Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Top 5 Books and Recorded Books on the Hotlist - 6/26/2007

Here's a list of the current top five most reserved items at Lincoln City Libraries, as of 6/26/2007. Click through the titles to place your own hold on any of them, directly in our catalog, or visit the Hotlist page to see the top 15!:

1. Lean Mean Thirteen by Janet Evanovich
2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
3. The Quickie by James Patterson
4. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
5. High Noon by Nora Roberts

Here's a little something you won't even find on the BookGuide site at Lincoln City Libraries -- a list of the Top 5 most-reserved Record Books (either CD or Audiotape format) in our online catalog:

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (on CD)
2. Lean Mean Thirteen by Janet Evanovich (on CD)
3. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (on CD)
4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (on Audiotape)
5. Tin Roof Blowdown by James Lee Burke (on CD)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Brand New Booklist -- Murder With a Green Thumb

Murder with a Green Thumb

I accuse Major Mallory, in the arboretum, with the hoe! No, no, no! It was Mrs. Phillips in the rose garden with a deadly dose of herbicide!

No matter "who done it", there's little question that the gardening mystery has become so popular. Nearly everyone has spent some time tilling the soil, planting their perennials and cursing the weeds that attempt to take over their garden plots. Throw in the menacing plots of your fellow human beings, and the Garden becomes a prime location for deadly deeds. Whether you're interested in historical gardening mysteries, like those solved by herbalist and medieval monk Brother Cadfael, or contemporaries, such as the stories featuring herb shop owner China Bayles or landscape designer Celia Grant, you should find something to fertilize your fancy. So, plant yourself on a garden bench, and kick back with some Gardening Mysteries! Oh, and watch out for that stranger with the weed whacker!

Check out the new list of Gardening Mystery Fiction at BookGuide!

Sneaking the ending of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows?!?

Less than a month now and counting for the release (July 21st) of the final Harry Potter volume, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Don't forget...You can place an advance reserve on the book, book-on-CD or book-on-audiotape formats in our online catalog!

USA Today and others have been reporting on the efforts by many on the internet to release "spoilers" about the final book, whether the spoiler information is accurate or not.

What do you think about this trend, and will it affect your interest in reading the book, one way or another?

How high is your interest in this upcoming book?

Thursday, June 21, 2007

KFOR Book Chat selections - 6/21/2007

Library staff appeared on a Book Chat episode of Problems & Solutions on KFOR this morning.

Here's a list of the books discussed:

The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Anna Brasheres
Summer: A User's Guide by Suzanne Brown
Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
The Ninth Life of Louis Drax by Liz Jensen
Dedication by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn
The Not-So-Big Life: Making Room for What Really Matters by Sarah Suzanka
Inventing the Victorians : [what we think we know about them and why we're wrong] by Matthew Sweet

You can read descriptive blurbs about the books at the BookGuide site on The KFOR Book Chats page.


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

June 2007 BookGuide Bulletin now available

The June 2007 issue of the BookGuide bulletin was sent to subscribers as a pdf via e-mail this afternoon. You can also find it on the Newsletters page on the BookGuide site:

BookGuide Bulletin archive


June 2007 BookGuide Bulletin now available

The June 2007 issue of the BookGuide bulletin was sent to subscribers as a pdf via e-mail this afternoon. You can also find it on the Newsletters page on the BookGuide site:

BookGuide Bulletin archive


Monday, June 18, 2007

2007 One Book -- One Lincoln finalists announced!

The five finalists for this year's One Book -- One Lincoln have now been announced! For detailed descriptions, we encourage you to click through to our One Book -- One Lincoln page:

by Alan Brennert

This richly imagined novel, set in Hawai'i more than a century ago, is an extraordinary epic of a little-known time and place -- and a deeply moving testament to the resiliency of the human spirit. Rachel Kalama, a spirited seven-year-old Hawaiian girl, dreams of visiting far-off lands like her father, a merchant seaman. Then one day a rose-colored mark appears on her skin, and those dreams are stolen from her. Taken from her home and family, Rachel is sent to Kalaupapa, the quarantined leprosy settlement on the island of Moloka'i. Here her life is supposed to end -- but instead she discovers it is only just beginning. With a vibrant cast of vividly realized characters, Moloka'i is the true-to-life chronicle of a people who embraced life in the face of death. Such is the warmth, humor, and compassion of this novel that few readers will remain unchanged by Rachel's story.

