Saturday, September 24, 2016

Got Non-Fiction



As a teacher, I am always encouraging my students to read more non-fiction. Recently, I decided I ought to take my own advice and move away from my go-to mysteries. As I pondered what non-fiction area to delve into, I thought back to my childhood and remembered the times spent at camp making terrariums with my aunt. She patiently and carefully showed me what to do and we got busy collecting items for our terrariums. These fond memories sparked my interest and I decided to do some research into terrariums.

I started looking on Minerva, the electronic “card catalog” and I found two great books. Basically, a terrarium is a miniature world in a glass environment. It usually contains a bed of small rocks, moss, and various tiny plants. You can add minerals, sea glass, and even a tiny gnome.


Terrarium Craft : create 50 magical, miniature worlds by Amy Bryant Aiello & Kate Bryant ; photography by Kate Baldwin.

This book had lots of tips about how to create a terrarium, what to include, and the various materials and tools needed.





The New Terrarium : Creating Beautiful Displays for Plants and Nature By Tovah Martin ; photographs by Kindra Clineff.

This book had lots of great ideas on creating beautiful displays.



Caring for a live moss terrarium is fairly easy. All mosses need to be in filtered or dappled light, but should never be in direct sunlight. Even artificial light will work fine. Containers should have a lid unless the opening is very small. A light misting from a spray bottle is required approximately every two to four weeks. Condensation is not uncommon but may be a sign that the terrarium is getting too much sun or temperature fluctuation. If the moss is dry to the touch, give it a good misting, leave the lid off for about an hour to let the moisture evaporate, then move it to a shadier spot.

Terrariums are relatively self-sustaining ecosystems that generally need limited care. Remember to keep the glass clean for better viewing!
         Sarah Duffy, Library Assistant

Saturday, September 17, 2016

New Children’s Books for September



Picture books

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles by Michelle Cuevas. Illustrated by Erin E. Stead.

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles has a job of the utmost importance. It is his task to open any bottle found at sea and make sure that the message is delivered. He loves his job, although he always wishes that one of the letters would someday be addressed to him.

Then one day he finds a bottle with the most intriguing note inside, and no name attached. As he devotes himself to solving the mystery, he ends up finding what his heart wanted all along.

They All Saw a Cat  by Brendan Wenzel.

In this glorious celebration of observation, curiosity, and imagination, Brendan Wenzel shows us the many lives of one cat, and how perspective shapes what we see.

The Mixed-Up Truck by Stephen Savage.

It’s the cement mixer’s first day on the job, and he doesn’t want to make any mistakes. How can he help the other trucks on the construction site?  By mixing some powdery white cement, of course.

When he mixes it up and adds a little water things don’t quite turn out as planned. But he keeps trying and eventually learns that making mistakes isn’t always a bad thing.


This is the story of some extremely cute animals who faced some extremely mean bullies with some extremely heavy machinery.


As trees sway in the cool breeze, blue jays head south, and leaves change colors, everyone knows-autumn is on its way!

Join a young girl as she takes a walk through forest and town, greeting all the signs of the coming season. In a series of conversations with every flower and creature and gust of wind, she says goodbye to summer and welcomes autumn.

NanoBots by Chris Gall.

Imagine a robot the size of a dot or even smaller! It’s for real: microscopic machines called Nanobots may someday be able to save the world! But first, they have a few smaller problems to tackle.

These bots and their high-tech friends sure make the inventor’s life easier-but when the most awesome robot in town is in danger, these tiny taskmasters learn that sometimes the smallest helpers can make the biggest difference!

Graphic Novels

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey.

When Greg the police dog and his cop companion are injured on the job, a life-saving surgery changes the course of history, and Dog Man is born. With the head of a dog and the body of a human, this heroic hound has a real nose for justice. But can he resist the call of the wild to answer the call of duty?

HiLo: Saving the Whole Wide World by Judd Winick.

HiLo and his friends must save the world from monsters from another dimension.

Chapter Books
      
Moo by Sharon Creech.

When twelve-year-old Reena, her little brother, Luke, and their parents move to Maine, Reena doesn’t know what to expect. She’s ready for beaches, blueberries, and all the lobster she can eat. Instead, her parents “volunteer” Reena and Luke to work for an eccentric neighbor named Mrs. Falala, who has a pig named Paulie, a cat named China, a snake named Edna and one very ornery cow named Zora.

From Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech comes a lovely and uplifting story of how a little kindness can change lives, reminding us that if you’re open to new experiences, life offers surprises.

The Best Worst Thing by Kathleen Lane.

Front door locked, kitchen door locked, living room windows closed. Nobody in the closet, nobody under the beds. Still, Maggie is worried. Ever since she started middle school, she sees injustice and danger everywhere-on the news, in her textbooks, in her own neighborhood. Even her best friend seems to be changing.

Maggie believes it is up to her, and only her, to make everything all right. Can she come up with a plan to keep everyone safe?

“The Best Worst Thing” is a perceptive novel about learning the limits of what you can control, and the good-sometimes even best-things that can come of finally letting go.

Makoons by Louise Erdrich.

Born in the thaw of late winter, when steam ravels from the dens of bears to signal their birth, Makoons in named for the Ojibwe word for little bear. He and his twin,
Chickadee, have moved with their family to the Great Plains of Dakota Territory, leaving behind the reservations-leftover land that the US government tried to give them. The plains belong to the buffalo, and Makoons and Chickadee are eager to learn the ways of the hunters and help their people make a home in this new land.

