Musings

Here Be Dragons

What kid (or adult) doesn’t like dragons? Our collection of chapter books for kids is full of dragon adventures, including several on-going series.

Two of our most popular “dragon” authors are Tracey West and Tui Sutherland.

The Dragon Masters series by Tracey West begins with Rise of the Earth Dragon and Saving the Sun Dragon. These are relatively short chapter books and are great for kids looking for fast, exciting stories.

Rise of the Earth Dragon by Tracey West  Saving the Sun Dragon by Tracey West

Tui Sutherland is the writer of the Wings of Fire series which started with The Dragonet Prophecy and The Lost Heir. These books have a little higher reading level and would be perfect for 4th grade and up. New books are still being added to both of these series.

The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui Sutherland   The Lost Heir by Tui Sutherland

Many kids are already familiar with the How to Tame Your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell, because of the movies based on the series. The next sequel hits movie theaters in February 2019, so this is a great time to get started with the books.

How to Tame Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell   How to Be a Pirate by Cressida Cowell

Other great dragon series include The Last Dragon Chronicles by Chris D’Lacey and the Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini.

The Fire Within by Chris D'Lacey   Eragon by Christopher Paolini

If you and your family prefer e-books or audio-books, many of these titles are also available in those formats through our Digital Downloads link.

Stephanie Plum Series

 

You’ve lost your job as a department store lingerie buyer, your car’s been repossessed, and most of your furniture and small appliances have been sold off to pay last month’s rent. Now the rent is due again. And you live in New Jersey. What do you do?

If you’re Stephanie Plum, you become a bounty hunter. But not just a nickel-and-dime bounty hunter; you go after the big money. That means a cop gone bad. And not just any cop. She goes after Joe Morelli, a disgraced former vice cop who is also the man who took Stephanie’s virginity at age 16 and then wrote details on a bathroom wall. With pride and rent money on the line, Plum plunges headlong into her first case, one that pits her against ruthless adversaries – people who’d rather kill than lose.

The New York Times Book Review calls Stephanie Plum “a Jersey girl with Bette Midler’s mouth and Cher’s fashion sense.” In Stephanie Plum, Evanovich has created a resourceful and humorous character who stands apart from the pack of gritty female detectives. –Goodreads

Stephanie Plum is a 26 book ongoing series that is filled with just enough romance and laughter to keep you reading on! If you’re a fan of Darynda Jones’ Charley Davidson series and are sad that it’s ended, this is a series for you! If you’re looking for a series to start, look no further!

 

Carpe Librum!

 

PBS Documentaries at the APLD

Who doesn’t like a good documentary every now and then? I’m always itching to get more knowledge! I will be the first to admit that sometimes finding a good documentary is difficult, but the Aurora Public Library is here to hook you up!

We have so many amazing kinds of documentaries on many different subjects that they take up mostly two shelves of our DVDs! PBS has a whole line of documentaries that are appropriate for all ages to enjoy!

If you like history, math, buildings, science, animals, myths, art, and mysteries look no further than PBS Documentaries!

Tutor.com: Learning Suite

The Aurora Public Library District offers many unique resources to our patrons through their library card and through our website. Tutor.com is just one of the many amazing services we offer. This website not only offers homework help and tutoring but test preparation and job search help.

Tutoring Subjects

  1. English
  2. Math*
  3. Science*
  4. Social Studies*
  5. Spanish
  6. Writing

 

Test Preps

  1. ACT Test Prep
  2. AP Test Prep
  3. PSAT Test Prep
  4. SAT Test Prep
  5. Computer Literacy
  6. GED/HISET/TASC

 

Others

  1. Job Search Assistance
  2. Citizenship Test Prep*

 

*Available with bilingual, Spanish-speaking tutors.

 

This website is a great resource to you! It will help you complete schoolwork with tutoring, it will help you build skills with their skills drills; help you write a paper with their WriteTutor Drop-Off Reviews, help you apply to college with expert advice for those hard to do applications or with FAFSA, it helps prepare you for a test with their one-to-one tutoring and self study tools, and it even helps you find a job with their Adult Learning and Job Search Assistance!

