Off The Shelves

Twilight: 10 Years Later

We thought we were in the Twilight clear since the release of the last movie was released six years ago, didn’t we? However, this year is the tenth anniversary of the release of the movie Twilight, which came about three years after the first book in the series was published. And while I will never recommend reading Twilight for literary purposes, the series still makes me a bit nostalgic. Ten years ago, I was a freshman in high school; I was the perfect age and in the perfect place for all of the hype that suddenly surrounded the books and movies, and, boy, did I fangirl hard.

The Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer is nothing short of problematic in all kinds of areas, but when you’re fourteen, it seems like the greatest love story ever told. I wasn’t thinking about how accurate the representation of certain cultures were in the novel, or that Bella Swan might have been suffering from Stockholm Syndrome a little bit; I was too busy trying to decide if I was Team Edward or Team Jacob, like 75% of my high school (For the record, I was Team Edward). For me, the series is definitely something to cringe about now, but it will always have a special place on the bottom of my bookshelf because I still can’t bring myself to get rid of them.

I’ve heard the Twilight series compared to the Harry Potter series in that the books got kids (and adults) reading. My philosophy has always been that it doesn’t matter what you’re reading as long as you’re reading something, because if you’re reading, you’re learning. My little sister recently discovered Twilight and is currently devouring the series as fast as she can. While I want to recommend other books to her, with more powerful female characters, diverse characters, and accurate representation of various cultures, I’m stopping myself because I’m just glad she’s reading. And I’m glad that she’s enjoying what she’s reading, too. Who am I to dictate what people should be reading? Who am I to judge them based on their reading preferences?

I will gladly congratulate the Twilight movie franchise on its tenth anniversary, as well as the book series for getting people to read. It can even be argued that Twilight helped popularize the paranormal subgenre in teen, young adult, and adult fiction, which is still one of the most checked out subgenres from our shelves to this day.

So enjoy reading or rereading Twilight and watching the movies in honor of the anniversary! And don’t let anyone tell you anything different!

Happy Reading!

Oversized Nonfiction

At the Aurora branch, there is a special section upstairs for various oversized nonfiction books that many might have overlooked. These books have to be shelved separately from books over similar topics because they don’t fit on our regular shelves, so you’ll find a wide variety of topics included in this small section that encompass the nonfiction library as a whole. These books are so large that you’ll feel like a miniature person holding a giant-sized book from some kind of fairy tale!

The catch: you won’t be able to search the oversized nonfiction shelf from the catalog but instead will have to make an old-fashioned trip to the physical shelf to peruse.

But it’s so easy to lose yourself in the stack because these books are filled with large, glossy pages of photographs and information on all topics, ranging from animals and bugs to history and biographies. Something is bound to peak your interest!

Are you interested in panoramic views and photography? What about songbooks that are big enough that you won’t have to squint while you’re playing or singing? How about books on travel with full color-spreads that let you see every detail of the places you aspire to go? Do you like history and are interested in viewing photographs events like World War II and the September 11 terrorist attacks? What about ancient history? Do you like flipping through ancient timelines and seeing photographs of ancient relics? We have books over these subjects and more in the oversized nonfiction section!

Maybe you enjoy working with your hands and crafting? You’ll find titles about jewelry-making, art, sculpture, decor, style, design, paper-making, and how to make rugs and wall hangings. What about movies and movie trivia? Or sports like baseball, curling, the Olympics, and NASCAR? There’s bound to be something for you!

The next time you visit the Aurora branch, head on upstairs and make your way to the west wing, where we keep the magazines and community center. As you turn right when you come up the stairs, you’ll find the Oversized Nonfiction section to your right, right behind the last magazine shelves. Or just stop by the desk for directions!

Happy Reading!

Nonfiction 618.2: When You’re Expecting

There’s something in the water at the Aurora Public Library District! A few employees here are pregnant or are closely related to someone who is expecting! While we all know the Internet is an amazing and vast source of information, you might not always know how credible the articles and websites are that you’re browsing. This is where the Library comes in! If you find yourself expecting in the near future, or feel like you need to research before you make a decision to conceive, stop in and browse our collection!

To start, head over to the nonfiction section at either the Aurora or Dillsboro branches and find the call number 618.2 (You’ll find numbers on the spines of books shelved in nonfiction, which lets us know where they fit in the Dewey Decimal System.). In this section, you’ll find all sorts of books providing information about pregnancy, birth, multiples, eating right, exercising, and more, including the popular What To Expect When You’re Expecting series. You’ll also find books for the expectant father!