The Madonnas of Leningrad
by Debra Dean

In the fall of 1941, the German army approached the outskirts of Leningrad, signaling the beginning of what would become a long and torturous siege. During the ensuing months, the city's inhabitants would brave starvation and the bitter cold, all while fending off the constant German onslaught. Marina, then a tour guide at the Hermitage Museum, along with other staff members, was instructed to take down the museum's priceless masterpieces for safekeeping, yet leave the frames hanging empty on the walls - a symbol of the artworks' eventual return. To hold on to sanity when the Luftwaffe's bombs began to fall, she burned to memory, brushstroke by brushstroke, these exquisite artworks: the nude figures of women, the angels, the serene Madonnas that had so shortly before gazed down upon her. She used them to furnish a "memory palace," a personal Hermitage in her mind to which she retreated to escape terror, hunger, and encroaching death. A refuge that would stay buried deep within her, until she needed it once more. Moving back and forth in time between the Soviet Union and contemporary America, The Madonnas of Leningrad is a portrait of war and remembrance, of the power of love, memory, and art to offer beauty, grace, and hope in the face of overwhelming despair.

The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dustbowl
by Timothy Egan

The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since. Timothy Egan's critically acclaimed account rescues this iconic chapter of American history from the shadows in a tour de force of historical reportage. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones. Brilliantly capturing the terrifying drama of catastrophe, Egan does equal justice to the human characters who become his heroes, "the stoic, long-suffering men and women whose lives he opens up with urgency and respect" (New York Times). In an era that promises ever-greater natural disasters, The Worst Hard Time is "arguably the best nonfiction book yet" (Austin Statesman Journal) on the greatest environmental disaster ever to be visited upon our land and a powerful cautionary tale about the dangers of trifling with nature.

Water for Elephants
by Sara Gruen

Though he may not speak of them, the memories still dwell inside Jacob Jankowski's ninety-something-year-old mind. Memories of himself as a young man, tossed by fate onto a rickety train that was home to the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. Memories of a world filled with freaks and clowns, with wonder and pain and anger and passion; a world with its own narrow, irrational rules, its own way of life, and its own way of death. The world of the circus: to Jacob it was both salvation and a living hell. Jacob was there because his luck had run out - orphaned and penniless, he had no direction until he landed on this locomotive "ship of fools." It was the early part of the Great Depression, and everyone in this third-rate circus was lucky to have any job at all. Marlena, the star of the equestrian act, was there because she fell in love with the wrong man, a handsome circus boss with a wide mean streak. And Rosie the elephant was there because she was the great gray hope, the new act that was going to be the salvation of the circus; the only problem was, Rosie didn't have an act - in fact, she couldn't even follow instructions. The bond that grew among this unlikely trio was one of love and trust, and ultimately, it was their only hope for survival.

If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things
by Jon McGregor

This is a prose poem of a novel with a mystery at its center, which keeps the reader in suspense until the final page. In a tour de force that could be described as Altmanesque, we are invited into the private lives of the residents of a quiet urban street in England over the course of a single day. In delicate, intricately observed closeup, we witness the hopes, fears, and unspoken despairs of a diverse community: the man with painfully scarred hands who tried in vain to save his wife from a burning house and who must now care for his young daughter alone; a group of young clubgoers just home from an all-night rave, sweetly high and mulling over vague dreams; the nervous young man at number 18 who collects weird urban junk and is haunted by the specter of unrequited love. The tranquility of the street is shattered at day's end when a terrible accident occurs.

Comments or thoughts on the finalists, or this year's One Book -- One Lincoln process, anyone?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Little bit of delayed news -- Nebula Winners announced in May

This news is a bit delayed, but only by a few weeks -- The Nebula Award winners were announced by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America at their annual Nebula Awards banquet in early May.

Winner of Best Novel was Jack McDevitt for Seeker.

Winner of the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy was Justine Larbalestier for Magic or Madness.

Winners of the award for best script were Hayao Miyazaki, Cindy Davis Hewitt, and Donald H. Hewitt for Howl's Moving Castle.

Other winners in short fiction categories, as well as commentaries by the authors, are available at the SFWA website.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Recent Reads You Just Couldn't Put Down?

Here's a discussion thread for all the readers who are coming to the new Blogs from our old Book Lovers Discussion Forum.

What have you read recently that you just could put down, and why?

The reasons could be good or bad...the book could've been a white-knuckles thriller or an intensely thought-provoking drama. Let us know what caught your attention!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Book Trading or Sharing sites

The increasing popularity of social networking web sites associated with book collectors prompts us to share the following list of sites you might want to investigate, if you've got more books than you know what to do with (and you don't want to donate them to the library!):

BookCrossing -- read, write a review, then leave your books for others to find, either at random locations or any of a network of pre-established "Crossing Zones". Then, via a bookplate label with an identifying number and the web address of BookCrossing, you can encourage other readers to go online and leave comments about your book...and help you track its travels worldwide.

PaperbackBookSwap -- join other readers who share books (both paperback and hardback) with one another, just for the cost of postage.

BookMooch -- set up a list of books you want, post a list of books you have, then trade with others.

What'sOnMyBookshelf? -- similar to BookMooch, plus "tag" the books in your collection to assist you in connecting with other readers with similar interests.

Bookins -- Make your books available and find other people's books, all for a flat-rate postal delivery fee.

What do you think about any of these...or do you have some other favorites to share?

Waiting for Thirteen...