 

We hope you take advantage of this great resource today!

Becky’s Favorite Villains and Heroes In Literature

Villains that I LOVE to hate:

Mrs. Danvers in “Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Mrs. Danvers is at the top of my favorite villain list because she is the epitome of creepy. This sinister housekeeper is always lurking around the Manderley estate. Mrs. Danvers has kept a shrine to Maxim de Winter’s deceased first wife Rebecca. She has kept all of Rebecca’s things just as they once were. Mrs. Danvers is determined to keep Rebecca’s memory alive…

Annie Wilkes in “Misery” by Stephen King

Misery by Stephen King

Author Paul Sheldon is driving through a blizzard when he crashes his car. He is extremely lucky to have been rescued by a woman named Annie who is a nurse. Annie is what you could call the ultimate super fan.  Paul soon learns that Annie loves to read and is obsessed with her favorite author…which just happens to be him!

Napoleon in “Animal Farm” by George Orwell

Animal Farm by George Orwell

Napoleon is an interesting character in George Orwell’s Animal Farm. Napoleon becomes the leader after the animals’ rebellion against farmer Jones. Napoleon does some very suspect things such as running off his old friend Snowball and rewriting history to make himself into a hero.

Dorian in “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Dorian Gray is a complicated character.  On the outside, he appears to be a good guy. He is handsome and curiously never ages. Dorian is able to mask his true nature. However, there is something strange about the portrait of Dorian and it reveals a hideous side to Dorian.

 

Every story needs a hero:

Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Atticus Finch’s moral integrity is what stands out for me in this novel. The novel takes place during the Great Depression in the South. Atticus shows courage when he stands up for and defends a black man in court.

Tom Joad in “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

This story is set during the Dust Bowl era of the Great Depression. The character of Tom is an unlikely hero because, as a reader, you are introduced to him as he is getting out of prison for killing a man. He is also a character that makes the most transformation, becoming someone totally different than what you think at the beginning of the novel.

Imogene “Idgie” Threadgoode in “Fried Green Tomatoes” by Fannie Flagg

Fried Green Tomatoes by Fannie Flagg

Fried Green Tomatoes is a favorite of mine. Idgie faces many struggles in her lifetime. The way that she handles situations that arise such as the death of a brother that she idolizes, her best friend Ruth’s violent marriage, and the sexism she experiences during her lifetime is inspiring.

Jo March in “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

I was first introduced to Little Women when I was in middle school. Jo March quickly became one of my favorite characters.  The love that she had for her family and the strength she showed in difficult times is what made me admire this character.

Who are your favorite villains and heroes? We would love for you to share in the comments below.

Happy Reading 🙂

Indiana Digital Download Center: New books arriving in January and February

New titles are coming soon to the Indiana Digital Download center.  

The coming titles are available using the Overdrive app on your smartphone, e reader or your tablet (Kindle or iPad).  If you need help setting this up or you have not used the app before please stop by the Aurora or the Dillsboro library and we would be happy to assist you with setting this up.

The Wartime Sisters A Novel
by Lynda Cohen Loigman
Pre-release: Expected January 22, 2019The Wartime Sisters byLynda Cohen Loigman

This is a tale about two sisters who are at odds with one another.  They are reunited at an Armory during WWII . The sisters are at odds with one another and each of them are living a different life.  One is living the life of an officer’s wife and the other arrives as a war widow. Will someone from their past bring the secrets they are hiding to light?  

A Desperate Hope
Empire State Series, Book 3
by Elizabeth Camden
Pre-release: Expected February 5, 2019

A Desperate Hope by Elizabeth Camden

This novel takes place in 1908.  Eloisa Drake believed she was successful in putting her past behind her.  At a new job Eloisa’s path crosses with the man who broke her heart.

100 Inspirational Quotes
And the Life-Changing Scriptures Behind Them

by Joyce Meyer
Pre-release: Expected February 5, 2019

100 Inspirational Quotes by Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer has more than 40 years in the Christian ministry.  In this book she shares some of her most familiar sayings and the bible verse that inspired them.  This book is aimed at helping you achieve a more peaceful life through God’s word.

