshal Tamas stages a coup against his king and the revolution that follows provokes war with neighboring countries and with the deities wakened by the death of the monarchy. 


    captains furyCAPTAIN’S FURY
    by Jim Butcher

    After years of war with the invading Canim, Tavi of Calderon, now Captain of the First Aleran Legion, uncovers information about an even greater threat, and must risk everything to forge a desperate alliance between the Aleran and Cane to take on their mutual enemy. This is the third book in the Codex Alera series, and easily my favorite. Though I would recommend reading the two books before this one (because the series is great), a new reader can still understand and enjoy CAPTAIN’S FURY on its own.    

    wolfs eyesTHROUGH WOLF’S EYES
    by Jane Lindskold

    The king declares that a girl raised by wolves and found in the wilderness is in truth his lost granddaughter. ‘Firekeeper’ (or lady Blyss as she is renamed by the humans) finds her return to civilization complicated by the machinations of court, the counter-intuitive nature of cutlery, and ancient magic as the nobility scrambles to take advantage of the new potential heir.   

    into the stormINTO THE STORM
    by Taylor Anderson

    Set in 1942, the crew of an outdated destroyer flees from the Japanese offensive in the Pacific into a storm that transports them into a primitive alternate world, populated by strange creatures. The crew finds new civilizations and makes allies and enemies as a different world war brews with entirely different stakes. 


    Honorable Mentions:

    WHEEL OF TIME by Robert Jordan - Being the Chosen One is a lot more difficult when you have to wrangle countries on your way to fighting the Dark One!

    THE AERONAUT’S WINDLASS by Jim Butcher - Airships, talking cats, and the possibility of war. Another book by Butcher, the semi-piratical protagonist accidentally gets drawn into the intrigue of an invasion plot.

    ELANTRIS by Brandon Sanderson - Arriving in the kingdom of Arelon to enter a marriage of state, princess Sarene discovers that her intended has died and that she is considered his widow, leaving her a lone force against the imperial ambitions of a religious fanatic.

  •  comic


    Our graphic novel festival is just around the corner! Here's a list of some of our favorite graphic novels to get you ready for a weekend of 'comic' relief.


    by Brian O’Malley

    The first book in the Scott Pilgrim vs the Universe series, Precious Little Life introduces the captivating juxtaposition of real life problems with bizarre video game style rules and mechanics.


    mcninjaDR. MCNINJA
    by Christ Hastings

    Originally started as a webcomic, Dr. McNinja runs on the rules of whatever is funniest and craziest goes. From his first adventure rescuing his family of ninjas from pirates, to his gorilla receptionist fighting the undead, Dr. McNinja is entertaining from start to finish.


    hedge knightHEDGE KNIGHT
    by GRR Martin

    Adapted from his Knight of the Seven Kingdoms series, Hedge Knight offers a look at the world of Game of Thrones a century before the events of the main series. Following a wandering knight by the name of Dunk, the series shows the struggle of good man trying to live his code in a world that considers honor a liability.


    justice leagueJUSTICE LEAGUE NEW 52
    by Geoff Johns

    Part of the New 52 reboot, the Justice League series introduces the core collection of superheroes as they try to work together to save the earth from an alien invasion. For new readers to DC’s universe, this is a great place to start as you get to know the characters.


    by Noelle Stevenson

    Nimona follows the titular villain’s sidekick as she and Lord Blackheart try to upset the balance of good and evil by proving the kingdom’s heroes aren’t as shiny as they pretend. Great for younger and older audiences alike, Nimona demonstrates both complexities in morality as well as in the well-developed female protagonist. Also, Dragons!

  • winter indoor


    If you like snow in Provo, you’re in luck! It’s everywhere! If you prefer to stay warm inside instead of venturing into our winter wonderland, here are some of my favorite indoor winter activities.


    We’re a library, we gotta recommend reading! If you aren’t sure of what you’d like to read, the library maintains three rotating displays in addition to the ones for new materials. They are located in front of the 1st and 2nd floor reference desks as well as in the south east corner for YA materials. If you don’t see anything that jumps out at you there, come to the reference desk, we would love to recommend something just for you!