Generally books of similar subjects are shelved near to each other, so if you browse that area for awhile, you’ll be sure to find what you’re looking for. But if you don’t see the specific title you want, let one of the staff members know so we can help you, whether it’s by searching the shelves with you, putting in an Interlibrary Loan request, or putting in a Collection Request to obtain the title ourselves. Remember, we are here to help you!

If you’re already experiencing the fatigue and morning sickness that come with pregnancy, be sure to browse OverDrive for digital copies of these books and more all from the comfort of your home. All you’ll need is your library card and pin number handy to log in, and if you aren’t sure what your pin number is, just give one of our branches a call to reset it. It’s all about what’s convenient for you!

We also have several books on nursery decoration to help you with that decision, as well as the Big One: Naming the Baby. These books are shelved in different locations, so be sure to stop by the desk for assistance.

This is a joyous time for most expecting parents, but it can also be one of the most stressful times. Let the Aurora Public Library District ease that stress for you a little!

Congratulations and Happy Reading!

Spook-tacular Titles for Halloween

It’s getting spookier and spookier as Halloween draws closer, from classic scary movies and ghost hunting shows clogging up the TV, to orange-and-black-packaged candy going on sale, to the decorations and costume ideas beginning to crowd your social media feeds. What better way is there to get you in the mood for Halloween than to check out some books about real-life haunted houses and ghost stories?

Check out these spook-tacular titles:

Haunted Indiana by Mark Marimen

Ghost Hunter’s Guide to Haunted Ohio by Chris Woodyard

Eerie Haunted Places by Molly Kolpin

Haunted Hotels Around the World by Megan Cooley Peterson

Grave’s End: A True Ghost Story by Elaine Mercado

Timeless Towns and Haunted Places by J.R. Humphreys

Hoosier Folk Legends by Ronald L. Baker

Haunts: Five Hair-Raising Tales by Angela Shelf Medearis

Haunting Urban Legends by Megan Cooley Peterson

Seeking Spirits by Jason Hawes

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Ghosts and Hauntings by Tom Ogden 

Monster Hunters: On the Trail with Ghost Hunters, Bigfooters, Ufologists, and Other Paranormal Investigators by Tea Krulos

When Ghosts Speak: Understanding the World of Earthbound Spirits by Mary Ann Winkowski

Don’t forget to check out OverDrive for even more creepy titles. And if you’d rather watch a scary movie, the Aurora Public Library District has got you covered there, too! Still can’t get enough? Ask for recommendations for horror fiction. There are several staff members on hand who would love to point you in the right direction!

Happy Reading!

Now on Netflix: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

First published in 2008, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society has made its way to the small, streaming screen of Netflix just this year. I noticed it when I was scrolling through, looking for something to watch, and knew I had to read the book first before I watched the movie. I’m annoying like that.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows takes place just after the end of World War II in 1946. Parts of London remain piles of rubble and people still wait for loved ones to return from the prison camps they were sent to overseas. The war in its entire horror has not yet been realized by the characters, but life still goes on. Juliet Ashton is engaged in a cross-country tour of England, promoting the book she wrote under her pen name, Izzy Bickerstaff. The book is a compilation of the columns she wrote about life during World War II, and despite the success of it, Juliet wishes to retire her pen name and write something of substance under her own name.

While trying to come up with a book idea of her own, Juliet receives a letter from Dawsey Adams, a complete stranger, who lives on the island of Guernsey and has come into possession of her old copy of Essays of Elia by Charles Lamb. Dawsey requests more information about the author and any other information and news Juliet can give him since the Nazis cut off all communication with the world outside of the island for five years during the German Occupation. Dawsey also mentions that he’s a part of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, which immediately piques Juliet’s interest. Thus begins a correspondence between Juliet, Dawsey, and other members of the society and their adventures during the war.

The premise of the novel itself is unique, but so is the epistolary format in which it is told. In other words, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is told completely in letters between the various characters, making it a super quick and entertaining read. The Netflix film features big-ticket names like Lily James, Michiel Huisman, Glen Powell, Jessica Brown Findlay, Katherine Parkinson, Matthew Goode, Tom Courtenay, and Penelope Wilton. I can’t wait to see it! (And compare/contrast/dissect every way in which the book is different; I’m annoying like that.)