The Handwriting on the Wall
Secrets from the Prophecies of Daniel
by Dr. David Jeremiah
Pre-release: Expected February 11, 2020

The Handwriting on the Wall by Dr. David Jeremiah

Dr. David Jeremiah explores the prophecies in the book of Daniel.  Jeremiah takes the prophecies of Daniel and relates them to today’s world.  

Circle of the Moon
Soulwood Series, Book 4
by Faith Hunter
Pre-release: Expected February 26, 2019

Circle of the Moon by Faith Hunter

Nell Ingram is a member of the Psy-Law Enforcement Division that help solve paranormal crimes.  Nell draws her powers from the land around her. When Animals begin turning up dead Nells boss is the prime suspect. Can Nell use her powers to help solve who is behind these animal murders?  

Happy Reading!  🙂

The Huntress: Kate Quinn

I’ve recently read The Alice Network by Kate Quinn and fell in love with her writing. She includes enough history and story that you are left waiting on the edge of your chair, eager to read the rest of the story, but scared to read the rest of the story because you don’t want to finish the story! I’m more than excited to read her newest book, The Huntress, which comes out 2/26/18!

 

In an enthralling historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women—a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947—are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She’s also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie’s parents banish her to Europe to have her “little problem” taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she’s recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she’s trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the “Queen of Spies”, who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy’s nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn’t heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth…no matter where it leads.

 

 

 

From the author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling novel, The Alice Network, comes another fascinating historical novel about a battle-haunted English journalist and a Russian female bomber pilot who join forces to track the Huntress, a Nazi war criminal gone to ground in America.

In the aftermath of war, the hunter becomes the hunted…

Bold, reckless Nina Markova grows up on the icy edge of Soviet Russia, dreaming of flight and fearing nothing. When the tide of war sweeps over her homeland, she gambles everything to join the infamous Night Witches, an all-female night bomber regiment wreaking havoc on Hitler’s eastern front. But when she is downed behind enemy lines and thrown across the path of a lethal Nazi murderess known as the Huntress, Nina must use all her wits to survive.

British war correspondent Ian Graham has witnessed the horrors of war from Omaha Beach to the Nuremberg Trials. He abandons journalism after the war to become a Nazi hunter, yet one target eludes him: the Huntress. Fierce, disciplined Ian must join forces with brazen, cocksure Nina, the only witness to escape the Huntress alive. But a shared secret could derail their mission, unless Ian and Nina force themselves to confront it.

Seventeen-year-old Jordan McBride grows up in post WWII Boston, determined despite family opposition to become a photographer. At first delighted when her long-widowed father brings home a fiancée, Jordan grows increasingly disquieted by the soft-spoken German widow who seems to be hiding something. Armed only with her camera and her wits, Jordan delves into her new stepmother’s past and slowly realizes there are mysteries buried deep in her family. But Jordan’s search for the truth may threaten all she holds dear.

 

I am more than excited to read this second book set in WWII and written by Kate Quinn!

 

Be sure to put your name on hold for your place to check out this book!

 

Carpe Librum!

 

Charley Davidson: A Series

Finally, I’d found a series that I could enjoy and stay entertained with! Darynda Jones‘ Charley Davidson series is the perfect series for romance lovers, mystery lovers, paranormal lovers, and even action lovers! Charley Davidson is the heroine of this beloved series (Of course! It’s named after her!), and she is amazing and kicks butt! Reyes Farrow is her love interest and is drop dead amazing and swoon-worthy! Cookie is her beloved best friend who keeps Charley on her feet! Every character within this series is so amazing and likable that you can’t help but love each and everyone of them, despite their faults!