    If you don’t have your own (or are just sick of always playing host), come to the library on Friday nights; from 5 to 9 we have a host of games to choose from and plenty of tables to use.


    In our nonfiction sections, we have a myriad of hobby, art, and skill manuals geared for all ages. Try looking in call number 741 for drawing tips or 736 for sculpting. 787 has music and instructions for playing the guitar, and general hobby texts start at 790.


    This one requires some friends and know-how, but if you’ve got dice and paper you can make it work! While it’s most famous for DnD, there are a ton of systems and game styles out there. Roleplaying at its core is just collaborative storytelling.  If you aren’t sure of where to begin, our teen librarians are hosting an introduction to roleplaying activity on January 17th, and we’d love to see you there!

  •  magicalworld


    The success of the latest Harry Potter adventure shows that people are always fascinated by magic. Since even Harry’s kids are getting in on the magic phenomenon, here are five of our favorite magical series.


    by Brandon Sanderson

    An orphan, a pack of thieves, and an omnipotent God-ruler come together to make a fantastic epic. Underlying the Mistborn series are two detailed and well-thought out magic systems that run on consuming or touching metal. Sanderson’s works are all enhanced by the complexity of his magic systems, and the engaging plot of the Mistborn series makes it an all-time favorite.


    name of the windNAME OF THE WIND
    by Patrick Rothfuss

    As an adult, Kvothe is a washed-up innkeeper with a dark secret. When he’s discovered by a famous scribe, he tells the story of his youth as a storied magician and warrior who one day will be known as “the King Killer.” Kvothe’s magic is more subtle than others on this list; he’s primarily concerned with learning the name of the wind, which will allow him to control it. Rothfuss’ books are rich and complex, with a developed mythos and story-telling tradition.


    eye of the worldWHEEL OF TIME
    by Robert Jordan

    Most magic makes the lives of its users better, but for Rand al-Thor and the other men in Wheel of Time, magic causes insanity and death. The epic series follows Rand as he transforms from a simple farm boy into the hero who can defeat the Dark One. Wheel of Time is great because of its twin magic systems and diverse cast of characters. Unusual for a male author, some of the best developed and admirable of these are women.


    dresdenfilesTHE DRESDEN FILES
    by Jim Butcher

    A blend of fantasy and noir, the Dresden Files feature Harry Dresden, Wizard PI. Operating in Modern Chicago, Harry solves mysteries, fights off vampires, and tries to pay his rent. This series uses magic in a way that fans of the “other Harry” will recognize; the limits of wizards are only the limit of their imagination. This series is one of my personal favorites; you can pick it up with the first book, STORM FRONT, but the long-term plot gets really good in book 3.


    promise of bloodPROMISE OF BLOOD
    by Brian McClellan

    Inspired by the French Revolution, Promise of Blood follows Field Marshall Tamas as he overthrows a greedy monarch and tries to establish a free republic. Greedy allies, vengeful gods, and foreign cabals of mages are pitted against his unusually talented powder mages: men and women who draw their power from gunpowder.



  • time travel


    The idea of time travel has fascinated readers since Mark Twain published A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR'S COURT (though the earliest time travel novel was a Russian work, THE FOREBEARS OF KALIMEROS by Alexander Veltman). A common theme of time travel stories is the notion of free will, and if people and timelines can change. It’s common to wonder what life would be like if not for a single decision, be it large or small. So, in the spirit of existential exigencies, here are my top five time travel stories  

    invisible libraryINVISIBLE LIBRARY
    by Genevieve Cogman

    Irene is a professional spy for the mysterious Library, a shadowy organization that collects important works of fiction from all of the different realities. Most recently, she and her enigmatic assistant Kai have been sent to an alternative London. Their mission: Retrieve a particularly dangerous book. The problem: By the time they arrive, it's already been stolen. These librarians travel not only through time, but through alternative versions of Earths to achieve their objectives.  



