Archive | Reviews & Recommendations

Got Audiobooks? (Your Library Does!)

Got Audiobooks? (Your Library Does!)

elizabeth enjoying audiobooks

The library is delighted to announce that we now have audiobooks that you can check out!

Our collection, offering a range of choices for listeners age 11-18 and beyond, is with the ebooks in Overdrive. If you want to see which of our audiobooks are recommended for someone your age, check out our Pinterest board.

If you are not an audiobook devotee already, you might be wondering what there is to get excited about. Click on a cover below to take a listen to some samples from our collection and find out:

William Shakespeare's Star Wars: Verily, A New Hope (Gr. 8+) Full Cast Reading

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars: Verily, A New Hope (Gr. 8+) Full Cast Reading

The Night Circus (Adult for young adult) Reader: Jim Dale

The Night Circus (Adult for young adult) Reader: Jim Dale

The Graveyard Book (Gr 5-8) Readers: Tim Dann and Neil Gaiman

The Graveyard Book (Gr 5-8) Readers: Tim Dann and Neil Gaiman

 

Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy (Gr. 6+) Reader: Katherine Kellgren

Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary “Jacky” Faber, Ship’s Boy (Gr. 6+) Reader: Katherine Kellgren

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (Gr. 9+) Reader: Lin-Manuel Miranda

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (Gr. 9+) Reader: Lin-Manuel Miranda

How It Went Down (Gr 9+) Full Cast Reading

How It Went Down (Gr 9+) Full Cast Reading

Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War (Gr 7+) Reader: Ray Porter

Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War (Gr 7+) Reader: Ray Porter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So check out some audiobooks today, an tell us how you enjoy experiencing books in a whole new way!

Learn how to check them out on our how-to page.

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Four to Read More: Graphic Memoirs

Four to Read More: Graphic Memoirs

We know you love Smile, and El Deafo. We know you’ve probably read Persepolis already (and if you haven’t, get on that!), and that you might be staring at the graphic novel section, wondering how you’ll possibly find the memoir comics among all the superheroes and anthropomorphized mice. But never fear my intrepid readers! Your friendly librarian is here to assist you!

Here are four recommendations for graphic memoirs.

prison island

Prison Island by Colleen Frakes

Colleen grew up on MacNeil Island, the last operating prison island in the United States. Off the coast of Washington, the island is accessible only by land or sea. In this book, she tells the story of a life where pizza deliveries are met at the ferry, pool toys have to be locked up so inmates can’t escape on them, and being an ordinary girl in extraordinary circumstances.

honor girl

Honor Girl by Maggie Thrash

In unflinching honesty and beautiful watercolor illustrations, Maggie Thrash tells the story of her fifteen year old self’s first love with an older teen girl at Camp Bellflower in Kentucky, and the support and prejudices she encountered.

tomboy

Tomboy by Liz Prince

Liz doesn’t do pink, tutus, or other “girl stuff.” She hates the way girls are supposed to act. But she’s not one of the boys either. Follow her journey of discovering where she fits, and if there’s more than one way to be a girl in this memoir.

 

ozge

Dare to Disappoint: Growing up in Turkey by Özge Samanci

Özge’s family expects her to grow up and be an engineer like her sister, but she is drawn to the sea and a more interesting and chaotic life. Set against a backdrop of militaristic, secular, and religious conflict in Turkey, Özge tells her struggle to find a version of herself that everyone can be happy with.

 

If none of those appeal to you, or if you just want more, all you have to do is go the the catalog, put autobiographical comics into the search box and hit the button that says Subject. Then you’ll see all the graphic memoirs we have!

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New in the Library: The Believer!

New in the Library: The Believer!

Last year your librarians spent some time choosing new magazines and periodicals for your perusal. We’ve got some excellent ones now, like Lapham’s Quarterly and Creative Nonfiction, and another one I enjoy is The Believer. How can you not enjoy a magazine that explains its contents as “journalism and essays that are frequently very long, book reviews that are not necessarily timely, and interviews that are intimate, frank, and also very long”?

The Believer 201508features regular columns by Nick Hornby, and Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket), articles on subjects such as post-Mao fashion in China, HIV prevention in Tijuana, and having afternoon tea with the high priest of the Church of Satan. Among my favorite regular features is the column A Series of Essential Advice, which most recently featured “How to Field Dress a Deer” and “How to Send Things to Germany.”201511

So if you are in the mood for some fascinating in-depth interviews or book reviews, or simply have a package that needs to go to Germany, come check out The Believer!