Happy Reading! (And Watching!)

Want or Need a Book We Don’t Have?

Both the Aurora Public Library and the Dillsboro Public Library have hundreds of books combined. Though our collection is quite extensive and filled with every kind of book, there’s no possible way to have every single book in the world ever published. So thankfully we have a service called Inter-library loan.

Our ILL service gives our members access to a much wider range of materials than normally possible.

 

WHO CAN USE OUR ILL SERVICE?

Any patron in good standing who has a membership that includes borrowing privileges.

 

WHAT CAN BE BORROWED?

Books, audio-books, movies, seasons, etc.

 

WHAT’S THE COST?

If we can get the item from within our state, there isn’t a charge!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Occasionally, we won’t be able to find an item and in this case any item received from out of state will carry a postage charge that depends on the material’s size and its weight. You are able to specify whether you’d like to avoid charges at the time of your request.

 

BEFORE PLACING A REQUEST:

If the desired material is part of our Library’s current collection, we will not borrow it from another library.

However, if we have a title in Large Print and you would like it to be in regular print, we are able to borrow the title that way. As well as wishing for a title that is in regular print in large print.

If the material is less than six months old, many libraries will not lend it out. In many cases, we will add the material to our collection request.

*A collection request is a database we keep for any books that you wish for the library to purchase that is newer than six months old. We may or may not purchase the material depending on a vary of reasons.

Many ILL’s will take 7-14 business days to arrive, if you need the material sooner than that, it may be wise to consider another alternative.

 

CHECKING OUT YOUR ILL:

When your loan has arrived, you will receive a notification from your preferred method (normally a phone call).

If you do receive a material from out of state, a charge will be placed on your account with an explanation.

Just like any other item within our collection, you will be responsible to return your item.

Late fees may apply.

 

AM I ABLE TO RENEW?

Occasionally, a library will allow a renewal. If you are in need of a renewal, please contact the Aurora Library or the Dillsboro Library before the date your item is due.

We can give up to a week renewal while waiting for a reply back from the current lending library.

 

RETURNING MY ILL:

Because the materials are owned by other Libraries, it is important to return the materials in a timely manner. The due dates are generally determined by the lending library and can be as long as a month or as short as two weeks. Any fines/fees due to the material being returned late will be determined by the lending library and will be charged to you.

 

If you know exactly what item you would like, you are more than welcome to fill out our form on our website or come in or call either branch to request an ILL today!

 

If you request a DVD, the DVD will not count towards our DVD limit.  This is the same for TV shows, as well.

Example: You request Lady Bird, and we receive the DVD from another library. You can still also check out two other DVD’s from our library.

 

 

Series Starters: Crazy Rich Asians

Unless you live under a rock, you’ve probably heard the whole world buzzing about the new movie, Crazy Rich Asians, which is based on the first book in the Crazy Rich Asians series by Kevin Kwan. The movie is the first film by a major Hollywood studio to feature a majority Asian cast in a modern setting since The Joy Luck Club in 1993, which is also based off of a book by the same name by Amy Tan. The movie has been breaking barriers and setting records since its release into theaters in the United States in August, and I was so excited when I found out that it was based on a series of young adult novels. (Apparently I had been living under a rock during the release of this series…)

New York native Rachel Chu agrees to spend the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young, anticipating meeting his family for the first time while spending quality time together at his family’s home. Despite Rachel’s assurance that Nick is The One, he might have left out a few minor details about his life in Singapore; namely, that he grew up in what is practically a palace and rode in more private planes than cars with a family who is more than wealthy. Oh, and he is also Singapore’s most eligible bachelor, painting a target on Rachel’s back the second she steps off the plane. Her vacation quickly turns into a war between old money, new money, nosy relatives, and scheming social climbers.

This series will not disappoint if you love drama, romance, and all-consuming books that you won’t be able to put down. We have hard copies available as well as digital copies available from OverDrive. But you better hurry to put your name on the hold list because this series is super popular right now!

Representation is extremely important not only in the media, but in the mainstream media. With all the buzz from the movie, how could we not mention the books, too? Let me know what you think!

Happy Reading!

Cooking with Kids Around the World

September 13 is National Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day! Sometimes it can be hard to let go and let your little ones have free range anywhere, much less the kitchen where there are sharp knives, fire, and other dangerous items. The Aurora Public Library District has plenty of physical and digital copies of books to get your kids cooking with minimal supervision on your part!