    by Eric Flint

    Time travel on the scale of a whole community. The small town of Grantville, USA finds itself carried through time and space to 17th century Germany, the epicenter of the Thirty Years War. Caught in the middle of one of the bloodiest wars in history, members of the town must struggle to reinvent and uphold the democratic values they treasure to endure a storm no one could foresee.  




    into the stormINTO THE STORM
    by Taylor Anderson 

    Time travel on an evolutionary scale. A crew of sailors from the Second World War find themselves in a world where humans never evolved; instead the Earth (whose map is largely identical to our own) is populated by the endearing Lemurians, a race of sapient felinoid monkeys, and the terrifying Grik, a race of sapient velociraptors. The crew of the USS Walker must figure out how to survive in a world at war for survival itself.  



    by Michael Crichton

    A secretive corporation allows a group of archeologists to use their time machine to rescue a colleague lost in the year 1357. They have 37 hours to find him and come back, or they’ll be lost in the past forever!  




    time machineTIME MACHINE
    by HG Wells

    When a turn-of-the-century scientist builds a time machine, his perilous journey into the far distant future leads to the discovery of a strange and terrifying new world.  

  • Hold Shelves

    At the Provo Library, we offer a number of different options for holds. Not only can patrons put items on hold when they are checked out, they can also place holds on checked in items. Items are pulled and placed on the self-service hold shelves within a few days of the hold being placed.

    When your hold comes in, you'll receive an email or text notification letting you know it's ready. After four days, your hold automatically expires and we remove the book from the hold shelf, so be sure to get here quickly!

    Finding the book you've placed on hold can be a little bit tricky the first time you do it, so here's what you'll want to know. The hold shelves are located in the northwest corner of the adult reference section, around the corner from the circulation desk. We organize our hold shelves by the beginning letters of the borrower's last name. The holds are not alphabatized beyond the first letter or two, so look through the entire letter section that applies to you.

    Here's the process for finding your hold after you've been notified by email or text that it's ready.

    • First, find the letter marker closest to your name; for instance, if your name is "Rider," find the section labeled "R." If your last name is “Ryder”, find the section labeled “RO.”

    •  Notice that the "RO" section is split between two shelves. If your last name is “Rogers” your hold could be on either of these shelves. If we have lots of holds for a particular letter marker they will continue onto the next shelf.

    hold shelves graphic

    • Once you’ve found the shelf with your last name, look for the title of the item(s) you’ve been notified about. Items are grouped by the date we placed it on the hold shelf, so your holds might not be right next to each other.

    • Check the paper slip in the item for the first four letters of your last name and the last four numbers of your library card. If you have more than one card on your account, the number will correspond to whichever card was used to place the hold.

    Can't find your hold? There are a few common reasons for this:

    The hold has expired

    Double check when you received your hold notification. If it's been more than four days, the item will no longer be held for you. It may not have been checked out or held for someone else yet, though, so check in at the circulation desk to find out.

    You placed the hold under another card number

    Was the hold placed under the card of a household member with a different last name? Make sure you're checking in the right section.

    It's a new or popular DVD

    Based on how long waitlists are and the number of people waiting per copy, new and very popular DVDs are held in the circulation department instead of on the hold shelves. If your DVD isn't on the shelves, ask at the circulation desk, and they can bring it out for you.


    Please be courteous to your fellow patrons; if you remove an item by mistake, take it to the Circulation desk to be re-shelved. If you need any other help finding or checking out your holds, please come to the Circulation desk around the corner from the self-service hold shelves. We’d love to help you!

    Lastly, be sure to check out your holds once you've found them! The holds can only checked out to the account they are associated with, so make sure you have the correct card number and pin with you. 

  • summertime

    Every summer, everyone seems to go out of town on vacation all at once, leaving you to your own devices. Here are some things you can do while your friends are gone so you can have a story to trade for their exploits.


    This is a new database that we just acquired; it’s built around five or ten minute video tutorials that teach software, technology, creative, and business skills. It’s great for picking up new hobbies and self-improvement.

    Learn something amazing!

    Guitar/piano/recorder etc.… books to learn to play

    You can learn how to play guitar pretty easily just practicing a couple minutes here and there. Other instruments take a little bit more work, but if you’re not trying for concert level, you can pick up enough to play your favorite songs. Check out the 787 call numbers to learn the basics and 781 to learn the classics and the new, or ask a librarian for help.