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October Bay Area Literary and Author Events

October Bay Area Literary and Author Events

locke & keyRidley Pearson, author of Lock and Key: The Initiation
Saturday, October 1, 2016 – 2:00pm
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025
atlas
Dylan Thuras, one of the authors of Atlas Obscura, in conversation with Mary Roach
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 – 7:30 p.m.
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park CA 94025
More information and tickets here.
cruzMelissa de la Cruz  and her new book Something in Between
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 – 7:00pm
Redwood Shores Library
399 Marine Parkway @ Bridge Parkway
Redwood City, CA
Amy-Kurzweil-Books-Inc.-Palo-AltoAmy Kurzweil in conversation with Malena Watrous
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 – 7:00pm
Books Inc.
74 Town & Country Village
Palo Alto, CA
summerlongPeter S. Beagle, author of The Last Unicorn and Summerlong, in conversation with Tad Williams
Thursday, October 6, 2016 – 7:00pm (seating opens at 6:00)
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025
rebel genius

Michael DiMartino, author of Rebel Genius, in conversation with Castilleja friend Gene Luen Yang
Monday, October 10, 2016 – 7:00 p.m.
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025
RSVP here.

alton
Alton Brown Book Signing: EveryDayCook
Wednesday, October 12, 2016 – 7:30 p.m.
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park CA 94025
black widow
Margaret Stohl and the People of Marvel, Black Widow: Red Vengeance
Friday, October 14, 2016 – 7:00pm
Kepler’s Books
1010 El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025
picoultJodi Picoult in conversation with Natalie Baszile about her new book, Small Great Things
7:30 PM
Fox Theatre Redwood City, CA
Steven-Nightingale-Books-Inc-Palo-AltoSteven Nightingale, father of Gabriella ’19, The Hot Climate of Promises and Grace: 64 Stories
Thursday, October 20, 2016 – 7:00pm
Books Inc.
74 Town & Country Village
Palo Alto, CA
FC9780385744126 FC9780553535907Not Your Mother’s Book Club presents Kiesten White, Arwen Elys Dayton and Jessica Cluess
Tuesday, October 25, 2016 – 7:00pm
Books Inc.
3515 California St
San Francisco, CA
Jessi Klein, author of You’ll Grow Out of ItJessi-Klein-at-JCCSF
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 – 7:00pm
JCCSF
3200 California St
San Francisco, CA

 

Header picture: “Pumpkin Texture” by Holly Kuchera, licensed under CC BY 2.0

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American History with the U.S. Census

American History with the U.S. Census

History lovers ahoy! Back in 2014 the U.S. Census website started doing something awesome. Each month on their homepage they take a significant event or person and do a fascinating write-up about it using Census data.

Topics they’ve covered include:

Barnum and Bailey Circus poster from the Library of Congress

Gone with the Wind and the early American film industry

The Galveston Hurricane, still the deadliest natural disaster to strike the United States

P.T. Barnum and the Barnum & Bailey Circus

For September, they have a write up on President McKinley, who is often overshadowed by his successor Theodore Roosevelt. The article featured on the home page changes every month though, so be sure to check back in October and see what’s new!

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Four to Read More: September 11, 2001

Four to Read More: September 11, 2001

This Sunday marks the anniversary of the attack on the Twin Towers in New York in 2001. Of course, most of our students are too young to really remember the attack, so if you’re curious about what living through that day and the aftermath was like, here are four books that give a good window into the time.

towers

Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Deja doesn’t understand why what happened to the Twin Towers matters, or why her dad gets so angry whenever anyone brings it up. It happened before she was even born. But as she begins to research what happened on September 11th, she realizes how much it still effects her world.

 

somewhere

Somewhere Among by Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu

Emma feels caught between her mother’s America and her father’s Japan, not quite belonging in either. As she spends her summer in Japan, waiting for her baby sister to be born, circumstances conspire to extend her family’s stay until September–when the Towers fall and she watches from the other side of the world.

 

 

all have left

All We Have Left by Wendy Mills

16 year old Jesse is still reeling from her brother’s death during the 9/11 attacks when she makes a destructive choice and must face the past. In 2001, proud Muslim Alia goes to argue with her dad, at his office in the Towers. When the attack comes, she must trust a strange boy if she is to survive.

 

up frome

Up From the Sea by Leza Lowitz

In 2011, Kai’s village in Japan is hit by a devastating tsunami. In one day, he loses almost everything and everyone he cares about. When he is later offered a trip to New York to meet other kids whose lives were impacted by 9/11 ten years earlier, he realizes that not only can he meet people who understand what he’s going through, but he can also look for his estranged American father.

 

Featured image: “Void -Night view of the National September 11 Memorial” by Aaron Web, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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