So...there are over 300 reserves placed on Lean Mean Thirteen already, and we're only about a week away from its release date. Anybody want to share their thoughts on the Stephanie Plum series while we're all waiting for the latest installment?

What do you want to see in this new volume?

Top 5 Recorded Books on the Hotlist at BookGuide

The following are the top five (with some ties) most-reserved Recorded Books on the Hotlist of the BookGuide site at Lincoln City Libraries as of 6/11/2007:

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (on CD)

2. (tie) Lean Mean Thirteen by Janet Evanovich (on CD)
2. (tie) A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (on CD)

3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (on Audiotape)

4. Tin Roof Blowdown by James Lee Burke (on CD)

5. The Good Husband of Zebra Drive by Alexander McCall-Smith (on CD)

Top 5 on the Hotlist!

Here's a list of the current top five most reserved items at Lincoln City Libraries, as of 6/11/2007. Click through the titles to place your own hold on any of them, directly in our catalog:

1. Lean Mean Thirteen by Janet Evanovich

2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

3. The Quickie by James Patterson

4. 6th Target by James Patterson

5. High Noon by Nora Roberts

Friday, June 8, 2007

One Book -- One Lincoln countdown to June 18th

For fans of Lincoln's annual One Book -- One Lincoln tradition, the countdown has begun. The five finalists for the 2007 title will be announced in the Lincoln Journal Star and on the library's web site on June 18th. Watch for it!

New from Khaled Hosseini

For readers who appreciated Lincoln's 2005 One Book -- One Lincoln selection, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, you may be interested to see that Hosseini's next book has finally hit bookstore and library shelves.

A Thousand Splendid Suns [2007] is is a breathtaking story set against the volatile events of Afghanistan’s last thirty years—from the Soviet invasion to the reign of the Taliban to the post-Taliban rebuilding—that puts the violence, fear, hope, and faith of this country in intimate, human terms. It is a tale of two generations of characters brought jarringly together by the tragic sweep of war, where personal lives—the struggle to survive, raise a family, find happiness—are inextricable from the history playing out around them.

Propelled by the same storytelling instinct that made The Kite Runner a beloved classic, A Thousand Splendid Suns is at once a remarkable chronicle of three decades of Afghan history and a deeply moving account of family and friendship. It is a striking, heart-wrenching novel of an unforgiving time, an unlikely friendship, and an indestructible love—a stunning accomplishment. -- from the book jacket

Oprah's latest pick - Middlesex

Oprah Winfrey announced the selection of her latest Book Club title (for the summer of 2007) a few days ago -- the somewhat controversial book Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides.

Here's the jacket blurb:
"I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day of January 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of l974. . . My birth certificate lists my name as Calliope Helen Stephanides. My most recent driver’s license...records my first name simply as Cal."

So begins the breathtaking story of Calliope Stephanides and three generations of the Greek-American Stephanides family who travel from a tiny village overlooking Mount Olympus in Asia Minor to Prohibition-era Detroit, witnessing its glory days as the Motor City, and the race riots of l967, before they move out to the tree-lined streets of suburban Grosse Pointe, Michigan. To understand why Calliope is not like other girls, she has to uncover a guilty family secret and the astonishing genetic history that turns Callie into Cal, one of the most audacious and wondrous narrators in contemporary fiction. Lyrical and thrilling, Middlesex is an exhilarating reinvention of the American epic.

Spanning eight decades and chronicling the wild ride of a Greek-American family through the vicissitudes of the twentieth century, Jeffrey Eugenides? witty, exuberant novel on one level tells a traditional story about three generations of a fantastic, absurd, lovable immigrant family -- blessed and cursed with generous doses of tragedy and high comedy.

But there's a provocative twist. Cal, the narrator -- also Callie -- is a hermaphrodite. And the explanation for this takes us spooling back in time, through a breathtaking review of the twentieth century, to 1922, when the Turks sacked Smyrna and Callie?s grandparents fled for their lives. Back to a tiny village in Asia Minor where two lovers, and one rare genetic mutation, set our narrator?s life in motion.

Middlesex is a grand, utterly original fable of crossed bloodlines, the intricacies of gender, and the deep, untidy promptings of desire. It?s a brilliant exploration of divided people, divided families, divided cities and nations -- the connected halves that make up ourselves and our world. Justly acclaimed when it was released in Fall 2002, it announces the arrival of a major writer for our times.

So what do people think of this book?

Cannell and Evanovich team up?

Has anybody read anything -- details please -- about one of my favorite authors, Stephen J. Cannell, teaming up with mega-best-selling author Janet Evanovich, for a new November collaborative novel?

Amazon page for the book


Mark Harris, r.i.p.

Mark Harris (no not the amphibious character played by Patrick Duffy on Man From Atlantis), author of Bang the Drum Slowly and several other novels and non-fiction titles published between 1946 and 1994, died of complications from Alzheimers Disease in Santa Barbara, CA on May 30, 2007.