Studies have shown that letting your kids help you out in the kitchen will make them more likely to eat what you put in front of them, including vegetables! So, if you do find yourself in the Library, here are some books you can check out for your kids to help make dishes from around the world:

If your family loves eating out but hates the bill afterward, try these cookbooks with your favorite ethnic recipes that you and your little chef can make right at home:

 

If you can’t stop in the library, be sure to check out a kid-friendly cookbook from OverDrive. You can prop your iPad, tablet, or smartphone up and cook straight from there! Let us know what you make!

Happy Eating! And Reading!

The Grey Bastards (The Lot Lands #1)

This debut novel by Johnathan French is truly a book no fantasy  lover should miss, if Lord of the Rings and Son’s of Anarchy could have a baby it would be The Grey Bastards.

LIVE IN THE SADDLE. DIE ON THE HOG. 

Such is the creed of the half-orcs dwelling in the Lot Lands. Sworn to hardened brotherhoods known as hoofs, these former slaves patrol their unforgiving country astride massive swine bred for war. They are all that stand between the decadent heart of noble Hispartha and marauding bands of full-blood orcs.

Jackal rides with the Grey Bastards, one of eight hoofs that have survived the harsh embrace of the Lots. Young, cunning and ambitious, he schemes to unseat the increasingly tyrannical founder of the Bastards, a plague-ridden warlord called the Claymaster. Supporting Jackal’s dangerous bid for leadership are Oats, a hulking mongrel with more orc than human blood, and Fetching, the only female rider in all the hoofs.

When the troubling appearance of a foreign sorcerer comes upon the heels of a faceless betrayal, Jackal’s plans are thrown into turmoil. He finds himself saddled with a captive elf girl whose very presence begins to unravel his alliances. With the anarchic blood rite of the Betrayer Moon close at hand, Jackal must decide where his loyalties truly lie, and carve out his place in a world that rewards only the vicious.

”The first Grey Bastards were potters, named not for our skin, but from the dry clay which covered it. We knew fire and heat and mud, until the day we rode into battle on the backs of hogs that knew only the yoke of a supply wagon. That day we became warriors. We were carving a path to freedom, though we didn’t know it then. Carving it with swords fallen from the hands of our fleeing masters, carving it through the flesh of our orc fathers.”

 

 

Kill the Farm Boy: The Tales of Pell

In an irreverent new series in the tradition of Monty Python, the bestselling authors of the Iron Druid Chronicles and Star Wars: Phasma reinvent fantasy, fairy tales, and floridly written feast scenes.

In this pun-laden quest, first in a trilogy, Hearne (A Plague of Giants) and Dawson (Star Wars: Phasma) skewer the traditional tropes of epic fantasy sagas. Though the field is already rife with parodies and satires, the authors execute their own unique twist by killing off the titular farm boy on page 31 before his hero’s journey can ever truly begin. Now it’s up to a ragtag band of unlikely heroes—including a seven-foot-tall horticulturalist in a chainmail bikini, a cursed half-rabbit bard, a bread-conjuring would-be dark lord, a clumsy rogue, and a boot-eating talking goat—to save the kingdom from magical misdeeds. As they face their greatest childhood fears, contend with gourmand giants, and negotiate with arrogant elves, these improbable heroes display surprising depths and complexities. There’s a Pratchettian humor at play here, manifesting in frequent pun wars, silly songs, and an underlying level of societal absurdity—everyone takes cheese rather seriously, for instance. The authors claim they wanted to make fun of the typical “white male power fantasies,” and in that, they succeed, with their heroes all characters of color and/or falling somewhere under the LGBTQ umbrella. Even so, there’s the feeling that they’re marching through familiar, previously conquered territory, putting this solidly in the middle of the field of humorous fantasy. If you are a fan of The Princess Bride by William Goldman or the Last Unicorn you will undoubtedly laugh out loud as you read this epic adventure.

About Kill the Farm Boy

“Ranks among the best of Christopher Moore and Terry Pratchett.”—Chuck Wendig

“When you put two authors of this high caliber together, expect fireworks. Or at least laughs. What a hoot!”—New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks

This masterpiece of fun, farcical, fantasy fiction can be found on both the IDDC and the library shelves.