But Makoons has had a vision, one that tells him that he and his family will never return east to the lake and to the woods. The vision also tells him that his family will face great challenges-challenges that they may not be able to overcome.

The sequel to “Chickadee”,” Makoons” continues the story that began with “The Birchbark House”, one Ojibwe family’s journey through a hundred years of American history.

Inspector Flytrap by Tom Angleberger & Cece Bell.

Hoping to become the greatest detective that ever grew, Inspector Flytrap, a Venus Flytrap, and his assistant, Nina the Goat, investigate "big deal" mysteries at an art museum, a cookie shop, and a garden.

Reviews have been copied from book flaps or from item records.

Ginni Nichols, Children’s Librarian

Sunday, September 11, 2016

One hundred years ago, a letter arrived in Gardiner....

Written from Columbia University, the letter congratulated a Gardiner author on winning the Pulitzer Prize for biography.  The author, who compiled scrapbooks of her family life and day-to-day goings on, dutifully pasted the letter on the next available page in her Family Log and moved right along....

Neither she nor the letter made note of the fact that that she and her sister were the first women to win a Pulitzer.  In fact, as 1917 was the inaugural year of the most celebrated prize for literature, the event made little more than a tiny ripple in Laura E. Richard's daily life.  No one yet understood just how monumental a moment it was  -- nor just how often Gardiner and the Kennebec Valley region would come to celebrate future prizes and commendations for authors who called it home.


This week, in honor of the 100th Anniversary of the Pulitzer Prize, we are proud to be kicking off a six-event program celebrating our place - in history, in geography, and (especially) in literature.

Join us in celebrating our region through the eyes of Pulitzer Prize winners Laura E. Richards, Edwin Arlington Robinson, and Robert P. Tristram Coffin.  Explore how history, family, and community stimulate great works of literature today.

Come hear the stories of how local authors -- Pulitzer-Prize winner Barbara Walsh, Maine Literary Award winner Deborah Gould, and historical author, Representative Gay Grant -- have come to create compelling works that transport readers through time and place.


See how place and history can enrich creative works.  Explore your own voice in putting words to the page at a full-day writing workshop and/or join us for the finale of our series.
See all the events explained below:


We look forward to welcoming you to any or all of the events.  Call us at 582-6890 if you have any questions.

We will also have some wonderful artifacts and photographs on display in the Hazzard Reading Room for the coming weeks -- here's are a few teasers:

L.E.R. compiled over a dozen Family/Home Logs covering half a century of life in Gardiner.  They include personal notes, local newspaper clippings, family photos, items of national relevance (e.g., a letter of congratulations from the Pulitzer Prize Commission, invitations to the White House from President Roosevelt, celebrations of Julia Ward Howe (L.E.R.'s mother)), and historical touchstones including WWI and Women's Suffrage, among much else.
We will have some on display and others on hand for reference, research, and reverence. 



Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869-1935) grew up and created his first poetical works in Gardiner, Maine.  He self-published his first work, The Torrent & The Night Before, in 1896 (an original is shown here and will be on display).  He went on to earn three Pulitzer Prizes in poetry. 



Saturday, September 3, 2016

What's Happening In The Library



As we roll into fall, school starting, apple picking, falling leaves, etc. etc., I took a few minutes to reflect on how busy we were over the summer months.

And it has been a busy summer here at the Gardiner Public Library.  We had 18,793 people walk through our doors. That’s up from 16,489 last summer between June 1st and August 31st.  735 people attended 59 different programs in 2016.  That’s up as well – 683 people attended programs during the summer of 2015.  I wish I could give you accurate statistics about the Summer Reading Programs – both children’s and young adult – but I don’t currently have access to those figures.  From my perspective at the Adult Circulation Desk, I will say that there were definitely many more Young Adult participants this year!

So, what will we be doing this fall?  We have a variety of events in the offing.  Local author, Anne Valley is offering a journaling class – More Joy, Less Stress – journaling for perspective, peace and prosperity.  This is a six week class, on Tuesday mornings from 10:00am to 12:30pm, beginning Tuesday, September 6th.  Registration is limited, but there are still a few spaces available.  Give us a call to reserve your spot – 207-582-3312.

Miss Jenn and the Nutrition Detectives will be here for Story Time & Crafts on Tuesday, September 13th.  Join us then with your little one to learn more about good nutrition!

Tuesday, September 13th begins an eight week series – Voices of the Kennebec.  Over the eight weeks we will host several local authors, as well as a writing workshop.  Please join us on September 13th, from 7:00pm – 8:30pm as we welcome Gay Grant discussing hometown Pulitzer Prize winners Laura E. Richards, Edwin Arlington Robinson, and Robert Peter Tristram Coffin.

In October we are planning another ghost story event.  Thursday, October 27th from 6:30pm to 8:00pm we will host our community in recalling local ghost stories.  If you have a story to share, please email Kelly at hauntedgardiner@yahoo.com and she will gladly add your story to her collection.

Don’t forget – Story Time and Crafts every Tuesday from 10:00am – 11:00am, and Babies Love Babies every Friday from 10:00am – 11:00am in the Children’s Room!

We also have two different book discussion groups that meet monthly.  The Paranormal group meets the first Tuesday of the month, and our more literary group meets the third or fourth Tuesday of the month.  Each of these groups meet from 6:00pm – 7:00pm.

Fall is still young, and I’m sure we will add several events as we discover them.  Keep your eyes open to posters in and around Gardiner, and we’ll see you in the library!

Ann Russell, Technology Librarian