    Local hikes

    People from all over the world come to Provo and the areas around it for the hiking available in your own backyard!

    Take a hike!

    Build your own kayak and use it free at Utah Lake

    Nothing is cooler than boating in a boat you built yourself. Make sure you don't sink by following these handy instructions.

    If that sounds like too much work, swimming at Utah Lake is also free! Go to the lake!

    Friday night Magic the Gathering games at Dragon’s Keep

    There are free activities hosted by stores and clubs around Provo; check them out to meet new people and learn new hobbies. Call your favorite stores or check online to see what activity is being hosted!

    Make your own cosplay outfit for comic con (or save it for Halloween)

    Comic Con is coming up in early September, and there are whole host of other conventions in area this summer; be one of the cool kids and dress the part

    Summer reading activities at the Library

    We have a host of things to do right here at the library! Come to our events and earn points and prizes for participating in the Summer Reading Program! 

    Local Museums 

    What hidden treasures lay undiscovered in Utah Valley? Find out!

    Pick-up games at Kiwanis Park

    A lot of people hang out at Kiwanis and play soccer with whoever is there; you can set up a Facebook group with people you know so you can check who can show up on any given day.

    Get book recommendations from our librarians

    Our librarians are full of recommendations? Come up and talk to us at the desk to find your new favorite book. Feeling introverted? Fill out a personalized reading recommendation and we'll email you back a response. Don't trust us? Trust an algorithm

  • wildgenres


    Books at the Provo library (as you may know) are divided up into fiction and nonfiction, and then fiction is further subdivided into general, mystery, romance, and sci-fi. Ideally, this categorization makes it easier to browse and find books. Sometimes, however, it’s hard to decide where a given title or subgenre should be. I’ve composed a short guide for the dedicated literature quester to help track their quarry down in the stacks.


    Despite the name of this collection, the vast majority of the works contained therein are actually some variant of fantasy. Another name for this collection type is speculative fiction; whether science or magic, the idea is to picture a world fundamentally different from our own in some way. In our collection, in addition to the many subgenres, we actually have a unique classification for Star Wars, Star Trek, and the Forgotten Realms books.

    Here you'll find: 

    • Epic Fantasy
    • Military Science Fiction
    • Dystopia/ Post-apocalyptic
    • Urban Fantasy
    • Women’s Fantasy

    It’s ok for love to be in the air, just as long as our books aren’t! Most stories have romantic elements or sub-plots, but our romance collection reserves its space for those books where love stories and romance are the main focus of the story. Our romances therefore are almost a slice of every genre, since a love story can take place within the backdrop of deep space, a cooking mystery or anything between.

    Some of our more popular subgenres are:

    • Regency romance
    • LDS romance

    “If there was a problem, yo, I'll solve it! Check out the [book] while my DJ revolves it!” Even Vanilla Ice is into our mystery section. From the classics to the culinary mystery trend, our collection strives to cover all the bases. See if you can find one of each:

    • Animal sleuths (cats & dogs)
    • Christian Mysteries
    • the Classics
    • the Cozy
    • Crafting: antiquing, knitting, flower shops, etc.
    • the Culinary
    • the English Mystery
    • the Historical Mystery
    • Noir Crime
    • Paranormal Mysteries
    • Police Procedurals
    • Senior Sleuths
    • the Whodunit

    By far the largest collection, our general fiction section can seem eclectic. I promise though, there is a method to our madness. The nature of general fiction stems largely from its purpose as a home for genres out of place in other collections; hence you will find:

    • Horror
    • Thrillers
    • Chick Lit
    • Historical Fiction
    • Inspirational Fiction
    • Westerns
    • Classic Literature
    • Mixed and indeterminate genres 

    Two collections we haven’t discussed are the young adult and the Spanish sections. We work very hard to maintain and expand these sections, but we don’t segregate genres within them. Both collections do have a new books display, and you should definitely check them out! 

    Happy hunting!