Private investigator Charlotte Davidson was born with three things: looks; a healthy respect for the male anatomy; and the rather odd job title of grim reaper. Since the age of five, she has been helping the departed solve the mysteries of their deaths so they can cross. Charley’s dealing with a being more powerful – and definitely sexier – than any spectre she’s ever come across before. With the help of a nuisance skip tracer, a dead pubescent gang member named Angel, and a lifetime supply of sarcasm, Charley sets out to solve the highest profile case of the year and discovers that dodging bullets isn’t nearly as dangerous as falling in love. –Goodreads

Darynda Jones makes it her mission in writing to portray Charley as human, even though she’s supernatural, Charley makes mistakes and suffers with the same things that anyone would–all while the dead pass through her! She struggles with her life and everything she goes through in the series, that it’s sometimes hard to read her describe how she feels. Though, Darynda Jones will make anyone laugh! Charley is a hilarious and unique character that stays the same beloved person through the whole series!

If you enjoy Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum Series, then Charley Davidson should be your next series to read! There’s twelve books out and the thirteenth and final book comes out this January! Be on the look out!!!

Become an Armchair Traveler

The long nights and gloomy weather of January and February always make me dream of being someplace else. Winter is a perfect time to snuggle up in a comfortable chair and read about exotic locales. Whether you are planning your next trip or just wanting to live vicariously, these titles are just what you need to satisfy your wanderlust. The books shown below are all published in the last ten years, but you can’t go wrong with older books by authors like Paul Theroux or Bill Bryson.

Starting in Asia, here’s a quick trip around the world in recent travel books. There are many wonderful books out there, so if we don’t have what you want to read, be sure to let us know!

Walking the Kiso Road by William Scott Wilson

Wild by Nature by Sarah Marquis

 

Learn about a historic route through the mountains of Japan in Walking the Kiso Road : a Modern-Day Exploration of Old Japan by William Scott Wilson.

 

Fans of Wild by Cheryl Strayed will enjoy Wild by Nature, a memoir about one woman’s hike across the Gobi Desert.

 

 

 

To the Moon and Timbuktu by Nina SovichItalian Ways by Tim Parks

Trips do not always proceed according to plan, but Nina Sovich persists in To the Moon and  Timbuktu: a Trek through the Heart of Africa.

There’s just something magical about traveling by train. Experience the beauty of Italy in Italian Ways : On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo by Tim Parks. For a classic railway book, try Ghost Train to the Eastern Star : On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux.

 

 

 

The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill BrysonWalking the Americas by Levison Wood

 

You may know Bill Bryson best from A Walk in the Woods, a memoir about hiking the Appalachian Trial. In Road to Little Dribbling, Bryson rediscovers the joys of  Britain.

 

Hop back across the Atlantic for three books that explore Central and South America.

 

 

 

The Wonder Trail by Steve Hely

All Roads Lead to Austen by Amy Elizabeth Smith

 

In her travels through Latin America, Amy Elizabeth Smith uses the universal appreciation of Jane Austen to explore the themes that unite us across cultures.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s time to head north with The Longest Road by Philip Caputo. Ride along in his aging pickup as he drives all the way from Key West to the Arctic Circle.

One last epic adventure awaits in Kings of the Yukon : One Summer Paddling Across the Far North by Adam Weymouth.

Happy traveling!

 

 

Smithsonian Exhibit Coming to Dillsboro Branch Library

The Aurora Public Library District received exciting news recently—we have been selected to host a Smithsonian Institution Museum on Main Street exhibit at our Dillsboro Branch location. The exhibit will be open for viewing whenever the Dillsboro Library is open, between September 7, 2019 and October 20, 2019. It is particularly exciting to us, as we are one of only six locations in the state of Indiana to be hosting the exhibit and the only public library among the six.

The mission of Museum on Main Street is to provide access to the Smithsonian for small-town America. This exhibit, entitled Crossroads: Change in Rural America, will include interactive displays exploring the themes of community, identity, land use, and managing change. The Library District will be adding local content and will be hosting programs of local interest during the six-week period. There will be lots of work to do before we will be ready for the exhibit, but we will share the progress over the next several months. As the time grows nearer, we will also share more information about the exciting programs that will be offered in conjunction with the exhibit.